Sphynx Cats sleep a lot. An average cat will sleep for between 13 and 16 hours each day! So, as you can see, this definitely takes up a lot of their time and it is something that you will need to prepare for to ensure that your Sphynx cat is able to get sufficient sleep.
The amount of sleep that your Sphynx will need varies somewhat depending on its age, personality, eating habits and stimulation. Domestic cats with a healthy diet that is provided by their owners don’t need to hunt to supplement their food intake and so they are able to spend more time relaxing and sleeping.
Sometimes cats that spend all of their time indoors (like your Sphynx should!) sleep simply because they are bored and have nothing else to do. This is why should be providing your Sphynx with toys, entertainment and lots of company so that it doesn’t become lazy and lethargic. This can also help to ensure that your Sphynx cat is awake during the day and sleeping at night, which means that it’s not trying to keep you awake!
REM In Sphynx Cat Sleep
Cats, like humans, have two different phases of sleep: Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and Non-REM (NREM).
The REM phase accounts for about 60% of a cats sleeping time. This is about three times more than the average human. REM sleep is the phase during which dreams occur and you might be able to see signs that your cat is dreaming. The eyelids, whiskers and limbs twitch and move around a little.
Non-REM is the deep sleep phase. This is when the cat is not dreaming and the body stops moving at all. The cat’s body is taking the time to repair, regenerate and revitalize itself. This is a very important time, especially for kittens as they need this time to build their immune system and build strong internal functions.
Newborn kittens are asleep for the majority of the time. This is a good safety mechanism as it keeps them close to their mother, quiet and away from the possible threat of predators. Gradually, the young cat will begin to sleep less and less and will start having “cat naps” rather than long, deep sleeps.
Domestic cats have managed to retain some of the natural instincts of wild cats. One if the most obvious of these is the ability to go from deep sleep to a start of absolute alert in a very short period of time. This goes back to the wild cats need to survive in its environment.
Where Should Your Sphynx Sleep?
Given the Sphynx’s hairlessness, its sleeping place needs to be warm and cozy so that it doesn’t lose a lot of its body heat while sleeping. Your Sphynx may enjoy sleeping on a sunny windowsill or shelf, on a radiator or close to a heater, or even in your bed under the blankets! When sleeping, the Sphynx will typically curl up with its face in between its paws. This is another way that they try to conserve body heat.
Whether or not you allow your Sphynx to sleep in your bed is a personal choice, but it can be very difficult to say no! They love being with you at all times, and you get the benefit of extra warmth and comfort!
If you find that you want to keep your bed as your own private sanctuary, then it is a good idea to buy or make a cat bed so that your Sphynx will have somewhere nice to sleep and won’t be upset by not being able to be with you.
Pet stores will generally stock a wide variety of pet beds, ranging in size, comfort and price. The simplest option involves a padded cushion that you can place in a warm spot that your cat likes with a small blanket or two. The more elaborate options have electric heating which will help to keep your Sphynx warm! For many however, this is an unnecessary expense. A hot water bottle will do the trick on cold nights.
How to choose the right Sphynx Cat bed
Nowadays a very wide selection of cat beds is offered. Choosing a bed for your Sphynx Cat remember that hairless cats need much more heat than other cat breeds and their skin is rather sensitive.
There are some important factors to consider when purchasing or making a bed for your Sphynx:
- Material: The material that it’s made from should be durable, comfortable, soft and cozy. Make sure that it’s not too thick or coarse, as this is likely to irritate the Sphynx’s skin.
- Warmth: The Sphynx’s hairlessness means that it gets cold very quickly. Bear this in mind when choosing the bed and its location. Some cat beds will have a roof which also assists in retaining body heat.
- Appearance: If your house is small and your cat bed is going to be visible, then you will probably want it to be stylish and blend in with the rest of your décor.
- Design: The design of cat beds varies from open cushions, enclosed pods and even hammocks. You may need to experiment to see which option your Sphynx prefers. Sometimes they may simply have a favorite cardboard box or laundry basket which they claim as their preferred sleeping spot!
- Cleanable: You will want to be able to clean your cat bed regularly to remove dirt, hair and oils. Make this easy for yourself by getting a bed that has removable covers in a material that is machine washable. The material should also dry quickly so that mold and fungus don’t get the opportunity to develop.
- Guarantee: Many professional products will often a durability guarantee assuring you that it will last for a set period of time or your money back.
You should make your cat bed enticing and appealing to your Sphynx by putting it in the correct location within your house. Choose a location that is quiet, out of the way of traffic and other pets and gets a lot of natural light or artificial warmth. You may need to move your cat bed throughout the day to take advantage of temperature changes to ensure that your Sphynx is warm enough while sleeping. If the position of the bed is not right, then your cat won’t use it. Observe where your Sphynx is choosing to sleep without the bed, and then see if you can put the bed in that location to make him/her more comfortable. The main locations to avoid are those that are cool or damp, or have a draught of air, such as near the entrances to the house.