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So Much for a Cat Nap! (Why Your Cat May Keep Awakening You at Night)

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Party Marty, the wild and crazy cat that never slows down…except to sleep 10 hours a day:

Hey! Are you tired? Do you feel as if you did not sleep well last night? Is your cat to blame? That could be the case, and here are six reasons why your cat may keep waking you at night:

1.)     Illness. Even something as mild as a toothache can inhibit a good night’s rest for your cat. Other more sinister problems could be arthritis pain, hyperthyroidism, and high blood pressure. If your cat’s nighttime behavior seems suspicious, have your veterinarian exam him, especially if the nighttime awakening behavior becomes a repeated occurrence.

2.)    Boredom. Does your cat have nothing to do during the day and therefore sleeps away those hours, only to be lively and alert at two in the morning? Provide her with toys, window perches, or just unique ways of feeding, such as hiding small amounts of food throughout the house. Play with your cat in the hour before bedtime to tucker her out.

3.)    Habit. When your cat was a kitten, maybe you welcomed those unexpected night calls with some cuddling time. Such habits were reinforced, but you can reclaim your sleeping hours. When your cat comes in for that nightly visit, simply roll over and stay still. Eventually, the cat will get bored and lose interest.

4.)    Instant gratification. Your cat may be hungry and may have learned that immediately upon awakening, you fill the food dish. If this is your habit, your cat may be invoking the feeding process, despite the ungodly hour. Provide a healthy snack to your cat before bedtime and when you awaken in the morning, do a few of your own activities before filling the food dish.

5.)    Lighting. Cats see better in the dark and even a minimal amount of lighting can be disruptive. Adjust and minimize the lighting (don’t sleep with the TV on; avoid night lights) and give it about a week to have an effect on your cat’s behavior. For older cats that may have failing vision, however, this could be the cause of their restlessness and a soft light will help for improved nighttime vision.

6.)    Harsh reactions. Attention, whether negative or positive, could reinforce your cat’s attention-seeking behavior. Instead of getting grumpy or upset when she awakens you, simply remain silent. After a while, the lack of a response from you will signal to her that this is no time to bother you.

Thanks to for this great information!


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