I have a 15 year old cat who was doing this (mostly in the evenings) for a few years before I sought help. (I just thought all older cats did that). We tried pain meds, dementia meds, adjusting his thyroid medication dose and nothing helped until we tried prozac. The change has been amazing! 3 years ago
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I’m ordering ear plugs online right now! 4 years ago
Help anyone! we can’t get any sleep at all! my cat cries, bangs the bedroom door, scratches the carpet, jiggles the handle starting around 2 am and doesn’t stop until 7! last night we didn’t open the door or respond in order to start training him and not reinforce the bad behavior, but is there anything else we can be doing???? how long does it take or how much sleep are we going to be loosing….i would appreciate any advice on this! thanks so much! 5 years ago
and extra attention before bedtime, as well as not ever getting up for them if they howl before the alarm goes off seems to have finally worked. 5 years ago
Been feeding them later and giving them attention right before bed, which seems to be working somewhat. They often only try to wake us up at 6:30 vs. 4:30 now. Slow progress. 5 years ago
I wish I could say this is what I’m talking about. But seriously that guy has it easy. 5 years ago
I tried to play with the kitty last night. Really tried. But he just wanted to curl up and purr and drool and be petted.
So I go to bed and he’s obnoxious and locked out. Eventually shutting up around 12. then at 2 he was freaking out. I had the sence to realize that I’d forgotten to feed him before bed. Got up. Fed him. He was too busy eating to try to follow me back into the bedroom, but once he’d had his fill he spent another 20 minutes rattling the doors. (Boyfriend has been amazingly patient with this lately.)
Kitty did thankfully skip his 6:00 badness. 5 years ago
We both did stellar.
Somehow that didn’t keep me from over-sleeping by an hour! oops. 5 years ago
I hope no one is bored with these entries. They’re more for me to see patterns.
Last night I got myself sucked into the internet and neglected just about everything else. I didn’t play with the cat. I tried just before bed, but he wasn’t into it. He was not happy when I went to bed (late). Restless howling while in the bedroom, he’d occasionally leave the room and come back and continue howling. He seemed so demanding and insistant. I’d already determined that he had food and water and hadn’t wanted to play when I tried an hour ealier. I started getting worried becuase I’d neglected to clean the litter box yesterday and I just changed litters and sometimes he’s picky, maybe this new litter can’t go 2 days… So I got up at 2am to clean the litter box. When I walked through the living room the cat raced to his scratching post and started scratching. He gets treats for that, so I have him one. After that I went to bed and he followed and was good for a while. (Was it the treat that he’d be crying for?)
6:30 play time came and he was scratching my blankets and I put him out of the room. He was good for a bit, then howled and rattled the door knob from abou 7 to 7:15 when he OPENED THE DOOR! Oh man thats the worst thing possible. Now he knows its possible and is likely to try again. Really, wouldn’t care much if he know how to open it. Its the terribly loud racket he makes when he’s hitting the knob that keeps the whole house awake. When he got in he was super good and cuddly. 5 years ago
I tried. I tried so hard…
Before bed we played laser pointer. He got all tired out and seemed ready to cuddle before I started to go to bed. But he must have caught a second wind while I was brushing my teeth becuase he was scratching and howling and biting. When he bit me I put him out of the room and miraculously he didn’t attempt to get back in. Until 4 that is. He howeled and rattled the door knob off and on from 4 to 5 and then constantly from 5 to 5:30 when I got so fed up I opened the door and then sprayed him with the spray bottle when he got in the room. Its mean, I know, and give him attention that he wants, but it worked. He ran out and didn’t try to get back in! Around 6:30 I woke up again and realized that the cat had been being good for a whole hour so I opened the door and he eventually wandered in slept the rest of the morning hillariously cute streched out on his back with his legs up in the air. 5 years ago
So I’ve tried a buntch of things…ignoring my cats howls & running the risk of neighbours complaints, freezing my cat out (turning down the heat at night in this chilly climate so she wants to curl up in bed with me), playing with my cat and trying to tire her out before bedtime, talking to her rationally hoping that if there is any justice in this world that she will somehow know what I’m saying to her and stop her night time shenanigans, buying a cat tent for her to play in…and numerous other toys… and yet STILL last night she woke me up at least 5 times with her demonic howling!!!! I’m going on vacation next wk…I look forward to the peaceful nights sleep I’ll get, however I feel really really bad for my friend who’s looking after my cat at their house!! I wonder if she’ll do it with them? I’m definitely buying a laser light after reading some of the posts…that should kick play time into high gear! 5 years ago
I think he knows I’m gossiping about him, becuase the cat has been so good. It’s going to be another 2 weeks before another real challenge of locking him out all night when the boyfriend is over.
