Why Do Cats Like to Sleep in the Sink?

Until I adopted my cat Mittens, I had never had a cat who liked to sleep in the sink. One day I went into the bathroom and found her in the sink, and it was the cutest thing I’d ever seen.  I hadn’t thought much about since, until I recently saw another photo of a cat in a sink that someone posted on Facebook. 

Cats are known for avoiding water, so why would they gravitate to a spot where water is a key feature? There are several reasons why a cat would sleep in the sink.  For one, sinks are cool.  Not as in hip cool, but temperature cool.  Sinks are made of porcelain, and on a hot day, a cool sink is a perfect place to hang out.  Cats are known to gravitate toward cool surfaces when it’s warm.  My apartment has concrete floors, and all of the cats that have lived here (Crispy, Mittens, and Glitter) have enjoyed stretching out on the cool concrete in the summer.  Bathroom and kitchen tile floors are a well-known favorite for cats as well.  Bathtubs are cool to the touch, but cats seem to prefer the sink.  Which brings me to the second possible reason…

Cats like their bodies being snug and cradled, and a round sink is ideal for that.  It’s instinctive.  Snug and cradled is how they sleep when they’re in a litter, with pressure on their bodies. I think that’s why Mittens enjoyed sleeping in this big bowl that we had on our dining room table in our old apartment, and in her round cat bed.  She had a thing for round spaces that cradled her.  

The last reason I can think of is height.  Cats like to look down their noses at us, especially from high elevations.  Sinks are always off the ground, so the appeal makes sense. 

Regardless of the reason, it’s a charming habit, one of those quirky things that makes us appreciate them more.  There’s no reason to worry about it or discourage it.  

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