How To Stop A Cat From Meowing Excessively
Cats are very vocal animals and they have the ability to express their feelings through meows, purrs, growls, hisses, yowls, etc. These sounds can also be pretty loud sometimes! Seasoned cat owners are used to these noises, while new cat owners often worry that something is wrong. If you know WHY they’re doing it, then you’ll know how to stop a cat from meowing excessively!
But sometimes cats will start meowing excessively for no apparent reason. Well, no apparent reason to us humans. Cats always have a reason for what they do.
So just what could their reason being for meowing excessively? Furthermore, how can you stop your cat from meowing excessively?
Cats meow to communicate with their humans, while kittens will meow to communicate with both their mothers and their humans.
Yes, fully grown cats only meow to communicate with humans. Out in the wild, an adult cat will never meow to communicate with other cats or animals. Sure, they might hiss, growl, or even yowl, but they simply don’t meow to communicate.
Cats have evolved to understand that they can make different noises at us to communicate what they want. It’s your job as a cat owner to decipher just what your cats need.
Most of the time a cat’s meow will be something simple. Maybe your cat is hungry, or maybe they want to play. But in rare instances a cat’s meow means there is something medically wrong.
If you feel something is wrong with your cat then you should close this website down and call your vet immediately. Otherwise, read on to learn about your kitty and why they meow excessively sometimes!
When Your Cat Meows Excessively It Means They Want Something
As we mentioned above, cats meow whenever they want something. If you’re experiencing excessive meowing with your cat(s) then it means they must REALLY want something.
Excessive meowing can also mean there may be some medical issues that need to be addressed, although it’s likely that your cat just wants something. Exceptions to this are cats with underlying medical conditions.
Let’s see if we can’t figure out why your cat is showing some excessive vocalizations and meowing!
Your Cat Is Hungry
Being hungry is probably the most common reason for your cat to be meowing excessively. When your cat is hungry they’ll usually let you know by being vocal, rubbing against your legs, looking up at you, or even licking your face. (Cats also lick your face because they like the way you taste!)
Kittens are notorious for meowing excessively whenever they’re hungry. The closer you get to meal time, the louder their meows will get.
You can usually tell that your cat is meowing because they’re hungry by walking by their food bowl. If it’s close to feeding time and your cat meows louder and louder as you walk by their food bowl, then their excessive meowing is likely due to hunger.
Be sure to feed your cat at least twice per day. Your cat’s metabolism is not suited to only eat one meal a day. With many cats even twice per day isn’t enough. In the wild, cats will eat multiple times throughout the day.
If your cat is still meowing excessively at their food and you’re not around to feed them multiple times throughout the day, then an automatic feeder is something you should look into!
Your Cat Wants Attention
Another thing that causes your cat to meow excessively is when they want attention from you. You might think cats are very independent creatures, and they are in some ways. But cats are actually pretty social.
Sure, your cat might not stay with you every time you pick them up and put them in your lap. But there are other times where they just need companionship from their humans.
Kittens will often meow incessantly when they want attention from their parents. Once they reach adulthood, should they still be in the same household as their parents or littermates, they will only meow for attention from their humans.
Your Cat Is Lonely
Loneliness is another reason why your cat could be meowing excessively. Cats have been known to howl and cry when they’re lonely. This is a little bit different than the point above about cats wanting attention. Sometimes your cat wants your company but they don’t necessarily want attention from you. They just want you to be close by.
This is especially true of older cats. Younger cats have no problems sprinting from room to room looking for you so that they can just be in the same room as you. Other cats may feel the need to loudly meow from other parts of your home, hoping that you’ll come keep them company.
If you live in a multi-cat household then it’s possible you may hear some yowling or chirping as one cat walks around the house looking for the other.
Depending on your cat’s age and how often you’re home, you may want to look into having a pet sitter stop by during the day while you’re at work. Having someone pop in for even just 20-30 minutes can make a big difference to a lonely kitty.
Your Cat Has Medical Issues
Sometimes your cat has medical issues that cause them to be more vocal than usual. For example, if your cat has arthritis then they may be using their voice to communicate pain. Or maybe your cat has kidney disease and they’re experiencing discomfort while urinating. An overactive thyroid can make your cat feel just off and not right, and they may be trying to tell you that they need help.
