Cuddly Kitty or Nighttime Monster: Cat Nighttime Habits Explained
A couple of human toes sticking out of the sheets at 2 a.m. might seem innocent enough, but for some of our furry friends, it’s time to pounce! If you have a cat, it’s likely that a similar incident may have happened to you while you were in the dead of sleep. Perhaps, their target isn’t your feet. It might be your head or your hand, or your cat may choose to sprint through the house, knocking books from shelves and vases from tables. Either way, the night can be a playground for your kitty. It may be frustrating, so it’s important to know why your cat turns into a monster of the dark.
Cats are the distant relatives to wild cats that are mostly nocturnal, which means they are primarily active during the nighttime hours. Domesticated cats are also considered crepuscular, which means they are mostly active during dawn and dusk. If your cat is largely an outdoor cat or had spent much of it’s time outdoors in its youth, being up at night is a habit developed in order to hunt its prey, which is mostly active at night.
Younger cats and kittens might be excessively disruptive at night as they have a lot of energy to burn. If your cat doesn’t get enough exercise or playtime during the day, it will use the nighttime for those reasons as it is more instinctual and natural to them. Many people don’t arrive home until the evenings, so it’s possible that your cat is responding to your schedule and wants to interact with you once you’re home. For some kitties, another reason for their late time activity might be the exact opposite. Sometimes fearful cats will hide during the day and only come out at night when they feel safe.
Okay, so now you understand why it happens, but you’re still tired… or maybe your toes are tired! The good news is cats, being highly intelligent creatures, can learn new habits. It’s important to give your cat a long, intense playtime session. This can help tire them out, so they are more likely to sleep throughout the night. Feeding your cat its main meal just before your bedtime can help, too. Cats tend to sleep when their tummies are full. Getting a second cat may also convince your kitty to leave you well alone because likely the two cats will play with each other instead of with your toes. Take these steps to help transform your monster back into an adorable kitty you love!