Why Do Cats Like To Sit On Laps – The Reasons Why

If you’ve had a cuddly cat, have you ever been sitting at the computer in your chair, and all of a sudden, your cat is insisting on climbing into your lap and curling into a ball? Maybe you’re relaxing on the couch, and out of nowhere, you have a big furball on top of your legs. One thing is for sure; you’ve probably noticed a pattern with your cuddly cats that they love your lap! So, why do cats like to sit on laps? 

Cats like to sit on laps because they feel safe when they are near you. They may be trying to warm up or communicate when they sit on laps. Lap cats trust their owners and are more affectionate.  

If you’ve been around cats for a long time, you’ve probably experienced their unique personalities. Some cats are more loving and want to snuggle with you all the time. Other cats may prefer to keep their distance and hangout by themselves. Then there are the lap cats of course! Let’s take a more in-depth look into lap cats!

Are Lap Cats Common

Lap cats can be common, but it typically varies by breed. If a lap cat is what you’re after, there are certain breeds that are commonly known to be more of a loveable lap cat compared to some other breeds. 

For example, Main Coon cats and Ragdoll cats are two breeds that are known for their cuddly nature. They’re compared to dogs at times and sometimes known to enjoy being held and tend to be relatively docile. 

Some people believe that getting a purebred cat will give you better odds of having a lap cat versus having some sort of mixed-breed domestic cat. If you think about if you took a cat that’s known to be cuddly and it was mixed with a cat that tends to stick to themselves, how would you know how they would turn out?

Why Are Some Cats Lap Cats And Others Not

Whether a cat is a lap cat or not can come down to breed, their history, and their relationship with their owner altogether. If you get a cat that is known to be independent and doesn’t like to be touched, you can plan on them not being a lap cat.

Just like humans, cats can just be born with a personality that doesn’t like the closeness of their humans. They may prefer to love you from a distance. 

It could be that your cat has a thing against other animals. If you have multiple animals in the house, they may not feel comfortable hanging out on your lap. Since it’s all about feeling safe and trust, they may feel too vulnerable to stay there. 

Why Does My Cat Sit Next To Me But Not On My Lap

Cats may only sit next to you and not on your lap because they don’t fully trust you yet. They may love you and want to show you some affection but aren’t entirely on board with feeling totally safe while on your lap. 

Some of it can come down to the history of the cat. If you didn’t raise your cat from a kitten and adopted them when they were older, it may have to do with their story before you came along. 

Consider if the cat had a bad experience with their previous owners. The last thing they’re going to do is instantly trust their new human. You can try to work with a cat like this to earn their trust, but some are going to be stuck in their ways. 

You can continue to try and work with them to get them on your lap but try and respect their space. Be aware of how they’re feeling and what they enjoy. If they hate being pet in certain ways, don’t pet them that way. The more you go against what they enjoy, the lower your chance they’ll fully trust you and sit on your lap. 

Will My Cat Ever Become A Lap Cat

You can try and train your cat to become a lap cat if they aren’t that way from the start. It really comes down to the cat’s personality. Not all cats are super affectionate and want to be by themselves. 

If you want to turn your cat into a lap cat, you can try a few things. Positive reinforcement is always a good route. Consider having some treats. That will somewhat coax the cat into coming onto your lap. While they sit there, pet them and give them a few more treats. They’ll put two and two together to realize sitting on your lap gets them snacks!

You can take baby steps with your cat to see if they will eventually trust you enough to want to sit on your lap. Try getting the cat to sit next to you first. Maybe you can put their cat bed or their favorite toys next to you on the couch. Eventually, they may wander over to your lap. 

Will My Kitten Stay A Lap Cat

You can put a good effort into making sure your kitten will stay a lap cat when they grow up. You almost have more of a chance of getting a lap cat if you’re raising them from a baby. You will have control of their life story. 

When you get a cat at an older age that already isn’t a lap cat, you may never change them. You can work with the kitten to truly trust you at a very young age. As your cat grows up, they will recognize you as their safe place. 

Try and show your kitten a lot of affection when they’re young and get them used to being cuddled. It’s similar to how you were raised as a human will play into what you’re interested in as an adult. 

Why Does My Cat Sit On My Lap And Then Bite Me

Your cat may bite you when they sit on your lap because you’ve scratched them in a place they don’t like, or it may just be playful. Not all cats enjoy being scratched in the same spots. 

Some cats are more sensitive in different areas. If your cat is sitting on your lap and you start to pet them on their back at the base of their tail, you may end up getting bit because it’s such a sensitive area on them.

Some believe that static electricity can cause your cat to bite you. If you’re continuously petting their fur, you may end up building up static on their fur, which could be an unpleasant feeling. 

If your cats are playfully biting you, it may just be because you’ve put them in a playful mood with all the affection. If your cat tends to bite you while sitting on your lap, consider having one of their favorite toys nearby. You can play with them to redirect their bites. 

Why Does My Cat Sit On My Lap And Stare At Me

Your cat may sit on your lap and stare at you to get your attention. They may be bored, looking for affection, or maybe they’re simply hungry!

It’s good to try and learn your cat’s body language to understand what they’re trying to tell you. It would be so much easier if they could just tell us what they want with words, but of course, that won’t happen. 

Try to put their signals together. Say every time you stand after your cat is staring at you, they immediately run to the food bowl; it may be their way of letting you know they’re hungry. If you pay close enough attention, you can probably start to figure out what they want. 

Overall, if your cat is one that loves to sit on your lap, you should feel proud. Please take it as a compliment. Your cat is showing you how much they love and trust you and consider you to be their safe place.


Welcome to FAQCats! We are a team of cat owners and writers who love to write about everything related to cats. We strive to provide the most accurate and helpful information about cats through extensive research and caring for our own fur-pals!

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