Is Your Cat Meowing At Night?
Cats tend to sleep for long hours. But when awake, they’re active. The activity period is believed to be nighttime, but that’s said to be a myth.
So, they can meow at night to wake you up.
Your cat meowing long after you’ve gone to bed could mean several things. It could be your kitty is hungry, wants to play or just seeks your company.
Cats below a year of age can drive you nuts at night, depriving you sleep.
The African wildcat, the cat’s ancestor, is nocturnal. Although cats are said to be nocturnal, they’re more of diurnal. That means they stay awake a lot during the day. However, cats wake up at least twice each night.
Even so, your kitty can learn to let you sleep in peace at night.
When a cat meows, it’s communicating with you. The level of meowing varies from cat to cat and breed. The great “talkers”, also known as Siamese cats, are an oriental cat breed that meows a lot.
If too much meowing irritates you, avoid keeping oriental breed of cats.
Some cats would love to constantly converse with you while others simply love hearing themselves meowing. If you don’t like how much your cat meows at night, find out why it’s meowing in the first place.
With the reason for meowing known, take the right measures to stop your cat from waking you up from sleep each night.
Reasons Your Cat Meows At Night
Just like humans, cats seek attention and meow to get that. They can meow at night for the following reasons:
- Illnesses such as kidney disease or overactive thyroid, leading to thirst, hunger or pain.
- Attention-seeking because felines don’t like being alone. Cats can meow to initiate petting, play or to have a talk with you.
- Meowing for food when hungry and sometimes when they see you walk into the kitchen.
- Meowing to greet you; can be a hard habit to break.
- Expressing loneliness if left to spend days alone.
- Stress can also cause your cat to meow. It can result from bringing a new pet or baby home, after moving or even due to a disease.
- Mental confusion or cognitive dysfunction due to aging. Your aging cat can cry non-stop at night for no good reason.
- Cats on heat that want breed can also meow at night. That happens if your cats aren’t neutered or spayed.
What To Do When Your Kitty Can't Stop Meowing At Night
- Visit a vet to rule out medical conditions as the reason your cat can’t stop meowing. Illnesses can cause discomfort and pain that see your cat meowing endlessly.
- Create time to play with your cat in the evenings when you get back home from work. Use the best cat toys and games for kitties to engage them in interactive play. Toys can include birds and mice while games include soft balls and ping pong balls. Engage your friend in play until it gets tired.
- Feed your cat heavily before bedtime to ensure it sleeps into the night. If that doesn’t help, get a timed-feeder to feed your cat at intervals. It’ll meow at the feeder when hungry instead of you. Just make sure you don’t overfeed your kitty.
- Keep your cat busy during the day with a variety of activities. Enrich your cat’s life with various activities during the day so that they’re tired and only want to sleep at night.
- Add other cats in the family if your kitty is social with other felines. It’s important to find your cat a feline it’s compatible with to keep each other busy, leaving no time to meow at night.
- If your cat is playful, it can mistake your sleepy, rolling eyes for play time. If it swats at your face while falling asleep, it might be time to get it out of your bedroom. If it keeps meowing at your door, it then becomes important to make your door area inaccessible.
- Place a vinyl carpet turned upside down (exposes knobby parts) outside the door and it won’t want to step on it to scratch on your door. Aluminum foil, a double-sided sticky tape or adhesive or a Scat Mat can keep the pet away from your door.
- The sound of a blow dryer or remote-controlled vacuum cleaner can also keep the feline away from your bedroom at night. It can go and meow elsewhere.
- If none of these tips work, you might need the services of a board-certified veterinary behaviorist (Dip ACVB) or a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist (CAAB or ACAAB). A vet can administer medication to help your cat calm down at night.
Ignore your cat when it tries to wake you up in the wee of the night with its meows. Well, unless you’re aware that it’s sick or hurt and thus in pain. Doing otherwise would be like rewarding your cat for a behavior you detest, waking you up.
Therefore, the cat will work harder each night to wake you up so you can reward it as you did the previous night. Even just waking up to scold your cat can work in its favor because it got the attention it wanted.
But, before you ignore your kitty, make sure you’re certain it’s meowing is for no apparent reason. Sometimes they can meow if trapped in a room, unable to reach its litter box or the water bowl is empty yet it’s dying of thirst. Check on the cat first before ignoring it to ensure the meowing is justified and if not, you’re ignoring it rightly.
Don’t shout, hit or spray water at the cat when it meows. Don’t punish it. Otherwise, it’ll dislike you or develop a distrust. You don’t want to ruin the relationship you’ve worked so hard to nurture.
Your cat will meow more and louder if it’s used to getting attention or rewards for doing just that. Expect the meowing to get worse as you ignore the cat’s bad behavior in the night. But, don’t give in.
Ignore meowing done for no apparent reason and reward quiet behavior. Eventually, it’ll give up meowing and behave.
Got a question with regards to your cat’s sudden annoying behavior? Contact Cat World to find out more information you can find helpful.
Jackie Johnston is the founder of Cat Word – a community of cat enthusiasts with a mission to spread as much knowledge as they can throughout the world on every aspect of raising and nurturing cats! In her spare time, Jackie loves reading and spending time with her two sons Logan and Christopher, and of course with their furry felines Simba and Max.