Why cats like to sleep on dirty laundry

Sometimes cats like strange things. One of their habits that you may have noticed is lying on dirty laundry. When there are a lot of things in your laundry basket or on the floor of the room that it’s time to wash, for some reason the cat lies down on them. Let’s find out why this is happening.


When cats live as a group in the wild, they share resources with each other and also communicate the value of these resources by labeling them with smells. For natural reasons, dirty clothes can smell bad – but for a cat, this smell is of interest. In addition, your cat leaves its scent on your clothes to mark it as its own – this is an instinctive signal for other cats, marking the territory.

Children’s associations

When kittens are just born, they can’t see or hear, and they rely on their mother’s scent. If your cat is young, it may lie down on dirty laundry because of the memories of this smell. Although these odors may be unpleasant for a person, they are more important for a cat. Also, your cat may think that a pile of laundry looks like a “nest”. In the wild, cats create beds for themselves from feathers, hay, grass, and other soft materials.


If you have been away for a long time, your cat can sit on dirty laundry to feel comfortable and safe. Cats can feel anxious when they are alone – and they feel much calmer next to your smell. They can lie in a pile of laundry until you get home.

Is this normal behavior?

If your cat lies down on your clothes, this is a completely natural behavior. The main thing is to make sure that there are no chemicals or other substances in the dirty laundry that can harm your pet. And if the cat often uses and dirties your clean clothes – actively teach it to sleep on a couch or in a specially designated place.

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