If you’ve ever left a letter, a newspaper or a piece of paper lying around your home only to find that it has quickly been occupied by a cat then you will have asked yourself why do cats love sitting on paper?
The answer is fairly simple; paper, especially newspaper, is a great insulator. Cats like sitting on newspaper because it feels warm and reflects their body heat back to them. This is the reason why you are advised to stuff newspaper into your clothes if you ever get stuck outside in the cold unprepared.
The reason cats like to sit on something that is a bit warmer was revealed in a 2006 study by the National Research Council which found that cats enjoy temperatures between 30°C and 36°C. This is because at these temperatures cats do not have to generate any additional heat to keep themselves comfortable nor do they need to cool themselves down. Sitting on paper provides an extra barrier of insulation from the cold floor, table top or work surface therefore making it fractionally easier for their body to regulate their temperature.
There are also several other theories as to why cats like to sit on paper:
Cats Sit On Paper Because They Want Your Attention
Cats seem to be particularly good at choosing the most inconvenient time and place to sit on their chosen bit of paper, for example you may be reading a book or filling in a form and they will choose to come and sit directly on the book or form you are working on!
This sort of behaviour appears to be a direct and obvious attempt to get your attention, they see that you are interested in the paper so choose to sit on it to ensure that they are directly within your reach and line of sight so that they can be confident of getting some attention from you.
Cats Sit On Paper To Mark Their Territory
Cats are inherently curious so anything new which is brought into your home, be that a piece of furniture or a single piece of paper, must be investigated, sniffed and…sat upon before it can be accepted into your home!