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Sorry it has been so long but I need Cat advise

JaniV123JaniV123 member
Sixth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
edited January 2016 in Chit Chat
I am at my wits end with our cat. He doesn't sleep through the night, he wakes up between 5am and 6 am and we usually wake at 7. Getting him to sleep is a nightmare because he meows incessantly and starts jumping all around the room.

About a month ago he started peeing on things and showing a lot of signs of anxiety in cats, so we have been dealing with that but it seems sometimes he gets annoyed and pees on things when we try to get him to sleep. Throughout the day he goes to the litter box just fine and nothing seems like it is wrong. 

We have been tight on money so we haven't gotten to the vet, but I am taking him Monday. I have been reading every forum and cat/pet website I can find and it has not been much help.

I don't know what to do, I have tried playing with him before bed, soothing music throughout the night, being as gentle and calm as possible, but I can't take it anymore. I am so exhausted because since he started peeing everytime he moves on the bed or awakens, I get up to make sure he isn't peeing on things.

I haven't slept well in weeks and the semester is just getting started and getting complicated and I need to rest. I don't know what else to do, so any advice is very much welcome and appreciated. 

ETA: words


Re: Sorry it has been so long but I need Cat advise

  • I suggest checking out Jackson Galaxy- he has a website with lots of information, videos and tips. He is a cat behaviourist, also has his own show "My Cat From Hell" and has dealt with some pretty crazy cat behaviours. 

    I think it's a good idea you are taking him to the vet to rule out medical causes. Definitely sounds like the cat is stressed- the tricky part is finding out the WHY?

    How old is your cat? 

    Cats do act out when stressed, and in many times due to pain. It is weird that this appears at nighttime only.

    My previous cat, who we had to euthanize in May at the age of 19, used to wake me up around 6am every morning, even when my alarm was set for 6:30 when I'd go to work. I would think- honestly- it's half an hour away, and I always get up at this time!! He would meow, and want me to feed him, even though I would feed him before bed (wet food) and he never finished what I gave him. Even when he woke me up, I always made him wait until 6:30 hoping he'd "learn". He didn't. But what I did notice, was that this behaviour didn't start until he was 17 or 18 years old. Previous to this, he NEVER woke me up. Looking back, I think it had to do with his declining health- why food? not exactly sure, but it was SOMETHING. 

    Have there been ANY changes in your household? His food? His litter? Another new animal? Loss of animal? Moved? Has your or your SOs schedule changed? 

    There's a product called Feli-way that you can get in many forms. It is supposed to mimic cat pheromones to ease anxiety. I have a spray bottle of it that I spray in the cat carrier when my cat is travelling. I'm not convinced it works, but I have also heard you can get a diffuser that you would plug in in your home, and I have heard others say it helps. 


  • @SP29 

    He is about 10 months old, we got him in November because a family member of mine was moving to spain and could not take all her cats so we adopted him. We have a dog who is 5 and is a saint. They get along about 80% of the time. 

    I noticed he gets a lot of anxiety, although in the past 3 weeks it has gotten a little better, when I went out to walk the dog. 

    Over christmas vacation, we spent about a month in my mom's house because all of the festivities were in that town and it was safer/easier to be there. 

    Household changes have not been drastic and his behavior started before they were made. Food and little are the same, but lately he seems to not be liking his food as much. Schedules have been the same, and that weirdly doesn't seem to be a problem

    Something that helped a little (at one point he was peeing in the morning after I walked the dog) was leaving them out and about together during the day. But the nighttime routing has not changed at all. 

    I cried last night with how frustrated I am. I adore him and he is very calm, good, and loving most of the time. But I need my sleep.


  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Kidney issues?
    ________________________________


    huskypuppy14
  • @thisismynickname 

    I read about that but he has been drinking water normally and he has been peeing normally as well (amounts) so I think it would be unlikely but still we are taking him to the vet on Monday


  • Is he neutered?
    Also, might there a female unspayed cat around (neighbours, friends) that he might be smelling?

