It’s common for the cat to meow at night, but if the problem persists, it’s important to take the right steps to make sure there isn’t an underlying problem. Indeed, a cat that meows at night can sometimes do so for unsuspected reasons. We will see in this article all the reasons that can lead your cat to meow at night.

Cat meowing at night: The main reasons

If your cat is making noise at night while meowing, ask yourself why it is doing this. There are several main reasons a cat may exhibit this behavior at night. Here’s everything you need to know about each of them.

Cats are naturally more active at night

The cat is a crepuscular animal, which is often restless at the time when you go to bed. This habit is linked to its predatory instinct which it has in the wild and which it retains despite its domestication.

However, this is not inevitable, because dusk is hunting time and if you feed him a little before sleeping, he will be less likely to wake you up with his meows.

Dawn meows are often linked to a cat’s hunger and general needs.

You can therefore also make sure that he can go out at night, especially in summer, so that he can hunt and no longer be hungry in the morning, cats who have access to the outside keep this hunting instinct because they often do, even during the day.

He is hungry or thirsty

Most common reason for nocturnal meowing in cats. A cat likes to eat little and regularly because its digestive system is different from ours. They need to eat and drink at night to be able to sleep well.

But be careful, if he asks even if he has an empty stomach, it is essential not to respond to his whims.

Ideally, place intelligence games where you can hide food so that they can occupy him and allow him to eat only if he really wants to and not by reflex.

Your cat is bored

A cat that meows while you’re sleeping may be doing so because it’s bored and hasn’t exercised enough during the day. He seeks attention and tries to get yours by waking you up at night.

You can offer him games to stimulate him and take care of him so that he no longer demands this attention but be careful not to give in to all his whims either.

For example, a ball with which he can play on his own, or even a laser pointer or a jet of water, there is no shortage of solutions to occupy him. You can even offer him a game that works his animal instinct by stimulating him when he seeks to eat by a mechanism that makes feeding a little more difficult to allow him to put himself in « hunter » mode.

If your cat has access to the outdoors, letting him roam in nature will be enough to get him to exercise enough during the day.

meowing kitten

Your cat is old

Meowing at night can also be a sign of aging in a cat that can leave it disoriented, cognitive dysfunction syndrome is directly linked to the effect of aging on the brain and nighttime meowing is one of its symptoms.

Outdoor cats don’t like to feel trapped

If your cat is an outdoor cat, he may feel confined and would like to go out to exercise, this is especially the case in summer and spring. Again the cat flap is the best solution.

He is in heat

If your cat is not neutered, he may meow at night because he is very excited and needs to breed. You can then sterilize it or let it out, but it is not recommended if it is a female.

A neutered cat will be calmer and you can ask your veterinarian for advice before making your decision.

Overactive thyroid or kidney disease

If your cat is meowing frequently at night for no apparent reason, there may be an underlying problem and consulting the vet will be necessary if all you’ve done hasn’t changed anything. Old cats are often affected by these pathologies which should never be taken lightly.

It’s too hot or too cold

Make sure he is in a temperate or slightly warm place so he can sleep without asking to sleep with you at night.

Cats like heat, as long as it doesn’t dry them out, and in winter he will always try to sleep in a comfortable place.

He is nervous

Cats are routine animals that are extremely sensitive to change, taking up to a month to adapt to their new surroundings when you move house.

Anything that changes his lifestyle is not welcome and he has to get used to it. A good way to achieve this is to take care of him and make him feel at home as soon as possible, for example with plug-in perfume diffusers that emit a reassuring smell.

Also make sure that he has his own environment to live in and especially to sleep in.

He is sick or in pain

Your cat may be sick and may meow to show pain, if he seems weak, take him to the vet as he probably has a medical condition. If you see him having trouble moving then get him taken to the vet quickly and especially if no injury is apparent as it may be internal bleeding.

my cat meows

How to solve this problem ?

To do the maximum so that the cat no longer meows at night, we advise you to apply all the following tips to ensure that your cat does not wake you up while you sleep.

These tips are general and will in any case improve the life of your cat, in addition to helping him to stop meowing during the night.

