How to stop deaf cat standing outside my room at night and yowling his head off?!(23 Posts)
I am getting so frustrated at this bloody cat! He's 6 months old and I've had him since he was 2 months. At random times throughout the night (2am, 3am, 4am, whenever he feels like it-am!) he will walk up and down the landing upstairs and MEOW his head off. Except since he's deaf he doesn't hear it and it sounds like somebody is being killed; long, distorted, nightmare inducing meows and yowls at top volume, if I am in the garden in the day and he's inside and he yowls like this I can hear him it's so loud!
Obviously since he's deaf I can't shout at him to shoo him off, my other cats have never done anything like this so I think maybe he doesn't realise he's actually doing it since he can't hear it? As soon as I open my bedroom door and he sees me then he will run downstairs at the speed of light, I normally stomp-run towards him to scare him away so he buggers off and stops but he will be at it again an hour later. Literally every night since I got him I have been woken and had to stop him at least twice a night, and it takes me ages to fall asleep so I am losing loads by having to do this. If I ignore him he just keeps doing it forever, just as I am about to fall asleep again each time he starts back up, which is why I started doing the stomp run thing as it's the only thing that scares him into stopping
There's no door on the stairs so he can come up and down as he pleases, litter box is also upstairs in the bathroom otherwise the dogs would eat it, there's nowhere else to put it. He comes up and down to use the litter but seems to come up at separate times for his yowling session
I've tried caging him downstairs but then he yowls even louder and still wakes me up, I tried to train him like a dog by just ignoring him til he got used to it but he was constantly screaming to get out. Also I put a small litter tray there but he just got mess all over and one of the dogs is in that cage during the day so not practical to have to keep cleaning it, I wouldn't have time. I tried water spray bottle but he loves water, he jumps in the bath when I am washing my hair so it doesn't phase him at all. I don't know what other methods I can use to tell him to stop and he seems to know that the yowling is bad because when he sees me he knows he will be told off and stops and runs away. If he sees me coming out of my room like that in the day time he doesn't care so I'm sure he knows what he's doing at night!
This turned into quite the novel, sorry! Anyone who manages to read it, how do I stop this crazy yowling?
He's achieving what he is trying to do - attract your attention! If you can bear it ignore him, do NOT open your door. Eventually he will accept failure and wander off. It may take a few nights but it should work!
In your post you refer to the dogs eating the contents of the cat's litter tray - Thank you for this; I am so relieved to learn that my dog is not the only one with this horrid habit!!!
I am sorry but I really did chuckle at your description of your deaf cat. He sounds absolutely lovely, unique and endearing. Of course I am not the one listening to the midnighthowling though and I can appreciate it must be very annoying. I can only suggest ignoring him for a week or so, containing him to the kitchen. I realise you have litter/dog problem with this option though.
Take him to bed with you - he wants to be close and safe.
Our 6 month old non deaf cat does this too but I end up getting up and shutting her in the kitchen at some point between 3-6am depending on the time she starts meowing. My door is open but she likes to try and get into DDs room.
I'm with Cozie here - sounds like he wants to be with you. Is that an option at all or would you be bombarded by a hoarde of 4 legged friends?
Open door a crack. Water pistol/ spray bottle of water. Spray. Close door.
I have shared my home with many cats who have received this treatment. They have learned quickly with no ill effects on affection, etc. Recidivism rates are low.
Is he neutered yet? (Forgive me if you said and I overlooked it.)
I agree, he wants a snuggle at night,
Is he allowed on your bed at night? I think he wants to be with you?
My cat does exactly the same thing, except he's extremely old, and I think a bit senile as well as deaf.
Do you feed the cat as soon as you get up? If so, he might have come to associate you getting up with him getting fed. I used to feed my cat twice a day: once as soon as I got up, and again in the evening. He would yowl in the few hours before feeding time. I cut back to feeding him once a day (although he always has biscuits available) and do it at 9am, so that he doesn't try to get me out of bed with his noise.
Agree that letting him in the bedroom might work. This doesn't work with my cat, because he just seems to get confused and sits on the bed yowling, before eventually going downstairs.
I have never found methods like water spray to be successful.
The best solution is to learn to live with it. My cat always yowls at odd moments throughout the night, and I tend to sleep through it now.
