Is Your Cat Lethargic or Do They Just Like to Sleep?

We all know that cats love to nap. They’re one of the most restful and peaceful animals out there. In fact, it’s normal behavior for cats to take frequent naps throughout the day. That’s actually where humans got the idea for napping to begin with. However, there’s a fine line between napping and sleeping too much—even for cats. If you suspect that your feline friend is sleeping way more than normal, it might be time to get it checked. A lethargic cat might signal one that’s also sick, and it’s important for you to know how to tell the difference.

Normal cat sleep

Cats have learned to sleep for long hours during the day through evolution. It’s a tactic that help the predators reserve a lot of their energy towards hunting. After all, stalking and chasing require a tremendous amount of energy. However, if you compare cat predators to other animals that simply graze for their food, you can see why they need their sleep more than the rest of the animal kingdom. Cats have to chase after their food, which are oftentimes just as fast as they are. In order for them to eat, they need to be able to keep up with their prey. That being said, a domestic cat that’s in good physical shape should be sleeping anywhere from 15 to 20 hours per day. That’s quite a lot if you think about it, but it’s still very noticeable when your cat is sleeping because of lethargy.

How can you tell?

It’s important for you to pay attention to your cat’s behavior when you’re trying to determine whether it’s lethargic or not. Observation is key, especially since most cats are active during hours when people are sleeping. If you observe your cat during the day, you might find that it’s sleeping majority of the time. You’ll also have to consider your cat’s personality at the end of the day. If your cat tends to be more anti-social than normal, it might just need its space away from you if it doesn’t tend to interact. But this is actually one of the best ways to determine whether your cat is lethargic or not.

Playing with your cat, especially with its favorite toy, is one way to find out. If your cat doesn’t seem interested at all or doesn’t react in any way, there’s a possibility that lethargy might be the cause. In addition, you could also try the treat bag method. Most cats love their treats, and if they don’t have a reaction when it comes to treat time, a problem might be at hand. Try shaking or crunching up the treat bag to see if you can get your cat to react. If it doesn’t, it might be time to schedule a vet visit.

Causes of lethargy in cats

There are many reasons why a cat might seem or act lethargic, and it ranges from mild to serious reasons. If a cat is experiencing temperature changes, it might take it a little bit of adjusting before it gets back to feeling and acting normal. Other more serious things that can cause lethargy include diseases such as cancer, heart disease, infections, heartworms, kidney disease, parasites, arthritis, and anemia. Depression and dehydration can also cause your cat to be lethargic. Also, check to make sure that your cat hasn’t been poisoned because an ingested foreign object could also cause lethargy.

Lethargy but healthy

Once you’ve taken your cat to the vet, you should be able to find out if your cat is lethargic or not. If your vet tells you that your cat is medically healthy yet it’s still acting lethargic, it’s time to assess its environment. You’ll need to start questioning whether your cat’s diet is good or if it’s getting enough exercise. Make sure that it’s getting enough water as well to prevent even the slightest dehydration. Also, you want to make sure that your cat is getting enough play time. If it’s not motivated to play, it probably won’t do it. Your cat needs all these things to stay healthy as well. Without them, they might start acting lethargic even when they’re healthy all around.


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