How Much Sleep Does Your Cat Really Need?

 A guest post by Adam Kyle 

patchesIt’s always tempting to measure your pet’s internal clock by comparing it with your own. After all, many of us come to think of our pets as “furry people.” In reality, they’re biologically much different from us, with an entirely different set of internal requirements needed for functioning at their best.

And as any cat owner can tell you, a feline will often have a very different sense of when it’s time to sleep and when it’s time to be wide awake. That said, it’s important to understand the difference between a well-rested cat up and about and an anxious, unhealthy animal that’s not getting the right amount of sleep.

So exactly how much sleep does a cat actually need each night to be at his or her best?

Cats Sleep Longer Than You Might Expect

On average, cats can sleep between 12 and 14 hours each day. By comparison, the average adult human needs seven to nine hours of nightly rest. So why do cats, who are much smaller than the average person, need nearly twice as much sleep?

Theories range, but many believe it’s because of their hunter-related instincts. House cats among the most successful hunters out of all predatory species. To catch prey, they need to be alert, agile, and very fast. By sleeping for so long, they allow their bodies to become especially energized. Can they help it if all that energy gets released at 3 o’clock in the morning?

Why They Love Cardboard Boxes So Much

While your cat might doze away on your mattress, studies have shown they seem to have a quirky preference for resting in cardboard boxes. Scientists believe they find these boxes to be comfortable and provide a sense of security. In one study, a researcher found that newly arrived cats to a shelter who had a box to sneak away to weren’t as stressed out as the cats who lacked one.

So the next time you see your cat sleeping in an old shoe box instead of the expensive cat bed you purchased, just go with it.

If Your Cat Is Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little

Even though it might be normal for your cat to sleep about half the day, it might be a sign of a serious health problem. It’s true that obese cats tend to sleep longer than healthier felines. It’s also possible that severe stress might be to blame for your cat not getting the right amount of sleep. Talk to a veterinarian if you suspect that a serious health issue is to blame for your cat’s sleep troubles.

Cats are amazing animals, and it only makes sense that we’re curious about their sleep behaviors. They can keep us up at night, quite literally, thinking about it. As long as your cat gets the right food and a sizeable amount of exercise daily, you have no reason to be alarmed if your feline friend hasn’t budged from their cat bed for more than half a day.  Instead, feel free to be amazed, and maybe a little bit jealous.

is a sleep expert at MattressReviews.net. A workaholic by nature, it wasn’t until his late twenties that he realized the importance of sleep for his health. At that point, he focused on learning everything he could about sleep. Now, Adam specializes in how his environment and his physical well-being affect his sleep. A San Francisco native, he finds the sounds of the city soothing and struggles to get to sleep in quieter environments.   


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This Is Not A Shame Post.

Yesterday I was getting ready to give a group tour of the shelter when someone started banging on our door.

“Excuse me. There’s a bunny in a cage at the end of your driveway.  The cage was too big for me to get in my car to bring it to you, could you help?”

Well, I still had 25 minutes until my tour came so I hopped in my car and sure enough, at the end of the driveway was this:


They didn’t leave a note or anything but this is an obviously young bunny with a clean new cage and 2 mostly full bags of food and hay.  This screams holiday gift gone wrong, but we’ll talk about that later.  We brought our new guest into the shelter, determined that she was a healthy little girl, and we put her on the adoption floor where my tour group got the bonus treat of getting to name her: Buttercup.

Now this is usually the part where people get angry at the person who did this but this post isn’t about anger or shame, it’s about needing to have a conversation.  So now I’m going to take a minute and talk to you directly, person who abandoned the bunny:

Here’s what I think happened.  You planned what you thought was the best holiday surprise ever but it went south (which is why we ALWAYS ask all family members in a house to be on the same page before adopting and NEVER give a pet as a surprise gift).  When it didn’t go the way you had hoped you felt ashamed that you gave a “bad” gift, upset that a family member was probably mad at you right then, and you just wanted to get rid of the “problem.” I think you figured the bunny would only be outside for a few minutes and that, with a fur coat on, it would be fine. And you know what, you were right.  We got to the bunny in about 20 minutes, she’s safe and healthy and we will get her to a forever home.  But it doesn’t always work out that way.  Just last summer someone abandoned a baby chihuahua in our driveway and it died of heatstroke alone before anyone could get to it.  Yesterday when you did this it was 35 outside but today it was 19 at the same time, more than cold enough to cause hypothermia in a small animal fur coat or no.  Make no mistake, you and your rabbit got lucky.

