white cats sitting on laptops lie this one are warm

Cats Sitting on Laptops – What Gives?

Why are cats so…weird? Analysing what our cats are doing, or thinking….or plotting (!) has been a favourite pastime of pet parents since, well, forever! But with so many of us taking to our home desks during the last year, it’s become more apparent than ever that there’s one thing all cats across the world seem to love. No, not their humans. But their humans’ laptops. So what’s the deal with cats sitting on laptops?

Is it just that it’s warm? Surely not, when it’s sweltering hot outside? Maybe it’s that they know cats rule the internet. Fear not, cat lover. We’re here to solve the mystery of why your cat loves sitting on your laptop, more so than your actual lap.

So what’s up with cats sitting on laptops?

We know that cats have been keeping us entertained with their quirks for years now.  Slow-blinking at you, meowing at you to pat them while they eat (or is that just mine?), chasing things loudly only between the hours of 2am and 4am, and casually knocking over all your glassware and jewellery… whilst still being cautious enough to never knock over a drop of their food. That’s just understanding cat behaviour at its quirkiest.

When it comes to cats and laptops, science has (some) answers for us, thankfully. And so does the internet, as always.

Science’s opinion on why cats love laptops

According to Kristyn Vitale, an expert in animal behaviour, research cannot definitively say why cats like sitting on laptops. Not until they get to mind-reading, anyway. “Every cat is an individual, so we cannot assume that all cats engage in this behavior for the same reason,” she says.

Hmm, maybe science isn’t quite ready to take on the mysterious world of felines. The internet will have to step in, then!

What does the internet say?

Cat-owners across the globe have come to their own conclusions in the absence of scientific evidence. Admittedly, they might not be peer-reviewed…but we reckon they’re good hypotheses anyway:

  • Mirroring.  This theory says that cats like to be around your laptop because they’re mirroring your behaviour. TikTok user @bestcoastbaby went viral saying that if you get your cat their own laptop they’ll stop using yours. We’re not sure about that though; what if the cat only wants a MacBook Pro?  
  • Attention. Some people believe that because we’re now spending so many hours at home in front of our laptops, our cats have decided that laptops are the big attention thieves of the century. And if they’re sitting on it, they will automatically become the object of affection. Until they decide they’re too good for us again, anyway.
  • Warmth. This one is a little less exciting, but maybe the most believable. Laptops are nice little heating pads and your cat might just be wanting to warm that fluff of his. It seems unlikely in the New Zealand summer, but stranger things have happened. If your cat is all over your desk in winter, maybe they’d appreciate a little hot water bottle in return for jumping off the keys. Read our How to Keep Your Pet Warm in Winter article for more tips.

A cats’ second favourite thing? Insurance! (Don’t worry, we’re sure the humans are third)

It might not give your cat the same level of warm fuzzies as a laptop does, but pet insurance is a pretty good gift to show your baby that you still care.

Get a quote for pet insurance here. Just know that we won’t cover the cost of your cat’s very own laptop if you decide to go down that route.

(PS: If pet insurance doesn’t quite show the love enough for your cat, here’s a guide to ethical gifts for your pet...not that they’re spoilt or anything)

Cats sitting on laptops – over to you

Well, there you have it. Cats, as always, remain a mystery. Does your cat take over your laptop while you’re trying to work? Show us by sharing a photo on our Facebook page!

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