Cats bring a lot of joy to our lives. Between their outlandish behavior that inspires many YouTube videos and their propensity to snuggle up on your lap just when you were going to head out the door, these adorable creatures are inherently lovable. However, one less-than enjoyable characteristic of cats is that they are nocturnal. It seems that once your head hits the pillow after a long day, your cat decides this is the perfect time to play with the door stopper, or meow in your face until you pet them. This makes sense: after all, while you were busy at work or school all day, they were having a leisurely, 8-hour nap. Plus, historically, they follow a crepuscular hunting schedule, which means that they are at their most playful at dawn and dusk. Not only that, their eyesight requires very little light when compared to humans, so while they can’t see in complete darkness, their little feline brains are able to see way more at bedtime than you can.
While it makes complete sense why your cat would be nocturnal, you also need to get your sleep. Therefore, there are certain things you can do to make your cat more active during the day, and therefore, sleepier at night.
While You’re At Work
Of course, no one has time to sit at home and play with their cat all day, as much as they wish they could. Therefore, it’s best to think of creative ways your cat can play while you’re out. Leave your cat with toys they can play with themselves, such as mice laced with catnip. Just like humans, cats get bored, so make sure to swap out these toys every so often so they remain stimulated. Another classic way to keep your cat entertained is with toys that dangle from a string so they have something to bat around.
In addition, you might consider leaving an interactive video on while you’re gone for the day. If your cat is the type who likes to watch TV with you, you can queue up a video specifically designed for cats, such as Video Catnip. Simply make sure that your cat is able to be eye-level with your TV so they can bat at the tiny creatures that crawl across the screen.
When You Get Home
When you get home from work, you may be quite tired, but it’s best to spend at least 15 minutes playing with your cat right when you arrive. This way, you can immediately expel all the energy they have been building up throughout the day. Some cats enjoy playing a game of chase, while others might want to play with the laser pointer. Alternatively, you may have a snuggly cat who just wants to rub on your legs and flop for a belly rub. Giving your cat some immediate attention will offset the chances of them acting out later in the evening.
During the Night
If your cat nibbles your toes at night or meows incessantly, you might want to shut them out of your bedroom at night. To prevent them from scratching at your door, put double-sided sticky tape on the outside. If they wake you up to feed them at a certain time, you might invest in an automatic feeder that opens at certain times of night.
Cats can be a lot to handle, but they’re worth the effort. If you are interested in meeting any of our senior cats for adoption, we would love to introduce you. Contact us to schedule a visit.