Train Your Cat to Let You Sleep

Jackson, I haven’t
slept in three days. My cat keeps me
up all night long. I’m gonna kill her. No, I’m not gonna kill her,
but Jackson, you gotta tell me. I’m gonna kill myself here. Tell me, how do I sleep
through the night? And I say, oh, that one? That’s easy. So let me ask you
something, people. You ready to get cat-ified? Let’s go! As you have noticed
I’m sure, this is not exactly the cat cave. It is a cave. It’s a little echoey in here. But no, I am in a hotel room
in San Diego, California, where we are wrapping
up filming the season of “My Cat from
Hell” season five, premiering– coming
up in the spring. Do stay tuned because
you’ll find out everything you have to know
about the premier of “My Cat from Hell” here, on
the Cat Daddy channel. Just, you know, stay tuned. So today we’re
talking about what? Your cat allowing you to
sleep through the night. Now, the last
episode I was talking about the concept of
circadian rhythms, a cat’s 24 hour clock,
and how naturally it wants to get them
up at dusk and dawn. We can help guide
their circadian rhythm. We can reset their body clocks. But there’s a couple of
really important things. Now when last we met I
also gave you homework, and that homework
was about making sure that you established a daily
rhythm, that you establish rituals that happen
throughout the day that helps keep their body going. And the one thing that is
most important to what we’re going to do right now is
they’re feeding schedule. Remember something,
if you allow your cats to graze all day
long, if you allow them to eat whenever
they want to eat, then not only do you not
have a chance of affecting their behavior
even a little bit, but you’re not
allowing their body to process food in
the natural way. They’re constantly in
this arc of digestion. And we don’t want that
because then their energy is totally unpredictable to us. Here’s what I would
ask you to do. If you free feed, make it stop. The next step is, you
bring in meal time. Real big change in a cat’s life
is not met with nice things. And you do not want to
encourage bad behavior, and by making rapid changes
like that, you kind of are. We’ll keep the dry food
out, but then every day you just put less and less in there. And by the end of that first
week that, there is food down there, they don’t feel
like they’re missing anything. But by an hour after
you leave for work, they’ve polished it off and
now they’re waiting for a meal. Now here’s the rule of thumb. I would like to see no
longer than between six and eight hours you
can make it happen. So you’re feeding
three meals a day and then your cat’s
energy is coming up to meet those meal times. And I guarantee you,
within a week or two of instituting this meal
time, your cat’s energy will come up to
meet your schedules. Your second step
is to try to get them to go to sleep when you do. Let’s say your bed
time is 11 o’clock. OK. So by 9:30 you should be
feeding your last meal. But you don’t want to
do that in a vacuum. In the past– you know me– we
have been talking about hunt, catch, kill, eat. Right? And so that means playtime. That means you have a
really nice, chunky play time right before
that last meal. You bring them to a
boil during play time. You get them just pooped out. Then you let them come
down for a second. Again, all cats have the
second wind, the third wind. Cats are built for
speed, not for distance. So bring them to a boil,
let them come down. Bring them to a
boil, now it’s going to take less time for
them to get worn out. Now less time, now
they’re tired, right? When they pooped out, boom. Now, hunt, catch, kill, eat. Feed their last meal of the day. What comes after eat? Groom. Yeah, baby. We’re all about getting
clean right now. And then sleep. And then you go to sleep. Now we’re getting
to the hard part. Because now you’ve got
to do some serious work. So now it’s 3 o’clock
in the morning, and your cat is waking you up. But you know, I gave you
a meal at 11 o’clock. I wore you down at 9:30. You should be down for the
count right now, but you’re not. Now here’s the tough part. I mean, I’m laughing
only because I know how ridiculously
hard this is. What you’ve got to do at
3 o’clock in the morning, your cat’s driving you crazy. You ignore them. You ignore them completely. Completely. And you definitely don’t get
up, feed them, walk around, go to the bathroom,
come back again. You don’t play with them. Nothing. You ignore them completely. Because that is payoff. Negative attention, positive
attention, any attention whatsoever is still attention. You have to
extinguish the payoff. If you tell them
night after night after night that nothing’s
going to happen when they do that certain behavior,
that behavior will stop. So people, what that means
is that for about 10 days to two weeks, it may be
really, really long nights. Don’t kill me. Now, if it goes past 13 nights? Whatever, come find me. Because I’m telling
you, it won’t happen. In conclusion, let’s
give you some homework. Take a look at that blackboard. Now, write it down here. First thing you do
is change your cat from free-feeders
to meal-feeders. Big change. Next thing you do is you feed
in conjunction with play. Third thing, remember
that your cat’s energy moves with your energy. So remember that you’re trying
to merge the two together. Your energy, your cat’s energy,
your clock, your cat’s clock, merge them together. Then don’t forget, the last
meal of the day an hour and a half before you go to bed. You’re going to hunt, catch,
kill, eat, let them groom and sleep until you go to bed. Boom. Then we get through the night. And then the last step, folks–
the last, most important step is, ignore them. You guys can do this. You can affect your
cat’s body clock, and that’s how you do it. That’s how you sleep
through the night. Boom. Consider yourself cat-ified. Alright. Let’s wrap this up. Hey folks, if you’re trying
to find me, I’m easily found. Take a look at Facebook
and Instagram and Twitter and YouTube and Google+. And don’t forget,
speaking of Google+, every month we do Live
from the Cat Cave. And that is a live
Google Hangout. This month I’m just going to be
doing live question and answer. That will be a lot of fun. In the meantime, folks,
take care of yourself. Take care of your cats. And all light, all
love, all mojo to you. THEME SONG: You’re a bad cat. I’m not a bad cat. You’re a bad cat. I’m not a bad cat. You’re a bad cat. I’m just misunderstood. Meow.