    We had the same issue with out male, neutered cat and once we got our female spayed, problem went away.

    I hope your kitty is healthy!
  • CMGragainCMGragain member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    edited January 2016
    My cat checks on us several times during the night.  He jumps up on the bed, makes a "mother cat" sound (He is a neutered male) and rubs against us until one of us pets him for a minute.  Then he goes to the foot of the bed, plops himself on my feet, and goes to sleep.
     DH is a sound sleeper and seldom wakes up, so it is up to me to do the midnight comforting this cat seems to need. I think he has anxiety from being abandoned in his former life.  We got him from the shelter.
    He has me trained.  When we travel, I can't sleep without him.  I keep expecting him to wake me up and demand a petting session.
    Let me know if you find a solution to this.  Hope kitty checks out OK at the vet.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • CMGragain said:
    My cat checks on us several times during the night.  He jumps up on the bed, makes a "mother cat" sound (He is a neutered male) and rubs against us until one of us pets him for a minute.  Then he goes to the foot of the bed, plops himself on my feet, and goes to sleep.
     DH is a sound sleeper and seldom wakes up, so it is up to me to do the midnight comforting this cat seems to need. I think he has anxiety from being abandoned in his former life.  We got him from the shelter.
    He has me trained.  When we travel, I can't sleep without him.  I keep expecting him to wake me up and demand a petting session.
    Let me know if you find a solution to this.  Hope kitty checks out OK at the vet.
    he does/did this too but now it has become a problem. 

    Is he neutered?
    Also, might there a female unspayed cat around (neighbours, friends) that he might be smelling?

    We had the same issue with out male, neutered cat and once we got our female spayed, problem went away.

    I hope your kitty is healthy!
    There are several stray cats around here because some neighbor feeds them. He gets very territorial at times when we take him outside with the leash or when the other cats come to our doorstep because they smell him. He gets a ton of anxiety with that but it hasn't happened in the last week 


  • Is there a particular area where he soils?

    There was an episode of My Cat From Hell where they had an un-spayed female who was spray on the walls and living room furniture... which happened to be near the front door. Jackson used a black light and found several spots of urine stain on the front of the door and the front steps- un-neutered males could smell the female and were spraying around the front of the house. 

    The biggest solution was to fix their cat. And this obviously isn't the problem you are having BUT if there are stray cats spraying around your home, it's possible your cat is spraying back to claim his territory. 
  • We ended up making our indoor cat, with similar lovely issues, an outdoor/indoor cat.  This really seemed to help out.  I was, and continue, to be a bit nervous about the dangers of the outdoors but he really does seem happy.

  • @SP29 most of the time it has been in our room (bed, night table, his towel on our bed, the dogs bed) and the other times I found pee was in a futon that was in our other room which he stayed at before I began leaving him out and about. 


  • assuming everything checks out with the vet I would guess the cat does not like sleeping on your schedule. When we first got the cats we have now we got some nighttime toys for them and put them in the living room. This kept them occupied while we got to sleep in a little later. The one my kitten loved was "Petstages nighttime flashing firefly mat"


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  • assuming everything checks out with the vet I would guess the cat does not like sleeping on your schedule. When we first got the cats we have now we got some nighttime toys for them and put them in the living room. This kept them occupied while we got to sleep in a little later. The one my kitten loved was "Petstages nighttime flashing firefly mat"


    That is what I am thinking but we have started leaving the door open and letting him go out if he pleases but he comes into the room and stars meowing incessantly. I put out his toys and such but he plays for a few minutes and comes to meow in our room. :s 

    He slept just fine at first (minus the waking up at 5-6 am) 


  • Is he neutered? He could be starting to mark.

    I would take him to the vet - it could be a UTI - less common in male cats but it could still happen. Or he could be in the early stages of blocking - but I would guess probably not considering the symptoms have been going on for a long time. And when a cat blocks it tends to happen quickly - as in within hours.