These types of health issues can make your cat meow more frequently than normal.
If you’re certain that your cat isn’t meowing because of anything else on this list, then it’s time to call the vet. Even if you’re just slightly unsure, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Cats often have underlying medical conditions that don’t directly present themselves in a way that humans will notice.
Constant meowing shouldn’t be seen as annoying or cute. You need to try to figure out what your cat wants as they may be trying to ask for help.
Your Cat Is Stressed
Cats are notorious for being stressed. If you’ve ever had a dog, then you know that dogs are much easier to train than cats. Dogs are generally friendly and obedient (depending on the breed!) Cats aren’t like that one bit. They’re pretty anxious animals who tend to get stressed easily.
When your cat is stressed, they may start meowing excessively. It’s important to understand that your cat is going through something stressful. And to understand this, you need to figure out what it is that’s stressing them out.
Did you recently move to a new place? If so, you cat may be having trouble adjusting. If you’ve recently moved or are planning on moving, our guide to moving with a cat can provide some insight on how to avoid excessive meowing and anxiety.
Have you added someone new to your family? A new pet, baby, boyfriend, girlfriend, etc.. can actually stress your cat out. Have you moved furniture around? Even those kinds of changes can stress a cat out.
Cats are creatures of habit. They crave routine and a set schedule. Whenever you make changes to their lives, even if these changes are indirect, then you could be stressing your cat out. Identify these areas of stress and help them ease into the new changes.
Your Cat Is In Heat
Female cats go into heat multiple times throughout the year. This means that their bodies are telling them that it’s time to mate. During this time, they may be very vocal.
Your cat may also be scratching at doors and windows. This is because they’re picking up the scent of a male cat that’s outside.
You should always have your pets spayed and/or neutered. This will prevent your cat from meowing excessively while she’s in heat.
Is Your Cat Meowing Excessively At Night?
One final thing we want to touch base on is about cats who meow excessively at night. Before we dive in to our final point, it’s worth noting that many people falsely believe that cats are nocturnal so they meow at night just because it’s when they’re most active.
This isn’t true because cats are actually crepuscular! Crepuscular animals are most active during dusk and dawn AKA the “low-light” hours. This is also a reason why your cat is so affectionate in the mornings!
Anyways, back to our final point about cats meowing at night. 9 times out of 10 if your cat is meowing at night then it’s going to be related to one of our points above.
Just because they’re crepuscular doesn’t mean that they won’t be awake at night. Your cat might be hungry but you’re asleep and can’t feed them. Or maybe your cat is lonely but you’re asleep and can’t keep them company.
The best way to fix this is by:
1. Having a very intense play session close to bed time. This will help to tire them out.
2. Feed your cat a decent meal right before bed time to ensure that they don’t try and wake you up at 4am for a very early breakfast. Automatic feeders are great to solve this issue as well.
3. Ignore your cat until they stop meowing. This will be the hardest part but the reason your cat meows is because they’ve learned it will wake you up and garner attention for them. You have to show them that meowing at you will not make you get out of bed.
Is Your Cat Meowing To Go Outside?
Another big issue with cats being excessively vocal at night is for cats who are NOT indoor-only cats. If your cat is an indoor/outdoor cat, then they may be meowing more than usual because they want to get outside but nobody is awake to let them out.
Now, I’m going to apologize in advance for lecturing you, but you should never let your cat outside! Depending on their breed and health, indoor cats can live 15-17+ years. This next fact might shock you, but outdoor cats typically live 2-5 years.
The longer your cat is outdoors the more exposure it gets to dangers and hazards. How would you feel if you were leaving for work in the morning and saw that your cat was hit by a car?
“I live in the country, there’s no traffic!” Great, now you get to look out for predators. Look at all of the animals that will eat cats in the food chain. “There are no predators where I live!” Something as simple as a feral or stray cat that’s FIV+ positive can get into a scuffle with your cat and then give them the cat equivalent of HIV. Do you want your cat to have the equivalent to HIV? No. Then leave them inside!