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100 thoughts on “Train Your Cat to Let You Sleep

  1. I was just watching a different (vet) expert and he said the exact opposite (free feed and allow trickle feedi g whenever possible.)

  2. I think cats are nocturnal. Daylight is too bright for their eyes. That said, I think getting a cat outside to sleep in the sunlight and fresh air helps them. Also, they need some safe raw meat once in a while.

    Too bad we can't give them a job to do at night, like, say, chasing mice? Cats are perfectly designed to hunt rodents. It's their talent. They can guard our crops and grain storage.
    I guess you could store some grain in your garage, and crack the door a tiny bit, and your cat can catch the neighborhood mice at night.

  3. Watching this at 3 am as 9 week old kitten keeps swatting and clawing me in my sleep, doesn’t like to not be with me or she’ll cry so it’s like I have no choice to let her in my room, when sleeping together doesn’t seem to work out and I don’t want to squish her.

  4. How to take care of a street cat? This cat comes with me in d evening stays till d night plays eats n then i have to take her out n she sleeps in a box kept by me outside the house as my parents dont allow her to sleep inside the house… I feed her cat with her she lets me give her a bath… But she's a street cat n keeps getting dirty again n again… but how do i control her diet as i have no idea whether she's hungry or not.. Everytime she comes home i feed her with dry cat food n fresh water …pls suggest she is 5 months old

  5. I tried this method and after a few days of trial and error, my cat finally stops waking me up at night! He would even (sometimes) cuddle with me in the morning when I wake up!! It’s been 3 weeks since and I’m so happy it worked! Thank you Jackson! 😀

  6. how to manipulate your cat in a way that's beneficial to both parties, this is what it is to have a cat

  7. Lock my two in front living room after last meal 9-10pm then breakfast is 11am-12noon and that’s after I kick them both out in garden at 6am wen they return they eat breakfast an sleep 💕🌸

  8. They wake you up at night because you’re not there during the day. It’s nice to talk about an eating schedule, but until that cat doesn’t feel like he’s going to be missing you for large portions of time, they will be insecure. Yeah, ignore the cat and don’t have any chow available for him. Great. I’m disabled and with the cat most of the time. He’s pretty well mannered, he can see that I struggle sometimes, and if I ask him to do something, he knows it’s for a good reason. He wakes up at dawn, checks on me, I talk to him, I go back to sleep for a couple hours and so does he, because he’s NOT STARVING.