Sorry in the late reply I totally forgot I had posted this thread
He can't be in the bedroom with me as I have a tortoise in there who has an open table, meaning the cats can jump up and get to it very easily, also since they aren't used to being in the bedroom I suspect they would be knocking everything over and tryig to be Spiderman investigating everything
I will have to put more effort into ignoring him but so far when I tried he just does not stop. He just does it on and off for hours, whereas if I stomp to him he stops for good that night (mostly!) not sure if my ignoring skills will be up to scratch or if I'll wanna strangle him
You have a tortoise in your bedroom with you? Is it hibernating?
It does sound like you might have a few too many animals Hubble.
And Cozie no he isn't neutered yet, if you asked that to suggest he might be.. horny, due to lack of a better word, he's been doing it since he was 2 months old so I think it is just for attention. After reading this back I sound rather blunt but don't mean to be, sorry!
The bedroom is the only place that is a cat free zone hence tortoise is in there. It's an indoor tropical tortoise, it doesn't hibernate. Not sure what quantity of animals has to do with yowling cat though - I wouldn't want any of the cats in my bedroom even if I were tortoiseless as explained for Spiderman cat reason above
How many cats/other animals do you actually have and how big is the household?
I think that this may be a situation where his deafness is important because it sounds to me as if he's frightened at night. I understand that deaf cats can be a problem in that they don't always know when they're yelling loud but everything that you've said, particularly in your OP, gives the impression, perhaps wrongly, that you're trying to quell him into submission.
How much love and attention do you give him every day?
Sorry - x post.
You need to have him neutered directly because he's definitely of an age for it and the last thing you need is raging hormones contributing to your situation.
Hubble quantity of animals in a restricted area has an impact on those animals mental well being. For example from just what you have told is here it sounds as though bedrooms are cat free zones in your house and downstairs you have a dog or dogs.
Perhaps your yowling cat is struggling to find an area in the house that he/she feels safe and is exhibiting anxiety symptoms in the night.
Having the animal neutered could definitely help as they are naturally nocturnal hunters and most will get aroused in the early hours and want to be let out. If it's a security thing with your cat then I concur with everyone else that it might be looking for some human company.
I live in a decent sized 3 bedroom house, only me and DP live here. There's our bedroom that is cat banned, a room with pet rats in (in cages obviously), also cat banned room to not stress either animal out. Then an office room upstairs which cats can go in. Downstairs is living room, dining room and kitchen. In living room there is a massive cat stand (6 feet tall and about 6 feet long too) but they have access to all the rest of the house too. 3 cats, 2 dogs and the tortoise besides the rats. Dogs n cats get on fine. Dogs sleep in bedroom at night and so cats have house to themself
When I am back from work I walk the dogs (aswell as before work), and for the evening after tidying house I sit watching TV or reading while playing or cuddling with cats. If I go to computer in the room upstairs all cats are generally hanging about or on my knee, would have thought they definately get enough attention
Got to rush now or will miss bus for work! Hence poo ish reply
I will be getting him neutered in the next month or so so that he doesn't start marking - I just thought you meant that maybe hormones made him yowl but he had been doing it from very young.
whenever I get home from work her curled up in the same few spots and fast asleep (and stays that way a while since he can't hear me coming home ) so he must feel secure to be able to sleep then, and that's with 1 of the dogs downstairs during the day, caged though. He naps next to me on the sofa when I'm home or on the cat stand alone or cuddling with one of the dogs, so I don't know why he can't sleep in the same spots at night as he does when I am at work. He seems very vocal in general though, when he's hungry or excited or when he sees me after waking up he meows like crazy, none of the other cats do
Regarding using the stomping as the scare method - it is like 3am and I'm half asleep and want to go back to sleep so started and continued to use it as it was the only thing that worked. He still follows me round and doesn't seem to love me any less in the day because of it. When I first got him he was in a dog cage in my bedroom (have one there and one under the stairs) and he was meowing and yowling all the time there too and could see me
Brainwave - Maybe as someone else suggested he is hungry and thinks when I am up he can eat? They're normally on wet food and dry when I am in a rush, I left dry food downstairs last night and there was no yowling from him. Bit of food still left this morning - maybe he does yowl thinking I will get him food?
Can the tortoise go in the office and the cat sleep on end of your bed? If my kitten has enough activity during the day and plays enough he settles down in bed from midnight onwards. (Unlike last night when he attacked my sleeping form because I hadn't played with him enough during the day so he went crazy around bedroom) I bet if you allowed him on your bed he wouldn't yowl at night.
Also wanted to add last time he was in your bedroom he was in a dog cage, no wonder he was howling, no kitten or cat likes to be trapped.
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