Cats sleep about 18 hours a day and take multiple cat naps to accomplish this feat. They’re also nocturnal, which means they’re up and about when most of us are trying to sleep. Single kittens and feline adolescents tend to be the most active at night. Here’s what to know to try to keep a cat’s nature from interfering with your sleep:
- Try to combat overactivity by wearing the felines out. Engage them in interactive play an hour or so before bedtime.(Find appropriate toys at Tri-County Humane Society's store. All proceeds go back to the animals.)
- Give them a late-night snack.
- Make the bedroom as dark as possible. Cats can’t see in total darkness. They can get around in low light very well, though.
- If cats are just too playful, they might need their own playroom at the end of the home. This nighttime isolation is typically only needed until the cat is older.
- Sometimes two is better than one. A second young cat with a similar activity level will give the first one an exercise partner.
- If the cat starts tapping you, wanting food before your wake-up time, ignore him or her. If you give in, that just teaches them that they can get their way by harassing you. Roll over, pull the covers over you – do whatever you can to give them the message that this behavior will not be rewarded.
- To keep a hormonally charged female from making night noise, spay her!
- If it’s an older cat that’s being restless, consider taking him or her to the vet. A health issue may be behind the ruckus.
Source: Adapted from information by Jacque Lynn Schultz, CPDT