  9. my cat likes to try and stick her nose in my ear, nose, and mouth. she also likes to attack my eye, and continuously claw at me if i don’t give her attention. not only that, but she likes to walk all over me, and meows all the time. i’ll give updates to see if this works.

  10. I use an alarm on my phone with a sound that I only use for my cat's feeding times. He knows he won't get breakfast until that alarm goes off at 8am. Every time I try to stop using that particular alarm, he starts waking me up earlier and earlier until it is the crack of dawn (currently 5:15 am). Then I have to go back to using the alarm and after a couple of days, he lets me sleep until my own personal alarm goes off.

    My previous cat was able to tell time and didn't need an alarm.

  11. My cat used to bug me at night. For the longest time she'd wake me up in the middle of the night by sticking her cold wet nose in my ear or purposely tickling my face with her whiskers or, my favourite licking the same patch of skin over and over and over again until the pain awoke me. For awhile I'd push her off my bed roughly, you know just hard enough to hurt her dignity. Then she learned to roll with the shove making that method ineffective. Every night for years she did this. But every now again Id wake up in the middle of the night and realize I was petting her in my sleep. She had me trained dammit…

  12. Will this work with a 20-year-old Ragamese cat with Hyper-Thyroid disease and kidney disease? I really hope so. She's constantly hungry!

  13. I'm guessing this worked cause your cat doesn't realize that destroying stuff is the best motivator for you yet lol My cat used to tear up the door and wallpaper if my mom didn't get up to let him out at 4:30.

  14. My cat wakes me up at 6 am every night when she sleeps with me. She wakes me up with her love, but if I ignore her, she goes back to sleep hehehehe

  15. Me and my cat sleep together ! I usually get up before him !
    PS I'll sleep so deeply that even a bomb won't wake me up!

  16. I'm really lucky. My Cat goes to bed at same time as me or before me if I'm up late. Then gets up when I get up, unless I'm having a really long lie in. 🐱 💖

  17. My cats are outside cats (reformed ferals) and they sleep ALL DAY in the backyard and run around the front yard at night. If they were inside cats, I don’t think they would appreciate a schedule change! But they are meal feeders, and ready appreciate that!


  19. I'll never for the life of me understand why it's so difficult for humans to discipline themselves let alone get another life whom they cannot be disciplined for.

  20. IT'S 1AM

  21. I'm a kitten parent and this lil guy loves to play bite fingers, ankles. I've brought him toys, but he prefers fingers and ankles. How can I break him out of this habit?

  22. this feeding routine sounds fine, but how are you supposed to keep up this feeding schedule when you are working a 3-shift- job (me being a nurse) I am living with my 2nd generation of cats, each of which has a different appetite and very individual eating habits. I have been free feeding for years now, out of shere necessity and none of them is obese, nor malnourished. and I never get any loud meowing, complaining for or fighting about food either, btw. and they do let me sleep although my sleeping pattern is irregular by design. if they roam they do it quietly while most of the time they prefer to join me having a long nap themselves right next to me. so there is no one-scheme-fits-all, right?

  23. Im deaf my cat cant bother me while in sleeping unless she climbs on me which she. Does the i lock her out of my be room

  24. My cat would only stop the meowing when I’d let him sleep with me otherwise he would be so loud no one would be able to sleep in the house.

  25. Hello Mr Galaxy, I don't know if you still read these comments but I wanted to say this absolutely works. I tried with a kitten and the first 2 nights were brutal meowing, but after the 3rd night he meowed for about 5 minutes and stopped. I also put a warm bottle in his bed as well.

