..is easier said than done.
A few months ago our cat started to develop a sleeping or more precisely waking up pattern which clashed with ours. She would wake up at 4 and hassle us by scratching the carpet, cupboard door and anything else she could get her claws on. It’s an incredibly annoying sound when you are tired and want to sleep. After trying all sorts of things to stop her – hurling pillows at her, letting the cat flap open, locking her in the kitchen or trying to entice her to bed for a cuddle, we finally got professional help. We made an appointment for a phone consultation with Vicky Halls. We had to fill in a long form explaining what the problem was and details about our cat. When the day of consultation came I asked my husband to talk to her. We were not only told that essentially we need to try and ignore her scratching, but also start watching her diet. So we started weighing her food. Ignoring her scratching at 4 a.m was not so easy. In fact we had 2 sleepless nights, but then she seemed to settle for our time when the alarm clock goes off, which is 6. We went on our holiday in the same week, which reinforced the new regime as Bobby stayed at home and was looked after by my mother-in-law who visited at about 8 in the morning. Bobby had no-one to hassle!
When we came back the sleeping routine stayed with her for a few weeks, but she developed the endearing habit of climbing up the bed and sleeping between my legs (on the duvet, not under!). (She slept on top of my pillow when we were away and obviously missed us very much.) The downside of this habit is that it isn’t comfortable for me, but I manage to eventually change my position so we both get more comfortable.
She also lost a bit of weight due to the new feeding regime. But now it’s November and we have let the routine slip a bit. If we don’t tire her out in the evening and make sure she goes to bed at the same time as us she will wake us too early which isn’t great. Thursday we will see the vet for her annual booster and hopefully he will tell us that Bobby has the right weight. Because she has her winter coat it is hard for us to determine her weight. We have stopped weighing her food and because it’s colder she may have gained weight again.