A cat’s life is easily admired by a human, as we watch them eat, sleep and play all day long. While they have high energy during playtime, cats also sleep for a large chunk of the day. Savannah cats are no different, which leaves many owners wondering just how many hours Savannah cats sleep.
Savannahs will sleep an average of 15 hours per day and sometimes as much as 20. While they are high energy cats, the majority of their day is still spent asleep. They also experience similar sleep cycles to humans, including the ability to dream.
You may question how your Savannah can possibly sleep as long as it does, but you will find that most of the time they are still alert. Below, we will go into more detail about Savannah cats’ sleeping behavior, and how to notice worrying changes in their sleeping habits.
How Many Hours Do Savannahs Sleep?
All cats share similar sleepingpatterns, and it can be traced back to their natural biology. In the wild, felines are natural predators, and this stands true for both domestic and exotic breeds. They need to maintain a high level of energy in order to be able to stalk and capture prey. Sleeping long hours throughout the day helps store up that energy to be used later.
When They Are Most Active
Additionally, cats are considered crepuscular animals, which means that they are most active between dusk and dawn. This explains why most of their napping is done during the day, but also why your Savannah decides that your bedtime is their play time. However, most Savannahs will adjust their sleeping patterns over time to line up with yours.
Most Savannah cats, on average, will sleep for up to 15 hours a day, but some will sleep as much as 20 hours per day, especially as they grow older. While humans will (usually) have one long deep sleep your cat will take several short and long naps throughout the day.
Over 24 hours, your Savannah will enter several sleep-wake cycles that average just under two hours at a time. During these cycles, cats will have a period of wakefulness lasting about 30 minutes where they are alert and active. This is then followed by a period of sleep. The sleep period is a mixture of light and heavy sleep where your cat may still be alert to their surroundings.
How Savannah Cats Sleep And Do They Dream?
Most of your Savannah’s dozing will be catnapping, which means they will still be alert to different surrounding stimuli. This is especially true for their sense of hearing and smell, which in the wild would have helped them prepare against a potential threat or a tasty meal, even when asleep. In your case, your Savannah may be alerted to your presence or the smell of dinner.
Odd Sleeping Positions
You may notice that when your Savannah takes their naps they sleep in all sorts of weird positions and places. Sometimes their ears may adjust to the direction of sound while seemingly still out cold. Cats also enjoy sleeping sitting up which causes their muscles to stiffen holding them up while they enjoy a snooze. Whatever position they choose your Savannah is still always ready to pounce.
While your cat is napping, they are typically in what we call the NREM(Non Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep, which allows them to still maintain their alertness. However, as your cat slips deeper into NREM they enter slow-wave sleep or deep sleep. At this time their body will start to relax more, giving way to a partial paralysis preparing your Savannah for the next sleep stage.
Normally NREM will last for 15–20-minute periods at a time, then your Savannah will slip into what we call REM(Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. During this stage your cat will slip into a deep sleep that is much harder to wake from. You can typically recognize this stage by your cat’s appearance, as they will be less responsive, with relaxedmuscles, and perhaps hiding or tucking their head.
REM sleep is vital for Savannahs as much as it is for humans. Many experts believe REM sleep is responsible for improving memory, alertness, and possibly the relief of stress. This sleep stage is when yourbrain is most activeand can focus on itself while the rest of your body is in sleep mode. Each REM cycle for Savannahs lasts about five minutes before they reenter NREM.
Additionally, if you are wondering if your Savannah has dreams of their own, the answer is yes. When your cat enters REM sleep this is also when they would dream just like humans do, although there is still no way of knowing what cats dream about or if their dreams are anything like a human’s. Cat brains are wired very differently to ours and this could affect what dreaming may look like.
However, when your Savannah is dreaming you will be able to notice by the subtle movements that they make. Similar to how dogs will “run” or wag their tails in their sleep, your cat may twitch its legs, tail, or even its whiskers. They may even make small meows or puff out bits of air from their nose and mouth. Sometimes they are so deep in sleep their eyelids will flutter or remain partly open.
Changes In Sleeping Habits Could Indicate Health Problems
As a proud Savannah parent, it is your responsibility to look after and monitor your cat’s health and behavior. In other words, learn your Savannah’s habits and their schedule so that you notice if things start to change. Every cat is different, meaning what might be a warning sign for one may be nothing at all for another.
When To Be Concerned
As we have discussed, the majority of Savannahs will sleep for at least 15 hours per day, but some may sleep more. So, you may be wondering how to tell if they are sleeping too much and when to be concerned. If you are monitoring your cat’s behavior it should become obvious when something is wrong.
For example, if you have a Savannah that is regularly active and playful at the same time every evening but has suddenly become disinterested or has opted to sleep, you may want to keep an eye on them. Most illnesses that involve elevated sleep will also be accompanied by other symptoms. Lethargy alone is generally not a sign that something is wrong with your Savannah.
If you feel your Savannah has been spending more time sleeping than usual, other signs to look for will be other changes in behavior. This could include loss of appetite, increased or decreased thirst, vomiting, or frequent urination. Any of these in combination with increased sleep are a cause for you to contact your vet.
Once contacted, your vet will help you determine what is bothering your Savannah. There are a number of things that could cause lethargy in cats from something as small as a stomach bug toas big as a life-threatening disease. Your vet, through tests and analysis, will be the only person able to make that determination. Either way, it is always best to contact them to be safe.
While you may think you just have one lazy Savannah sleeping around the house all day, they are in fact charging up. Think of all the energy your Savannah kitty has during their active hours and how exhausting it is just looking at them jumping, climbing, and pouncing. Plus, most of that sleep is a bunch of catnapping where they are still alert and ready to go at a moment’s notice.