Does your cat like to wake you up throughout the night? Or maybe, they insist on having their breakfast at 3:30 am. Cats are naturally crepuscular, which means they are most active at dusk and dawn. Unfortunately, those are times when humans typically like to sleep.
If your cat wakes you up at night, all hope is not lost on ever getting a good night’s sleep again. Luckily, there are many things you can do to help convince your cat to let you snooze all night. Here are our top tips.
#1 – Tire your cat out in the evening
Doing at least one intense interactive play session with your cat in the evenings can help wear your cat out before bedtime and make them more likely to sleep – and allow you to sleep also. Wand toys are a great way to stimulate your cat’s prey drive and make them tired before bed time.
#2 – Feed your cat right before bed
Cats usually like to sleep right after eating, so feeding them right before you go to bed should help buy you at least a few hours of peace and quiet. Alternately, you can buy a timed feeder that will dispense food to your cat one or more times during the night (or in the wee hours of the morning). That way, when they get hungry, they learn to wait by the automatic feeder instead of waking you up to be fed.
#3 – Keep your cat busy during the day
If you work during the day, you might want to invest in toys, food puzzles, and other ways to keep your cat engaged and awake during the day so that they will be more likely to sleep during the night. If they are sleeping all day out of boredom when you’re at work, then it’s natural that they’ll be energetic and ready to play when you are ready for bed.
#4 – Consider adding another cat to your family
Adding another cat isn’t the best option for everybody, but giving your cat a buddy to play with while you’re asleep could help save your sanity – or it could mean twice the amount of midnight zoomies!
#5 – Keep them out of the bedroom
Many cat parents love sharing their beds with their cats. But if yours simply won’t let you sleep, it may be time to keep him out of your room. There are also tricks you can try to prevent active kitties from pawing at the door all night. Consider placing something on the floor in front of the door to prevent them from getting close enough to swat at it. This might include aluminum foil, double-sided tape, or a Scat Mat.
#6 – What not to do
If your cat wakes you up at night, the worst thing you can do is give them any sort of attention. Don’t yell at them, don’t swat at them, and certainly don’t get out of bed to feed them – that just teaches them that waking you up gives them what they want! It is incredibly difficult to ignore a cat that wants to wake you up, but your cat will learn that they can’t get attention that way.
(H/T: WebMD Pets)