I went to bed and he just cuddled up, even without any play time at all. (Maybe becuase it was so late)
At 6:30 he got all annoying. He was scratching things so I showed him his post and he was polite enough to scratch it a couple times before going back to scratching the blankets. So I got up and showed him his food and that kept him occupied long enough for me to fall back asleep. Then he came into the room and was playing with my hair and bit me when I tried to stop him so I shut him out of the room. He didn’t try to get back in until right before my alarm went off. Then I had to leave the room so I hope he didn’t think I was opening the door because of his meowing. 5 years ago
He was a darling angel. Went to bed with me, despite very little playtime. There was no 6 am meow-fest. In fact, I slept through to 11am with no cat-related distractions. And when I got up he stayed there. In fact, its after noon now and he’s still sleeping on the bed.
I guess the vet wasn’t kidding yesterday when she said his vaccine boosters might make him lethargic. 5 years ago
Everything went wonderful and according to plan at night.
Morning meows and biting got him kicked out the room, but he didn’t even attempt to get back in. Late morning meows got me out of bed finally and yes, I did open the door to his cries, but if I hadn’t I would have been stuck in the bedroom all day. 5 years ago
We both did very good this time.
We rough-housed for a short time before I got ready for bed. When I was brushing my teeth he howling so instead of reading in bed like usual I read in the living room and played laser pointer with the kitty. I tried to engage him even after he seemed board with it and didn’t go to bed until after the kitty gave me a sign that he was ready to sleep: he curled up in my lap. I went to bed and he followed and was quiet and cuddly from the start. I didn’t even have to pick him up and put him on the bed!
He woke up at 6:30 on the dot and didn’t repond to my efforts to show him his food or to snuggle with him. He bit me so I had to put him out of the room. He howeled and rattled the door knob for at least 15 minutes, but I managed to fall back asleep. 5 years ago
There are two parts to this whole thing:
1. Get the cat tired out before bedtime.
2. Don’t encourage him to howl by giving him attention when he does.
I did poorly on both counts, eventually giving up on the second to work on the first.
I got home late, thinking there was no time for playing with the cat I went right to bed. Kitty was not locked out of the room, but was still howling at the walls (or the moon or god knows what) in the rest of the house. After 30 minutes I gave up on sleeping and went to the living room and played laser pointer and read my book until the cat seemed bored with playing. I’m not sure if that is encouraging him howling or not, since it wasn’t the “let me in the room” howling. The howling he does in the other parts of the house I can sleep through if I need to. Its the howling outside the bedroom door/rattling the door knob that are really unacceptable and that I must not encourage. By tiring him out before it got to that point I was hoping to avoid that really bad behavoir. I went back to bed but it still took two tries (of putting him on the bed) to get him to calm down and stop being a pain.
Then he was good until the usual 6am restlessness. As usual, I gave him attention by getting up and walking to the kitchen were his food is. I didn’t need to feed him, he had plenty of food, he just needs it pointed out to him (every morning). That usually shuts him up, but when he was done eating he came back into my room and was scratching on things. Again, typical, and per our routine I shut him out of the room in a failing attempt to save some of my furniture. Normally in the mornings he only spends a few minutes trying to get back in the room and then gives up (I think he gets distracted by birds chirping outside). But not today. Today he howled and howled. I gave in after 10 minutes and let him in, absolutly breaking every rule and encouraging him to howl at the door in the future. But I knew that he’d be cuddly when he got in, and I knew that I would miss my last 20 minutes of much needed sleep if I didn’t. 5 years ago
I believe this is evidence that he needs more excercise in the late evening. We played with the laser pointer right before bed time and he cuddled up almost right away.