Reset the cat’s biological clock

As we said, cats are crepuscular and sometimes nocturnal beings. And for him to stop his bad habits, restore his biological clock is necessary, here is all you need to do to achieve this:

  • Provide him with toys  : He will be able to exert himself when you are not there and will thus be more ready to sleep after dark. The cat wheel, for example, will allow him to exercise easily and independently.

  • Play with him before sleeping  : So that he is able to sleep easily. Playing games that will get him worked up so he’s tired enough to sleep fast and long.

  • Feed him in the evening  : So that his hunting instinct does not wake him up to go hunting and his empty stomach does not wake him up.

Make sure he has everything he needs

A cat must always have something to eat or drink because otherwise it will come to complain, and even more so if you get up to feed it. So make sure he can eat and drink without you being there.

Clean the litter box regularly

By changing the litter box weekly, your cat will be able to defecate in a clean place and won’t bother you anymore to provide him with a clean place. Daily pickup is also required.

Play with him

Some cats feel lonely when you’re not around and crave attention because they hate loneliness and the interaction will calm them down.

You can also let him out, if possible, so he can see other cats or take a second one so he doesn’t spend the day alone.

Use night lights

A night light is very useful for older cats with vision problems or dementia. He will feel less fearful and more confident and will no longer meow at night.

The night lights make it easier to reassure him and put him to sleep.

Don’t answer him

If your cat acts like this out of sheer whim despite your best efforts, don’t pay attention to stop it. It can take up to two weeks for your cat to completely stop meowing.

Go to the vet

If the meowing persists, take steps to ensure there are no underlying health conditions and the risk of worsening symptoms.

If your cat is showing symptoms of weakness in addition to these nocturnal meows, there is most likely a health problem.

Go see a cat behaviorist

If your cat is acting erratically and misbehaving despite your best efforts, a cat behaviorist can help you come to his aid and get him back to normal behavior.

cat meowing at night

Special cases

There are many special cases in which your cat meows at night. Here are the main ones:

Old cat meowing at night

He may do this out of habit, but if he doesn’t, he may have dementia, as we saw earlier.

An old cat should always be monitored, check for symptoms and get a consultation if you have any doubts.

Cat meowing outside at night

Your cat probably wants to come home. He may also try to communicate with other cats, especially if he is in heat.

You can install a cat flap so that he stops bothering you when he wants to come inside.

Cat that meows at night to go out

Here too, buying a cat flap is the best solution. Otherwise, you have to make sure that he does not come in and out every 5 minutes and that he understands that if he comes in it is not to come out 5 minutes later.

Cat meowing at night in front of the door

He either wants to come in or go out and a cat flap is also strongly recommended. Especially if it is a cat that comes in and goes out often. The only precaution to take is that it does not bring back mice. Imagine waking up and stepping on a dead rat or mouse! Scares guaranteed!

Deaf cat meowing at night

Your cat is not necessarily aware of its meows. We advise you to go to the veterinarian so that he can give you a complete diagnosis.

Adopted cat meowing at night

If you have just adopted a cat, it is normal for it to meow at night because its mother is no longer there, its environment is different and you must do everything to reassure it as quickly as possible, such as giving it attention. or play with him so that he feels fully at home.

A kitten will naturally have a tendency to meow until it has adapted to its environment.

Senile cat meowing at night

Do what is necessary with your veterinarian so that your cat can behave as well as possible.

Cat that meows and scratches at night

Your cat is clamoring for your attention, and if you don’t want to sleep with him, you can lay down foil or block him out of the door. Cats hate aluminum.

If he’s overdoing it, ignore him and eventually he’ll get into the habit of stopping his meows at night. You can also place repellents in front of the door so that it moves away naturally.

Cat that meows at night like a baby

A cat that meows like a baby does it on purpose, because it knows it will be more effective and will be able to get your attention much more easily. Cats will only understand ignorance as a negative signal, any reaction will be a victory for him and he will continue to meow.

My cat meows at night: The final word

A cat can meow at night for many reasons. As soon as you have identified what makes him meow, take the right decisions to make it stop.