    If anybody else is reading this give it a try. The mistake that was being made in my case was feeding him 3-4 times a day without exercise first. Once put on my eating schedule it definitely made a difference.

  26. What if I have neighbors-in an apartment? I’m worried about annoying/waking them too b/c she meows/“cries” as I call it

  27. Watching this at 6am while my three cats have been bouncing off the walls since 345am 😭😭 I will literally try anything at this point cause we're going on months with very very little sleep 😭

  28. thank u ! my moms is very busy and has work and the cat just meows and meows n my mom wanted to give it back to shelter but i don’t want to :;;(( i also can’t sleep 🙁 but i love her i am trying to train her

  29. So is giving dry food considered a meal or is something else given for that meal? Can it be half wet and dry? If dry food is considered a meal then how much would I give my cat three times a day?

  30. My cat annoys the heck out of me at night. I would put her out of my bedroom but I'm not suppose to bc she gets in trouble in the rest of my house.

  31. I sent this to my wife, so she can get the idea to listen and not feed the CAT when Cujo is bugging her. Cujo will then wake my wife up. My wife wakes up feeds Cujo. Then she will go lay on the couch. Cujo will proceed to go back and sleep with me in our bed. Do you have a suggestion?

  32. My kitten likes to wake me up at random hours of the night to attack my face with kisses 🤦🏽‍♀️ It’s cute and all, just not the right time lol

  33. Meal feeding causes an increased desire to binge eat which can cause some cats to regurgitate and feel really unwell. I've never had issues training my cats out of these behaviors, despite always free-feeding, and no my cats are not obese because I feed them quality food. I free feed dry and give wet food twice a day. My cats don't finish all their wet food at once either because they know if it's gone when they come back then can have some dry and they don't overeat.

    You can still promote a daily routine easily using wet food at specified meal times. Wet food in general is much healthier than dry as ~30% of cats end up experiencing kidney problems due to a low thirst drive and dry food. Cats take in roughly 50% of their daily water needs when on a dry food diet as they are accustomed to getting their water from their food. (As long as you limit their fish intake due to heavy metal toxicity, wet is better) Having additional dry food helps scrape some plaque off teeth as well as prevent binge-eating.

    Most of the information provided is good, simply don't let your cat dictate your schedule, let it learn to accept yours.

  34. Ummm, Jackson? It happened. Past 13 days now. Ambien doesn't even help. (for me, not the cats). Help!

  35. How do you ignore your cat when your cat gets on top of you every time you change positions in bed? This is when I take him to a hotel. When I’m at home I usually keep my door closed while he gets the rest of the house and yes, I usually ignore him and he stops meowing.

  36. The cats that live with my parents are allowed to graze and fat as hell. One acts out and the other sleeps all day. The cats that live with me and my bf are fed twice a day, fit, and behave better towards others.

    I try to convince my mom not to feed the cats like she does but she has an erratic work schedule so she cant afford to be woken up by them. Not even the vets can get through to her and I dont know what to do anymore because I don't want the cats from my childhood to suffer and die earlier because of obesity. I cant take initiative and do it myself because I live in another state so any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  37. I’ve been smacking the shit out of my cat in the middle of the night. Little fucker scratches and bites the shit out of me and thinks I’m playing with him. Maybe that’s probably why he’s been acting weird lately

  38. Aw man, it'll be tough to ignore my cat when she wakes me up at 3 a.m., cuz she usually just wants love and snuggles haha!

  39. How do I completely ignore my cat if he bites me to wake me up? My kitten bites my face if he wants me to get up.

  40. Mine was scratching on open doors in the middle of the night. I now ignore it, even though it’s hard to. After a couple of minutes with no attention, she will come and sleep on the bed. 🙂

  41. my kitten goes in her crate. .shes happy and loves it.. I love my kitten shes amazing and so affectionant. no trouble at all. tuxedo cats are amazin.g.. rescued from foster care at humane society at 8 weeks. named her Dulcinea "sweetness" in spanish.. Other tuxedo I have dont like you petting her back end and hisses at me but so far never actually scratched or bit me.. shes affectionant but only on her terms..

