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Why Does My Cat Sniff My Nose & Mouth When I’m Asleep?

If you have been woken to your cat sniffing you, you may be wondering why this has happened.

Why does my cat sniff my nose & mouth when I am asleep?

If you woke up to your cat sniffing your mouth and nose then there is a good chance you did exactly what they wanted you to do. Your cat may be sniffing your nose and mouth for various reasons, but the two main ones are to either wake you up or to smell your breath for familiarity.

So, now you know why. Keep reading to learn if your cat worries about you while you sleep, the advantage of sleeping with your cat, how cats use their senses to their advantage, and so much more.


Getting a good Whiff of your scent

Why does my cat sniff my nose and my mouth when I am asleep?

Why does my cat sniff my nose and my mouth when I am asleep?

When your cat is getting to know you they recognize you best by your scent. When you are sleeping and completely still this is their best opportunity to get a good whiff of your scent.

If your cat is used to your scent and continues to wake you up by sniffing then there could be several reasons why they are trying to wake you up. It is likely that they could be bored and want to play with you, or they may be hungry and need you to top off their dish.

What are cat nose prints?

A cat’s nose print is similar to a human’s fingerprint. No human has a fingerprint that matches anyone else’s, making their print 100 % their own. Cat’s nose prints are the same way, each one is unique and unlike any other.

Do cats worry about us when we sleep?

Cats are most active in the night time, which is usually when their owner is sleeping. If you’re completely still while sleeping they may get a bit worried and need reassurance that you are okay. You may wake up to your cat sniffing you to make sure you’re still breathing, but this is just a sign of a loving pet.

What are the advantages of sleeping with your cat?

A lot of pet owners find it very comforting to sleep with their cat, and that extra comfort helps them get a better night’s sleep. Sharing a bed with your pet can help improve your bond with them, but you must be consistent with your routine.

You can’t allow your cat to snuggle up to you some nights but not others. This will leave them feeling confused.

Stress Relievers?

Many people find that their cats are stress relievers, so if you’re someone who stays awake stressed out then you may have noticed sharing a bed with your cat has helped you feel more relaxed.

Body Heat

Another great reason to share a bed with your cat is that they release a good amount of body heat and this could help you stay warm at night. Allowing your cat to sleep in your bed could save you money on your heating bill in the winter.

What are the disadvantages of sleeping with your cat?

When your head hits the pillow you probably have intentions of leaving it there for around 8 hours or so. Your cat isn’t on the same sleeping schedule as you and they don’t really care if you need your beauty rest.

Fidget at night

Cats usually fidget at night, getting up and changing positions and spots multiple times, which is likely to wake you up a few times throughout the night.

Wake you up

Cats also like to have a lot of attention. Once they get a nap and wake up feeling good, they are likely to try and wake you up too so they can get some loving. If you don’t wake up to pet them that’s not an issue for your cat, as they will probably just start rubbing up against you until you wake up.

Another reason you may not want to share a bed with your cat is that studies have shown that people who co-sleep with their cats have a harder time falling asleep quickly and usually wake up feeling more tired. One big issue they all have in common is the worry of rolling over and crushing their cat.

Is there any reason why my cat sleeps close to my head?

If you share a bed with your cat you may notice that they like to sleep close to your head. There are two reasons why your cat is sleeping so close to your head:

01. You Toss & Turn

The first reason is that they feel a lot safer. People toss and turn when they sleep and your cat will sleep by your head if they notice you move around a lot. They also feel safe by being around your familiar scent, which they get a good whiff of while you’re breathing at night.

02. They love your head heat

The other reason they prefer sleeping close to your head is that they love the heat that comes off of it.

Cats are a lot more comfortable when they are sleeping somewhere warm, which is why it’s common to find them sleeping beside the heat vents in the winter. Your breath at night is the next best thing for your cat when they want somewhere warm to rest.

How do cats use their senses to their advantage?

Since cats are smaller in size they are more susceptible to being attacked by larger animals when they are outdoors, which is why they have the ability to use their senses wisely to spot the danger. A cat has remarkable eyesight, very good hearing, and a sense of smell that can detect things far before the eye can see them.

On top of all of this, cats are also very stealthy. When they sense danger they can remove themselves from the scene before you have a chance to know something is wrong.

Is a cat’s nose more sensitive than a dog’s?

Your cat has an excellent sense of smell, but it can’t compare to what a dog’s nose can do. A dog actually has a more sensitive nose than a cat does. Every species has olfactory receptors in their noses to help them smell things, some animals have more than others.

Us humans only have 6 million olfactory receptors which is why we can’t smell who’s coming around the corner.

Dogs have 300 million olfactory receptors, which is far more than the 80 million that cats have. This makes their noses a lot more sensitive to scents than a cat’s.

Why is my cat grabbing my hair as well?

Your cat could be grabbing at your hair because they sense something that wasn’t there before. This could be anything from a new hair product to a bit of spilled food that you didn’t notice. It is common for cats to do this when their owners have come home from the hair salon and are smelling like the products used for hair coloring or perms.

If that isn’t the case then there is a good chance that your cat is grabbing your hair because they want to show you affection. They are having fun playing with it and they feel as though they are bonding with you. Playing with hair is also a stress reliever for some cats.

Can a cat identify you easier with smell rather than sight?

Your cat recognizes you by your smell better than your appearance. When your cat gets a whiff of your scent then they know for sure that it is actually you and it also reassures them that you are okay.

Lindsey Browlingdon