    Otherwise I would look into behaviors. Does he have enough toys to play with? Does he have places to jump up high and survey his surroundings? 

    We had issues with our cats waking us up too. We fixed this by adjusting their eating schedule so that they get a small amount of dry food when we go to bed so they can snack throughout the night. This way they are hungry and ready to eat breakfast in the morning - but not quite hungry enough to wake us up before our alarms go off.
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  • emmaaaemmaaa North Carolina mod
    Moderator 2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary
    Our cat is 2 years old and still does not sleep on a "normal schedule." We sleep with the bedroom door opened and she only comes in our room maybe once a week to sleep. usually she is out in the house playing with toys and running around. I'm a really light sleeper so I always hear it. We don't have the soiling issues though,

    I hope you get some answers or at least eliminate some health issues at the vet today!

  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    JaniV123 said:
    I am at my wits end with our cat. He doesn't sleep through the night, he wakes up between 5am and 6 am and we usually wake at 7. Getting him to sleep is a nightmare because he meows incessantly and starts jumping all around the room.

    About a month ago he started peeing on things and showing a lot of signs of anxiety in cats, so we have been dealing with that but it seems sometimes he gets annoyed and pees on things when we try to get him to sleep. Throughout the day he goes to the litter box just fine and nothing seems like it is wrong. 

    We have been tight on money so we haven't gotten to the vet, but I am taking him Monday. I have been reading every forum and cat/pet website I can find and it has not been much help.

    I don't know what to do, I have tried playing with him before bed, soothing music throughout the night, being as gentle and calm as possible, but I can't take it anymore. I am so exhausted because since he started peeing everytime he moves on the bed or awakens, I get up to make sure he isn't peeing on things.

    I haven't slept well in weeks and the semester is just getting started and getting complicated and I need to rest. I don't know what else to do, so any advice is very much welcome and appreciated. 

    ETA: words
    We're talking about a cat here, not an infant.  He's not going to go to sleep exactly when you do, nor wake up exactly on your schedule.

    What you are describing is pretty normal for cats.  Our cats get up around that time every morning, and they are 3 and 9.  Pretty much every cat I have ever owned has done this, especially in the spring when the birds become active at 5am.  So we get up, feed them, then go back to bed for a bit.

    And most cats are going to be more active at night- they are nocturnal predators by nature.  They are going to want to be up at night and screw around a bit, and then they typically settle down and go to sleep.  I'd imagine as your cat gets older he will start to settle down a bit more and settle into a routine that is similar to yours, but it's never going to be 100% the same.

    As for he peeing outside of the box issues- 1st rule out health issues as PPs have suggested, then rule out a dislike for the litter.  Cats are very picky about the type of litter you use, and also how clean the litter box is.

    And if he's just peeing outside the box at night because you are trying to make him go to sleep, then stop that and see what happens.








    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    huskypuppy14kittykyatJaniV123kkitkat79
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    JaniV123 said:
    CMGragain said:
    My cat checks on us several times during the night.  He jumps up on the bed, makes a "mother cat" sound (He is a neutered male) and rubs against us until one of us pets him for a minute.  Then he goes to the foot of the bed, plops himself on my feet, and goes to sleep.
     DH is a sound sleeper and seldom wakes up, so it is up to me to do the midnight comforting this cat seems to need. I think he has anxiety from being abandoned in his former life.  We got him from the shelter.
    He has me trained.  When we travel, I can't sleep without him.  I keep expecting him to wake me up and demand a petting session.
    Let me know if you find a solution to this.  Hope kitty checks out OK at the vet.
    he does/did this too but now it has become a problem. 

    Is he neutered?
    Also, might there a female unspayed cat around (neighbours, friends) that he might be smelling?

    We had the same issue with out male, neutered cat and once we got our female spayed, problem went away.

