Yes, cats can breathe normally when under blankets.
If they find themselves getting uncomfortable, they will move out from under the blankets.
Most blankets are safe, although heavier blankets do pose a higher risk so it’s best to keep your cat away from weighted blankets just in case.
As long as your cat moved under the blanket themselves and the blanket isn’t too heavy that it restricts their movement then you can relax knowing your cat can breathe without a problem.
If this is the first time they are going under the blanket, keep an eye on them and make sure they have an easy way out if they need it.
How Do Cats Breathe Under Blankets?
Blankets are made from breathable materials so there are plenty of gaps that keep air flowing through them.
This means cats continue to breathe normally and get the oxygen they need when under the blankets.
If the blanket is very thick and heavy, it will be harder for air and oxygen to permeate through so it will be less comfortable to sleep under.
There will still be enough oxygen, but your cat would probably move out from under the blanket quite quickly.
Cats will often curl up and sleep as they normally would when under the blanket.
The factor that bothers humans most when breathing under blankets is the temperature of the air.
The warm air makes it feel like there is no fresh air available, the reality is there is plenty of fresh air and oxygen.
Cats seem to be unfazed by the warmer air, this is likely because their body temperature is higher than ours and they have smaller lungs so don’t breathe in as much air with every inhale.
How Long Can Cats Breathe Under Blankets?
This depends on the individual cat, the blanket, and the situation/ temperature.
Don’t worry, your cat will move out from under the blanket if they become uncomfortable.
As long as they have a way out and the blanket is not too heavy, they can stay under there for a long time.
If your cat is sleeping under the blankets at night then you can generally expect them to get up and move around at least a couple of times throughout the night to either reposition, get a drink or some food, or to sleep in another spot.
Lighter blankets are safer as they will get more airflow through them and won’t hinder your cat’s ability to breathe.
Can Kittens Breathe Safely Under Blankets?
Yes, kittens can breathe under blankets, but they are more at risk than older cats because they may not realise when it is getting too hot under there and they might not be able to get themselves out quickly.
Due to this, it is better to keep young kittens out from under blankets until they are a bit older. Even light blankets can be heavy for a small kitten so keep this in mind too.
If your kitten likes to go under the blankets, keep an eye on them and make sure they always have an escape route.
It’s best not to leave a kitten under a blanket unattended.
Why Does My Cat Like Sleeping Under The Blankets?
There are many reasons your cat may like to sleep under blankets including warmth, safety, and affection.
Cats tend to be more drawn to sleeping under the blankets during winter months when the temperature is colder as the blankets provide a warm and cosy spot to rest.
They may also sleep under the blankets because they are affectionate and want to be near you, this can help strengthen the bond between you and can even help your cat to relax and fall asleep faster too.
Some cats find sleeping under blankets relaxing because they feel safe and hidden.
Remember that sleep is one of the only times cats are vulnerable so they like to find spots that are safe and secure.
Should I Let My Cat Sleep Under The Blankets?
In terms of safety, there is no problem with your cat sleeping under the blankets.
As long as you didn’t place them under the blanket and they went there by themselves.
However, there are a few potential downsides to having a cat sleeping under the blankets, these include:
- Disrupted sleep – It is unlikely your cat is going to sleep the whole night without waking up and moving around so your sleep will be disrupted.
- Allergies – People with allergies or asthma may experience worse symptoms as a result of having a cat sleeping in the blankets.
- Parasites/ Infections – Your cat could bring parasites into your bed, particularly if they are an outside cat. They may also bring dirt and debris from their litter tray onto the blankets too.
You can discourage your cat from sleeping under the blankets by providing alternative sleeping spots for them and making the bedroom less appealing by spraying scents such as essential oils around the room before bed, or by keeping the bedroom door closed.
Why Do My Cats Not Like Being Under The Blankets?
Most cats don’t like being under the covers, particularly when they have longer fur and the weather is warmer.
Reasons your cats may not like to go under the blankets include the texture of the blanket, the feeling of being restricted and unable to see what’s happening around them, and the preference for personal space.
It may also be because they already have a favourite sleeping spot where they feel warm and comfortable so the blankets simply don’t appeal to them.
Every cat is unique so don’t take it personally if your cat doesn’t like to snuggle under the blankets.
It’s important to never put your cat under the blanket, instead, always let them decide if they want to go under the blanket.
Why Do Cats Burrow Under Blankets?
The blanket offers a perfect place for cats to burrow and exhibit their denning instincts. Although domestic cats aren’t wild, they still have wild instincts.
Wild cats can be both predators and prey too, burrowing in the blanket is great for both situations.
The blanket is safe and secure which is ideal for resting and hiding from predators, and it is also a great place for cats to wait until the time is right to pounce on prey too.
Cats also burrow under the blankets to feel safe by creating a dark, warm, and hidden spot for themselves.
Once hidden in the blanket the enclosed space helps them to relax.
Simple Blanket Safety Tips For Pets
If your cat loves to spend time under blankets, keep these simple tips in mind to ensure they are safe:
- If your cat looks uncomfortable, remove the blanket or create an easy escape route for them
- Avoid letting your cat climb on or under knitted blankets with large holes and blankets with large tassels or loose thread. These blankets pose a higher risk as the cats may chew or shred the blanket. This can cause issues, for example, if any of the material is swallowed they could choke or experience digestive issues. If they play with the tassels or the knitted blanket they could get stuck and be unable to free themselves.
- Ensure the blanket is made of breathable material – the type of blanket makes a difference, while most blankets are breathable, heavier blankets do pose more risk.
- Monitor your cat closely – particularly during the first few times they sleep under blankets to ensure they are okay and they don’t get stuck or struggle to find a way out. Most cats are absolutely fine but it is worth making sure.
- If your cat likes to sleep under blankets, always check where they are before placing items down or sitting down on the bed. The last thing you want to do is startle or injure your cat.