  42. I had a cat that would try to wake me up early in the morning, after my mom fed it. He wasn't hungry, and he was only doing it to me. And no, I did not encourage him by giving him attention. Solve that, Mr. Galaxy!

  43. I've a 7wk old wild kitten I found bout wk half ago can u give me tips on how best to raise him please my first time having a kitten and I just want to get it right as much as possible

  44. I just watched a video by a licensed vet who says that cats allowed to graze are a small amount healthier then cats with meal times. If I can find the link I'll share it.

  45. Sometimes I think my cat is horrible, then I watch videos like this and realise… she is the best cat in the world.😭😭 I love her so much, she has never woken me up at 3AM and I'm beyond grateful 😭😭🤧

  46. Talk about perfect timing. I did the ignoring technique and it worked IMMEDIATELY (at least for right now). The bed risers I use for my bed frame create space between the backboard and wall, and of course my kittens learned that they can climb up the back upholstery and hang out (noisily) on the top of the board, right above my head. The first climb, I took them down. Second time occurred right as I was watching this video so I ignored them instead (so funny cuz I saw their little heads peering down at me in my peripheral). And what did they do? Got down themselves and walked away. Now they’re chilling quietly on the floor LOL. thank you!!

  47. Can't relate lol. My cat takes himself off to bed at 6.00 pm, sleeps till about 8.30, gets up, has a snack and a litter break, then goes back to sleep either with my daughter in her room or in his own bed in the lounge room. He gets up for breakfast when the alarm goes off in the morning. No drama, no problem.

  48. We have 3 cats, they are good boys, they have their water fountain, two feeders all they long available to them and only dinner at around 9pm of wet food in they individual color coded plates, and they wont eat from their brothers plate😺 then grooming time and after and they start meowing if I dont go to bed by our regular bedtime… we humans are the ones keeping them up hahaha.

  49. At 3 am in the morning, my 4.5-month-old kitten Spazz is using his 'night-vision' to chase and hunt kitty-ghosts'!!!

  50. Or just simply get a cat with a quiet personality
    Cats has personality
    Some are needy some need alone time
    Know what u want first

  51. Although my boy wakes me up every night to give him his soft food breakfast he's such a good boy that he doesn't bother me at all. Actually he does but I'm used to it and not phased by it at all. He plays on my bed while I'm sleeping, jumping up and down on me. Cost me a couple of relationships but men come and go, my baby is forever.

  52. We do free feed, so I get my sleep by making sure that the dish is filled for the night. They do get some heavy play time and petting and love before bed. They also like to sleep with us, but know momma don't do nothing at stupid am unless the hairball hack is heard. They are smart animals.

  53. Any tips for a cat with hyperthyroidism? She screams every three to four hours for food, she's deaf so she's loud BUT she's also on the correct medication – I don't know if she associates 'slightly hungry' with 'STARVING' but she's put on weight (she's at her target weight, when we first got her she was so thin her eyes had sunken into her head) so she's not hungryhungry – she can't be! She also yowls when she can't get her own way – impossible to sleep through. Day and night the Bone Panther screams.

  54. thank you so much. my question is, I give them 3 meals a day. but how much I am supposed to give them? Sassy is 2 yrs now she is like 9 pounds, and her daughter is 5 months, and like 2 pounds, but sassy is the one that is always hungry. help!!!!

  55. I've never really had that issue I guess. Hiroki, since he was a wee baby would know oh gawd dad's in bed it's cuddle time, we'd cuddle, he'd get his pets and love and then he'd sleep.. He passed away last Feb, but his little sister is similar. She'll come get her cuddles and loves and then pass right on out lol

  56. My cats have never been free feeders they have set meal times. They rarely wake me in the middle of the night but they aleays try waking me an hour before my alarm I have never been able to stop that after 9 years of consistently ignoring them until the alarm sounds.