    I hope your kitty is healthy!
    There are several stray cats around here because some neighbor feeds them. He gets very territorial at times when we take him outside with the leash or when the other cats come to our doorstep because they smell him. He gets a ton of anxiety with that but it hasn't happened in the last week 
    If going outside causes your cat anxiety, then stop doing it.  Doesn't matter what the reason- other cats, fear of the outdoors, etc.  Stop putting your cat in a situation that makes him anxious.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    SP29LabLove86
  • How did the vet appointment go? 
    CMGragainemmaaaPrettyGirlLost
  • @SP29 so far no health issues and we made an appointment to have him neutered. We watched a TON of Jackson Galaxy videos and have tried to start getting him on a feeding schedule he recommended to get them to sleep through the night. Still waking up at 5-6 am but the peeing has reduced. I am trying to keep H constantly cleaning the litter box because that seems to make it a little better and we removed the hood from the litter box.

    JaniV123 said:
    I am at my wits end with our cat. He doesn't sleep through the night, he wakes up between 5am and 6 am and we usually wake at 7. Getting him to sleep is a nightmare because he meows incessantly and starts jumping all around the room.

    About a month ago he started peeing on things and showing a lot of signs of anxiety in cats, so we have been dealing with that but it seems sometimes he gets annoyed and pees on things when we try to get him to sleep. Throughout the day he goes to the litter box just fine and nothing seems like it is wrong. 

    We have been tight on money so we haven't gotten to the vet, but I am taking him Monday. I have been reading every forum and cat/pet website I can find and it has not been much help.

    I don't know what to do, I have tried playing with him before bed, soothing music throughout the night, being as gentle and calm as possible, but I can't take it anymore. I am so exhausted because since he started peeing everytime he moves on the bed or awakens, I get up to make sure he isn't peeing on things.

    I haven't slept well in weeks and the semester is just getting started and getting complicated and I need to rest. I don't know what else to do, so any advice is very much welcome and appreciated. 

    ETA: words
    We're talking about a cat here, not an infant.  He's not going to go to sleep exactly when you do, nor wake up exactly on your schedule.

    What you are describing is pretty normal for cats.  Our cats get up around that time every morning, and they are 3 and 9.  Pretty much every cat I have ever owned has done this, especially in the spring when the birds become active at 5am.  So we get up, feed them, then go back to bed for a bit.

    And most cats are going to be more active at night- they are nocturnal predators by nature.  They are going to want to be up at night and screw around a bit, and then they typically settle down and go to sleep.  I'd imagine as your cat gets older he will start to settle down a bit more and settle into a routine that is similar to yours, but it's never going to be 100% the same.

    As for he peeing outside of the box issues- 1st rule out health issues as PPs have suggested, then rule out a dislike for the litter.  Cats are very picky about the type of litter you use, and also how clean the litter box is.

    And if he's just peeing outside the box at night because you are trying to make him go to sleep, then stop that and see what happens.







    1st bolded: getting up to feed him doesnt work. I can get up and feed him but he will come right back in the room and meow and jumping everywhere. What works but it is highly highly inconvenient is to wake up and feed him and lay on the sofa until 7am. He eats and lays right back down next to me. 

    2nd bolded: He didn't have an issue with the litter when we got it so I doubt that. Cleaning the litter box is H's chore and he sometimes falls asleep before doing it so I have taken the lead and if he is asleep, I clean it. 

    Also what has helped is making sure he pees right before going to bed.

    As for the other post @PrettyGirlLost when we figured out it was stressing him out we stopped taking him out on the leash even though he still want to go outside. Like when I am taking out the doggy he sits near the door looking like a lost puppy and gets excited to have the leash on. Once outside he gets nervous, so we haven't taken him out in a long while.


    SP29
  • @JaniV123 

    Glad to hear things are going a bit better. Jackson has a lot of good information! I've learned a lot of things I never knew about cats watching his show/ reading his articles. 

    Now that you mention neutering- I think this will fix most of your problems! I think it is good though you are working on the feeding schedule and trying to fix some other behaviours, just to make sure it doesn't continue as a behaviour once he's neutered. 
    CMGragainJaniV123
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