I understand that it was probably embarrassing to bring your pet here, you had a bad taste in your mouth because of it, and you just wanted to get the whole thing over with.  Moreover, I want to thank you for not abandoning her in the woods where she almost certainly would have died.  However you and everyone out there who may face the same problem someday need to know that what you did isn’t as safe as you think it is.  Something bad could have happened to your pet, something you didn’t intend; and you would have had to live with that for the rest of your life, the way the owner of that puppy will. That’s why we work so hard to make sure that people are aware that we are not going to shame them for surrendering their animal.  We took in over 1,100 animals last year, believe me we’ve seen all sorts of reasons and we don’t judge.  If you have an emergency, just come. To us or, a vet office, or even animal control.  Don’t abandon your pet alone.



Animal Protection Center Celebrating 10th Year By Honoring Bank Of Easton and MSPCA President Carter Luke at Annual Tails & Ties Gala

carter-lukeThe Animal Protection Center of Southeastern Massachusetts will be kicking off its tenth-anniversary celebrations by honoring two long-time supporters at its Tails & Ties Gala on March 9th. The Animal Good Citizen Award will be given to Carter Luke, current president of the MSPCA as well as a sitting member of a variety of non-profit organizations including the London-based World Animal Protection, the American Fondouk in Morocco, and the Thornton Burgess Society in Sandwich, Massachusetts. Carter will be receiving the Animal Good Citizen award for his work supporting the APCSM as it worked to separate from the MSPCA in 2009 and in the years since then.“Luke was always available to offer advice and help when we first became an independent shelter,”says Executive Director Kim Heise, “We were a group of community members and volunteers trying to figure out how to continue serving the area, and he took our calls, helped us navigate those first difficult years, and he has continued to support us personally through the years.”   


BoE_2Col_PosiThe Paws For Applause award will be given to Bank of Easton, who has been a community supporter of the shelter from its inception as well.  Shelter president Chuck Givonetti remembers the bank stepping in to help during the APCSM’s early days, “The folks at Bank of Easton have been with us since the start and they always gave us the same customer service that we would have expected if we were a big organization.”


The two will be honored at the 10th Annual Tails & Ties Gala, which will be held at Lombardo’s in Randolph on March 9th.  The event will kick off a year-long celebration of the shelter’s 10th year an independent, community-based animal shelter.

Learn about how you can attend and sponsor the event. 


More Information About Our Honorees

Carter Luke is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, a post he has held since 2006.  Before being selected as President, he was Executive Vice President. Before joining the MSPCA staff in 1985, Luke was the Executive Director of the Dane County Humane Society in Madison, Wisconsin.  He began his career in animal welfare as the Shelter Manager of the Coulee Region Humane Society in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1977.

A former elementary school teacher, he received his bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, majoring in mathematics with concentrated study in wildlife ecology.  His graduate studies were in the Department of Education at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse.

Luke serves on the Boards of a variety of non-profit organizations including the London-based World Animal Protection, the American Fondouk in Morocco, and the Thornton Burgess Society in Sandwich, Massachusetts.   He has participated in many research projects concerning animal population dynamics, hoarding of animals, and the relationship between cruelty to animals and other crime.

Bank of Easton is  known for local work in the community, has hosted adoption events, sponsored the shelter’s events and outreach programs, and members of the bank’s team volunteer for shelter activities.“At our two offices in North and South Easton, we provide full-service personal and business banking in a warm and friendly atmosphere, and we’ve been serving the local community since 1889.”Meg said.“We believe that responsible banking includes being a good neighbor. That’s why we proudly support and contribute to local events and charitable endeavors through our Town Proud program.” Meg Murray, Vice President of Lending at Bank of Easton, currently sits on the board at the shelter.  

 The APCSM is an open admission animal care and adoption facility, with a focus on prevention of cruelty to animals, education and outreach, low-cost spay/neuter programs and helping animals and people in the community.  With the help of volunteers, community members, and sponsors the shelter has helped thousands of animals find their forever homes.