Its tricky though, becuase if I exercise him too early in the evening, he’ll sleep before I go to bed and then want to play again when I’m trying to sleep. 5 years ago
I need to reopen this goal.
I had a temper tantrum, screaming/crying chasing the cat around with a spray bottle breakdown last night after the cat howeled and rattled the door knob from 10:30 (See, I”m trying to get to bed on time) until around 2.
This is why I’ve been late for work every day but one in 2008.
I need some damn sleep! 5 years ago
My cat is a 13 year old male cat. The past year he has taken to howling at night and is driving me crazy! I’ve had him for 11 years. He is neutered and in excellent health. 5 years ago
I’ve been ignoring him when the middle of the night meows hit. Noticed recently that he tends to cry more when the other cat is in the other room with the door closed. Leaving it open has helped a bit. At least he’s only starting a half hour before the alarm goes off, more often than not lately. 5 years ago
I’m losing my mind! I went to bed with earplugs in last night and yet I still bolted awake from the howling of my cat in the wee hours of the morning! It’s enough to drive me mental!!! Perhaps this is the reason I can’t stay in a relationship for more than 9 months?! Perhaps this is the reason that every man I date wants to murder my cat at night?!
By day she’s otherwise an absolutely healthy adorable friendly loving fixed 14 yr old tabby cat in excellent shape and spry as anything! At night she turns into this murderous blood curdling screetching meower!! I try to ignore her…but I’m afraid the neighbours are going to seriously complain as I live in a townhouse. Last night I tried spraying her…but by the time I got my scared tired butt outta bed, and ran all the way downstairs with the squirter… she was running around playing with her toys and thinking the shower was fun! and then waits for me to go back upstairs and back in bed to start it all over again!
She lost her 11 yr old feline play buddy back 11 months ago…she was a slight howler before that but only in the warmer months, after he died she became pretty bad and then over the months after the loss of her buddy….she calmed down again and was fine. Now she’s been escalating again for a couple months!
Can’t wait to knock this goal off my list!! 5 years ago
He’s been a bit better at night, but the howling when he’s hungry is still an issue. I think we need to work on more attention when he’s quiet. 5 years ago
I haven’t gotten decent sleep for ages. I’m going to try to ignore him completely when he’s meowing and only give him lots of attention when he’s quiet and see how that works. He keeps waking me up howling at 4:30 every morning, squirting and other stuff doesn’t do a thing. Doesn’t matter if he has food or not either. 5 years ago
That did the trick – he is so much calmer now! He doesn’t meow all the time and fuss and howl the way he used to. Loving him is so much easier! 6 years ago
I can hardly believe I’m checking this off. It took more than a full year of training, but I think we’re finally there. 6 years ago
So last night/morning around 4:30 am the cat starts meowing and howling and carrying on. He was in the room, door open and of course woke me up and I couldn’t go back to sleep.
I have no idea what got into him, but it was light out so maybe he thought it was morning? Hard to say, our routines have been way off lately.
Anyways, so after a half an hour (don’t know why it took me so long) I put him out in the hall and shut the door. He went off and I think was carrying on in the living room, but he didn’t try to get back in the room.
I’m not sure if this is example of progress or not. 6 years ago
He’s been good so much I can’t even get over it! I think this is really and truely done. He still howls and meows and whines in the mornings when I’m snoozing. “Hey, I heard that alarm, you’re not fooling me. 9 more minutes you think, lets see if you can sleep through me! Its cuddle time damn it and I”m not going anywhere until I’ve gotten a cuddle.”
I could close this and make another goal that says “get my cat to stop howling all morning”. But instead I will leave this one open a while longer 6 years ago
I’m almost ready to mark this as complete. He is so good. I don’t know how this happened but its wonderful. He’s spent three locked out night in the last week quiet as a mouse.
As soon as the alarmclock goes off he gets loud again. I know I should use that as motivation to work on my “get out of bed as soon as my alarm clock goes off” goal. But instead I just listen to the meowing for 9 (or 18 or 21) minutes. 6 years ago