Adopting a new kitten can be an exciting event for the whole family. But there is something that others won’t tell you when you bring little Fluffy home…Kittens/young cats become little night terrors as soon as everyone is in bed at night!
Cats sleep most of the day away, so this means they become fearless night hunters and early morning risers.
We have come up with some tips on how to manage your night prowling kitty so you can get some sleep!
- Feed a meal right before you go to bed
- Easier said than done, but if you can hold off as long as your kitty will allow it, cats usually have a rest after a meal.
- Hide treats around the house outside of your bedroom when your cat wants to hunt at night
- Play with them right before you go to bed
- Try to tucker your kitty out right before bed; use a laser pointer, play ball, etc.
- Spay/neuter your cat
- Around 6 months of age, you will notice your cat start to yowl during the night and/or trying their best to get outside.
- Spaying/neutering will (usually) calm them down so that they don’t have the desire to seek a mate
- Purchase an automatic feeder
- Most of the automatic feeders can be programmed to give a certain amount of food at different times throughout the day
- Having the feeder give some food to your cat during the night and early in the morning will have them preoccupied with the feeder and not at waking you up for food
- Get them used to a harness to have them safely outside during the evening to play themselves out
- Try to keep them busy during the day
- Purchase a cat tree/perch and place it by a busy window, or place a bird feeder outside so your cat can bird watch during the day
- Rotate toys so something is always new to do
- Once your cat has played out a toy, switch it out for an older one, or leave a paper bag out when you leave the house, a new box with some cat nip inside, etc.
- Make sure there isn’t a medical issue
- If your older cat that was well behaved during the night previously, now starts yowling or waking you up during the night, it could be due to a medical issue that should be seen by a Veterinarian
- Try to ignore them
- We saved the hardest advice for last because let’s face it: Cats will do almost anything to annoy you enough to get up (like knock things off the shelf, lick/chew your hair, bite your feet, wake the dog up, etc.)
- Once they know that they won’t get their way (may take weeks of tough love) they will start to realize that you are not their source of play/feeding during the middle of the night.
- Or……shut them out of the bedroom
Hopefully some of these tips will help you and your kitty get a better nights rest! Some tips will work better than others but the main key is to keep your cat busy during the day or right before bed so that they get into a routine that your bed time- is their bed time!