After being a proud and happy cat owner for 10 years, you learn a lot about cats and their behavior. My finicky pal George initially had many behavioral issues that needed to be addressed. One of them was his nighttime activities. George would actively roam the house at night and sleep during the day. He would scratch at the door, meow, eliminate and scratch around in his litter and bat his toys and anything else he could get his paws on. His noise making would wake me up at night and keep me from falling back asleep. After consulting with a veterinarian and excluding medical conditions, I tried various things to get my nocturnal cat to be quiet at night. Maybe what I did might also help you.
Get a Cat Friend
Although getting George a buddy to play with didn’t work for me, the vet did state that it might keep him busy during the day, and tire him enough, so he’d sleep at night. However, George didn’t like the cute, little black kitty that I tried to introduce him to. He was more stressed and wouldn’t allow the new kitty anywhere near him or his territory. Eventually, I had to return the kitty to the adoption foundation where I had also adopted George. It was back to the drawing board for me.
Increase Daytime Activities
Rather than allowing George to sleep during the day, I would wake him up several times and play games with him. I would have him chase toys, scratch his cat tree and jump around. I figured that increasing his exercise during the day, might motivate him to sleep at night. I kept doing this consistently for about two weeks, in the hopes to reset his internal clock. I even invested in some new toys and an outdoor bird feeder to keep him active during the day.
Change Feeding Times
George had unlimited access to his food, until his nighttime noise making started. This is when the veterinarian recommended that I switch to periodic feedings with the last feeding right before I went to bed. He stated that similar to babies, cats tend to sleep after they eat. He didn’t have to tell me this twice and I slowly started feeding George later in the day, so eventually, his last meal would be before bedtime.
Increasing George’s activities during the day and switching his feeding times stopped his nighttime noise making. It took some time for him to adapt to the changes, but now he’s quiet and napping at night. He still wakes up quite early in the morning, but at least he doesn’t wake me up in the middle of the night.