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pamghatten

Lonely Cat Meowing All Night

pamghatten
April 23, 2019

My 15 year old male cat Bailey passed a month ago, he had cancer and we treated him for it for over a year. As the vet said, we put up a good fight. I have one cat (Mama) left and 2 dogs.


Mama was a barn cat that came into my home 13+ years ago. She was best buddies with the other cats in the house (I had 4 other cats in the house at the time) and tolerated the dogs, humans she basically ignores.


Now she's the only cat left, and she's very lonely. After 30+ years of having cats, I am NOT bringing another cat into the house. When she is no longer around, I would like a break from litter boxes and hairballs.


The problem is, she meows excessively on and off, all night long. We've been to the vet, she prescribed a tranquilizer, but I can't medicate her all the time ... I've tried Feliway, it made her worse. She has plenty of food, water, treats, toys ... but I know she hates being the only cat.


But I'm exhausted. Today I am so tired, she woke me up numerous times in the middle of the night .. I'm at my wits ends.


Any suggestions besides getting another cat to keep her company?

Comments (15)

  • Ninapearl

    this might sound silly but what about one of those stuffed animals that emits womb sounds and maybe couple that with some sort of warming blanket or heating pad. maybe just making her more comfy might alleviate some of her anxiety.


    i feel for you! at one point years ago, i lost one of my 2 great danes. the one left behind became so clingy and needy that i couldn't even take a relaxing bath w/o him standing over me and panting in my face. i wasn't planning on getting another dane until i had time to grieve my loss but then, olivia came into rescue and well, the rest is history. she helped heal my heart and she and bentley became the best of friends!

    pamghatten thanked Ninapearl
  • pamghatten

    Thanks Nina, I'll take any suggestions even ones you consider silly ... and now to find a cuddly stuffed cat for her ... I'm so tired today, I'm having a problem concentrating at work.

  • woodnative

    Perhaps fostering a cat of similar age.

    pamghatten thanked woodnative
  • girlnamedgalez8a

    I am dealing with the same thing. My cat is 14 and the last survivor of 3. It does seem that all of the cats that I have known have become more vocal as they get older. The one thing that my cats all loved are fleece blankets. Take an old fleece throw and cut it up . place these pieces where you want them to rest. My cat will always find one to curl up on. She wakes me up 2-3 times a night now. I hope that you find something that helps.

    pamghatten thanked girlnamedgalez8a
  • annztoo

    I would suggest the same as woodnative. Bring in a foster cat, either a young one or an older cat the rescue is having difficulty adopting out. Each rescue group is different so try to find out all their rules & regulations before fostering. Any vet bills should be paid by the rescue and some even pay for the food.

    I know at some point I'll be down to only one cat (have 4 now) and don't intend to bring in another one permanently. But, I've fostered before and would do it again. Besides helping that animal you're also making it possible for rescue/shelter to take in another one.

    pamghatten thanked annztoo
  • pamghatten

    Thanks all, but I'm really not adding another cat. Foster or adopt .. I've been living with cats for over 30 years, and my allergist is thrilled that I am finally down to one cat. I've ordered a Snuggle Cat, it purrs and has a heartbeat ... we'll see how that works. I'm taking the dogs to the vet on Saturday and will ask if there is anything else they recommend besides the tranquilizer.

  • annztoo

    One other suggestion. Have you tried leaving lights on in one room, along with the TV or a radio? Sometimes the background noise can be calming to them vs the total silence.

    Of course it helps if one of her favorite sleeping spots is in that room.

    pamghatten thanked annztoo
  • Ninapearl

    I've ordered a Snuggle Cat


    aww, i hope it works for you. i'll be interested to know so please update when you can.

    pamghatten thanked Ninapearl
  • pamghatten

    annztoo, I'll have to think about that one. Her favorite place is on my bed .. so lights and a radio wouldn't work while I'm trying to sleep .. but maybe in the room where her food is. I'll have to see if that would work.

    Nina - I'll let you know .. they use the Snuggle Cat at rescues, so we'll see if it helps.

  • eccentric

    Best of luck with the Snuggle Cat - I look forward to hearing how you make out with it. Re your cat, any chance she is deaf - we had a born deaf cat and she LOVED to meow at very high frequencies. Our dog who is 15 (and very cat like) is now deaf and loves to bark - truthfully he has always been a barker, but now it is much worse. He can hear certain frequencies so I expect that is part of it. I feel sorry for him because how do you explain going deaf to a dog. I hope you get some rest.

    By the way, we failed fostering - as in the fosters became ours. I greatly admire those that can do it, but we can't. Better to know though.


    pamghatten thanked eccentric
  • pamghatten

    thanks eccentric .. she reacts to noises, especially the cat food can opening, so I don't think she's deaf. And I would fail at fostering too.

  • annztoo

    One of our cats sometimes meows at night, usually bored (from sleeping all day) and other times demanding to be fed even when there's food out in the kitchen. I can't function without sleep and my life saver has been a scat mat. (Don't know why I didn't mention this earlier!) I place it outside my bedroom door and with the door closed I can sometimes hear meowing but it isn't enough to completely wake me up. There are cheaper versions of the mat available but I have owned my Scatmat for 8 years and it's still working great. Just replace batteries as needed, which isn't often. It rolls up for storage and lays flat when unrolled.

    The mat has 3 levels of 'strength' you can set it to. When introducing a cat to it I set it at the lowest level. To me, it feels like strong static electricity so it's not painful but does get ones attention.

    Now, most of the time I don't even have to turn the mat on. All it takes is for the cats to see it and they walk the other way. Sort of like flag training with invisible fencing. : )

    Your kitty may not be happy not sleeping in your bed, but it sounds like neither of you is sleeping anyway. :/

    Also, I've been the tranqulizer route with another cat and it only made her condition worse, plus her whole personality changed. Wasn't worth the effort and $$ for me.

    pamghatten thanked annztoo
  • pamghatten

    Nina asked for an update on the Snuggle Cat, but I can't say one way or another if it's helping her. Sometimes I think it does, other times I don't.

    The vet prescribed gabapentin for her, which I give to her before bed the nights I have to work the next day. She's generally quiet until about 5 am, when she starts yowling loudly .. I get up at 6 am to get ready for work, so I can deal with that.

    I give her a break from the meds on the weekend, and am learning to go back to sleep after she's finished yowling.

    It's now been almost 2 months since my other cat passed, I keep hoping she will get used to life the way it is now.

  • Ninapearl

    thanks so much for the update! wish it had worked out better for you but it sounds like you have things under control. at least she isn't keeping you up all night. can i ask why gabapentin? i take it myself for nerve pain and my dane girl, olivia, also takes it. i have never noticed any sort of sedation effect is that's what you're after. hmmm...

    pamghatten thanked Ninapearl
  • pamghatten

    Nina, it is used as a calming med for cats ... she said it's often used for cats that have too much stress when coming to the vet. And we also think she has some arthritis issues, and it can help with that.

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