Why Do Cats Like to Sit on You?

Cat Cafe

You may have noticed that your cat has made a habit of jumping into your lap and sitting on you. Some cats even sit on your head if you permit it, and others will even drape themselves across your shoulders. Why do cats like to sit on their owners? There are actually some sensible explanations for the question, while some of the reasons only make cat-sense and the answers might surprise you. Here are 10 reasons why cats like to sit on their owners and others

1. They crave warmth

Humans give off body heat and cats are creatures who consistently crave comfort and warmth. Your cat may just want to get warmed by the heat that you are giving off, particularly if it’s chilly in the house. Another reason why cats sit on people is to show trust in them. Cats do not usually sit on a person unless they have complete and total trust that they will be treated well and not injured. Cats are more likely to sit on the laps of people who let them come and go as they please without throwing them off or forcing them to stay when they want to get down. This is also one of the reasons that you will often see the cat curling up with the family dog when the two have a good relationship with one another.

3. A cat wants to connect with you

Cats are social animals and as such, they crave a connection with humans. Your cat may be sitting on you because he or she wants to feel close to you. There are times when a cat will give you the cold shoulder and completely ignore you but when it wants to feel close to you again, it will usually jump into your lap and sit on you. Sometimes your cat will also knead your legs which is a return to the time when it was a kitten and stimulating a flow of milk from its mother.

4. Your cat feels safe in your lap

Cats also sit on you when they are feeling insecure or frightened. As a pet parent, you are the one who makes sure that your cat has everything that he needs including food, water, shelter, and love. You are also the protector of your cat and when he is feeling insecure, he knows that he can come to you to feel safe and protected. Some cats even return the favor and protect you when they sense danger.

5. Your cat wants your attention

There are times when your cat may be feeling lonely or even jealous and may want to have your undivided attention. What better way to do this than sitting on your lap? Your cat becomes a focal point and it’s just a natural response to acknowledge kitty and even give him some rubs and scratches behind the ear. The sign of satisfaction is a deep rumbling purr in response.

6. To show superiority or ownership

If there are other animals in the house and you give them attention, your cat may sit on you to show ownership or superiority over the other pets in the home. This sends the message that you belong to the cat as it perches on your lap or head. Sometimes cats get jealous of any attention that you give to other pets or even to children or other members of the household.

7. Because it’s comfortable

Sometimes cats sit on you because you have a comfortable lap. Cats love to be comfortable and if you are wearing clothing with fabric that is soft, it may attract your cat like a magnet. If a cat smells their own scent on clothing it can also attract them.

8. Because she loves you

Your cat may want to sit on you simply to be near you. Cats who adore their owners love the physical contact and so they will often rub up against the legs of their owners. When you sit down, your cat may stroll across your lap, stretch out, and take a nap.

9. Your cat is feeling needy

Cats are amazing and complicated animals. One minute they can be fiercely independent and the next, a cat might feel needy. If your cat is sitting on you a lot lately it could be because he or she is simply feeling needy. If you have been busy and haven’t given your cat much attention lately you might end up with it sitting on top of your head or in your lap more.

10. Your cat is feeling playful

Sometimes cats do the craziest things, particularly when they are in a playful mood. If your cat sits on your shoulder or on your head it might indicate that it is playtime. Cats have also been known to sit on their owners’ backs when they’re all stretched out on the floor to watch a movie. While not all cats crave this type of closeness, most of them will sit on your lap or your back on a regular basis if it is allowed.


Cats like to sit on their owners for a variety of reasons. The main ones deal with their emotions and whether they feel playful, loving, fearful or lonely. Cats are complicated and they tend to have a broad range of emotions that can change in the blink of an eye. If your cat is sitting on you more than usual then it could be that your kitty is trying to tell you something. As a pet parent, it’s up to you to figure out what the cryptic message that your cat is trying to tell you truly is. It’s a sign that your kitty has trust in you and loves to be in close physical contact so a touchy-feely cat is a sign that you are doing a great job as a pet parent.

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