Why Do Cats Sit On Laptops: Is It Good or Bad For Them?

A person is confused why his cat in sitting on the laptop
Written by Clair Chesterman

Cats have a peculiar affinity for laptops, often choosing them as their preferred resting place. Why do cats sit on laptops, though? Why use laptops? Surprisingly, there are a multitude of intriguing reasons behind this curious behavior.

7 Reasons Why Your Cat Like Sleeping on Your Laptop

Cats possess a unique fondness for laptops, driven by a variety of factors that make these devices irresistible to our feline friends.

Cats love warmth.

The heat emitted by a running laptop is remarkably appealing to cats. Their thermoneutral zone, the ideal temperature range for cats, typically falls between 85 and 100 degrees. This leads them to seek ways to stay warm from various sources, including lounging in the sun, snuggling in electric blankets, and, yes, resting on your laptop.

The warmth generated by a functioning laptop captivates cats, making it a magnet for their relaxation. This cozy environment is especially comforting in cooler surroundings.

Cats are attracted to your laptop’s scent.

Cat enjoys warmth from laptop

With four times as many odor receptors as humans, cats have a remarkable sense of smell. Our fingertips contain over a thousand sweat glands, producing significantly more perspiration than other body parts. While this sweat typically evaporates quickly, it can find its way to your laptop’s keyboard, leaving traces of your scent behind.

Your furry friend will pick up on this scent and feel a strong attraction to it. Anything that carries your aroma becomes intriguing to them, reinforcing their desire to be close to it.

Felines are territorial species.

Given their territorial instincts, cats often mark their domain with scent, even after they’ve left. They possess scent glands in various parts of their bodies, including their:

  • Paws
  • Cheeks
  • Lips
  • Forehead
  • Flanks
  • Tail

When cats rub against your laptop, they’re staking a claim, declaring it as part of their territory. This territorial behavior is why they can become agitated when you try to move the laptop, as it challenges their sense of ownership.

Cats are curious and interested in your screen.

Some cats find it amusing to observe laptop screens. In fact, cats can perceive the movements on a laptop screen, which piques their curiosity. Videos, music, movies, and images displayed on the screen all capture their attention. They’re keen to explore these fascinating stimuli, enhancing their cognitive abilities.

Cats want your attention.

Cats are inherently affectionate animals and desire your companionship. When you’re engrossed in your laptop, your cat may feel neglected. So, to regain your attention, they resort to perching on your laptop and positioning themselves between you and the screen. Many cat owners inadvertently encourage this behavior by petting or cuddling their cats.

Over time, felines learn that sitting on the laptop is an effective way to capture the attention and affection they seek from their human companions.

Cats love your keyboard

Cat is lying on a keyboard - Why Do Cats Sit on Laptops?

The keyboard, with its soft, flexible surface, is another laptop feature that entices feline curiosity. When your cat walks or lounges on it, the keys depress under their weight, almost like a memory foam mattress. The keyboard’s movements probably engage your cat’s mind similarly to their favorite toys and games.

Cats love to jump to elevated areas.

If you use your laptop on a desk, your cat might be compelled to jump up to find a higher vantage point. This behavior fulfills their innate need to gain altitude, granting them an excellent perch for observing their surroundings and monitoring activities.

This instinct is rooted in their survival tactics, as it allows wild animals to detect potential threats, predators, or prey, and offers them an advantage in escaping danger.

Is it Bad for Cats to Sit on Laptops?

For your feline friend, perching on your laptop is entirely harmless. However, it may lead to unintended consequences for you, such as typographical errors and work interruptions. Additionally, cat hair can accumulate inside your computer over time, necessitating more frequent cleaning of your device’s interior.

Why Do Cats Sit on Laptops – Bottom Line

While it’s not harmful for cats to sit on laptops, this habit can be distracting when you’re trying to work. It’s advisable to keep your feline companions away from your laptop to prevent potential damage to your device. Offering an alternative spot for your cat, such as a cozy heating pad or a designated resting area, can help redirect their attention away from the warmth emitted by your laptop, reducing the likelihood of cats sit on laptops.

RELATED: Can Cats See Phone Screens?


  • Clair Chesterman

    Clair is a professional cat breeder having her own cageless CFA and CCA Registered cattery & fostering company FluffyMeowPaws in Eugene, Oregon. Clair knows everything about multiple cat breeds and how to use the latest technologies to make the cat's life better.

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