  57. Great video.. I don’t know how it happened but my now 12 year old cats very early on synched with my sleep cycle, and they never wale me up. They even taught the third one I adopted years later not to wake me up when I am sleeping. I sleep with all three on my bed by the way. And it doesn’t matter how late I wake up, they wait for me to wake up. But as soon as they realize I am awake, they get in line to be petted.. I always thought I was just lucky but now realize that maybe I did not respond to them as I was about to fall asleep and they got that.. cats are the best.. ♥️

  58. Unfortunately i am up and down all night myself so kitty and i sleep better for about 5-6 hours before I go to work. She doesn't stand for being ignored . The whole British keep calm and carry on as she moves across every surface slapping things off it to make big noises and get one of her 3 humans moving. Lulu has a straight face so she kind of stares at you like a grumpy Wallace and Gromit character. You're not sure exactly what you did but you're sure the cat is tutting and shaking her head at you like you jumped a queue.

  59. I Don't Mind If My Cats Wake Me Up I Usauly Spend A Hour With Them Playing N Them Take A Nap 🐱😼🐾🐾🐾🐾🌴🌙

  60. Your a good man to help educate humans about our cats. These are common sense recommendations. Becareful though. Many cats are very well versed in revenge.

  61. I have four fur buddies….. They have an auto feeder, but we have rituals. Before we go to sleep, I clean their litter box, I call them into our sunroom with a “youhoo”. They run into the sunroom, that has a sliding window door, and we have a treasure hunt. We hide some treats all around the room, that they have to hunt for… We say goodnight, close the door, then we all sleep through the night…. we never hear them fuss and we are In the next room. In the morning they wait patiently until we get up…. We repeat this ritual every day and all of us sleep and all of us coexist in our awesome, harmonious home. 😽😽😽😽💚💚💚

  62. I am free feeding my 2 ragdolls. Went all well for 7 years. But now they are very steadily gaining weight. Thinking of stopping free feeding but I have no clue how I would do that. They are very difficult when it comes to changes in their food/eating.

  63. Man it’s just so hard to ignore my cat. She’ll scratch at my wallpaper and run to the windows, I try to bring her to my bed with me but 2/3 she runs away haha

  64. Honestly I just give my cat a fill of dry in the morning with fresh water before I go to work to munch on during the day, when I come home around 6PM I pet him a bit, play if he's in the mood put him outside in a harness in the backyard for an hour, I give him the wet and fresh water, he usually eats 3/4 of the wet then goes to nap, and then comes back later at night for a snack. Then it's bed time. I just go to bed and he comes an hour later to curl up on my feet.

    For me the secret was 1 or 2 hours outside when I come back home. He sneaks up on squirrels and birds, eats some grass, and takes a sunbath, then he comes back in when he's hungry.

  65. My youngest came to me trained to expect breakfast at 5-6 am. He used to purr and groom me until I'd wake up. A few times during this transition, (and occasionally afterward), I'd wake up with him in my arms. It was obvious that I slept through his attempt, grabbed him and held him but he was comfy so he fell asleep in my arms. When he was my former roommate's kitten, I'd hold him and he'd pass out in my arms.

  66. My cat always lets me sleep, unless she runs out of food and gets hungry during the night. Then I pay for this mistake. 😥

  67. What would you recommend for someone with four cats and a crazy schedule? I'm often away from the house for 12-13 hours when I'm working due to long shifts so free feeding is the only option without starving them. Free feeding is also the only thing they've ever known since they were kittens. I also don't work a "normal" schedule as I work nights and often don't go to bed until 5 or 6am. Lock them out or is there something else, Jackson?

  68. This is not working!!! This summer I decided that I have to try the violent solution. After our last disscusion in which again he completely ingored me I decided to send him in a summer military school. So he stayed there for three months to learn discipline and who is in charge in this damn house!!! Yeap, yes siiir. Little brat didnt have to many options. I m telling you. I expect him to come back next week with the same bus that picked him up before three months. I hope that the military school whould work!

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