- Why Does My Cat Wake Me Up To Be Petted?
- How To Stop My Cat From Waking Me Up To Be Petted?
Most cat owners would not miss a single opportunity to pet their cats. They will vouch that petting their feline babies is the most rewarding experience of owning a cat.
It would be criminal not to show them affection when they purr or meow and hop onto your lap. But what if your cat demands this love in the middle of the night when you’re sound asleep?
Even the most affectionate owners would be slightly annoyed when their cat wakes them up to be petted.
But why do cats do that in the first place? Let’s find out!
Why Does My Cat Wake Me Up To Be Petted?
Cats Are Nocturnal
Unfortunately, cat biology works the exact opposite to humans. We need a good night’s sleep, but cats are naturally most active in twilight.
The more independent breeds choose to wander out in the night. However, indoor cats will turn to their only playmate – you.
If your cat demands attention in the daytime, chances are it would need it at night too. So, when it wakes you up at 4 in the morning, all it needs is some love.
Cats Are Light Sleepers
Cats require up to 16 hours of sleep. You might find your fur baby fast asleep for the best part of the day, but their nocturnal design makes them light sleepers at night.
Even a glimmer of sunlight will stir it from slumber. Also, being a predator, your cat is susceptible to sounds.
The chirping of birds or even honking of a car will wake it right up. Now that your cat is wide awake at the crack of dawn, naturally, it will wake you up too.
Cats Are Mini Predators
Your feline may look tiny and adorable, but it does have predatory instincts. Cats are, in essence, miniature lions.
Naturally, they would hunt like one too. Cat’s eyes adapt quickly to the dark, giving them an advantage over their prey between dusk and dawn.
Therefore, they are wired to hunt in the night. Sadly, that means you might wake up to your cat bouncing up and down your bed.
Cats Get Bored Too
Among other things, cats and humans have one thing in common – we tend to get bored. When all the activity of the day dies down and you head to bed, your kitty may start to feel lonely.
After all, it is their waking hours. It is when they need play and stimulation the most. Not getting its fill by running around or toppling things over, your cat decides to wake you up to play.
Your Cat Knows You Will Respond To Its Wake-Up Calls
Cats are intelligent creatures. They are easy to train and pick up on patterns faster than you can imagine.
There may have been a couple of occasions when you woke up mid-sleep to cuddle your cat. Maybe when it was a kitten or in its initial days with you.
Unfortunately, that has taught your cat that it is appropriate to wake you up to be petted.
Your Cat May Be Ill
Certain medical conditions may cause your cat to be restless at night. Even a mild toothache or upset stomach could inhibit a good night’s sleep.
If it’s unusual for your cat to wake you up at odd hours to be petted, be wary of this behavior. It is especially true for older cats.
As your cat ages, it may be inflicted with ailments such as high blood pressure, arthritis, or hyperthyroidism, among other diseases. If this behavior change persists, visit the vet immediately.
After all, a healthy cat means both you and your feline creature can get a good night’s sleep.
Your Cat Just Loves To Be Petted
Cats may not always welcome humans in their personal space at all times. But some cats love a good petting session when they want one.
You may find that your cat is most needy when it has just woken up. As mentioned earlier, your feline friend may be stirred from sleep at early hours.
And if it craves pets at that time, it means you’re about to lose your precious sleep.
On the upside, as soon as you begin to pet it, your cat might drift right off to sleep. But unfortunately, it will leave you wide awake.
How To Stop My Cat From Waking Me Up To Be Petted?
If you want to alter your cat’s behavior, you will have to initiate some changes. There are many ways to get started.
Check out these suggestions to avoid your cat’s nighttime wake-up calls.
Use The Four-Step Cycle
Putting your cat back in its natural cycle works wonders for most cat owners. Being a mini predator, your furry friend needs to hunt, feed and groom before falling asleep.
It means loads of playtime right before bed. Following these guidelines will help you train your cat or kitten to not wake you up in the night.
- Let it scavenge on its own. You can give your cat an engaging toy to re-create the experience of hunting prey in your home.
- After all that playtime, your cat is sure to be ravenous. Make sure your cat has a good meal.
- Brush, bathe, and clip your cat’s nails to show it how much you care. Or let it groom itself.
- After completing the above activities, your cat is guaranteed to take a nap. Create a quiet and calm atmosphere to induce sleep. You could pet or cuddle your cat to make sure it feels warm and safe.
Remember that your adult cat may take some time to re-adjust to this routine.
Keep Your Cat From Getting Up
You can install dark blinds in your room to prevent your cat from waking up. Veterinarians suggest switching off your night light if your cat sleeps in the same room as you.
Even the slightest of light or commotion could disturb your cat’s snooze time.
Keep Something For Distraction
If your cat does wake up at night and has nothing to do, it will surely wake you up for attention. You must engage it in something that will quench its thirst for activity.
The following options could be a solution for you.
Install an automated feeder in your room. A midnight snack is sure to be more satisfying than waking you up.
Stash Toys Around The House
Another way to keep your cat busy would be to leave toys around the house. It works best if your cat needs more hunt time while you sleep.
Cat puzzles would be a great way to keep them occupied for bored cats. These will keep your fur baby entertained long enough for you to get a few extra hours of sleep.
Cats are intelligent animals. They can get attuned to their human routine very quickly.
However, if your cat misbehaves, it may be because it never got the training it needed. Your cat waking you up at night may be a nuisance.
But with some patience and training, you can change this behavior. I wish you and your cat a proper goodnight’s sleep!
Lucy is a real-time contributor to Purrfect n’ Pawesome, along with being a freelance writer to various pet forums and platforms. She started writing professionally in the year 2016. Earlier, she enjoyed her community life as a pet rescue volunteer and offered boarding services to pet owners. Her extensive experience in the pet field is now the basis for her writing at this site.
She loves to collect animal facts from around the globe and then transform them into amazing stories for her readers. For Lucy, the mission is to bring pet love to every home and equip the pet parents with the required useful and authentic information to nurture their pet accordingly.
She lives with her two cats and a shepherd mix, whom she loves the most. Despite her extremely busy life, she spends some time with wildlife and outer space to relax her mind and enhance her observation.
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