Meow. Meow meow. Meow?
Chances are that you weren’t able to understand any of that, and how could you, you are not a cat and the two of you obviously speak different languages. That doesn’t mean that you can’t communicate, though and that there isn’t a message behind that meow.
Cats will let you know what they want or need through various ways. One of them is meowing. And while meows may sound charming initially, they can get annoying really fast. Felines would yowl and howl, hiss and purr to get our attention. It can happen at any time, even though some pet owners would swear on their lives that their pet cat specifically decides to do all of those at ungodly hours while they should be sleeping.
So anyway, that makes it important that you identify what kitty is trying to tell you right away.
There are five kinds of meowing cats do and every type conveys a different message.
- Chirps and trills – usually used to make the kittens follow mommy cat. When aimed at humans, it means the cat wants you to follow her.
- Purring – a sign of contentment. The cat is happy. Although they can also purr when anxious or sick to comfort herself.
- Growling, hissing, spitting – expresses annoyance, fright, anger or aggression
- Yowling, howling – the cat is in distress
- Chattering, twittering – it’s basically your cat daydreaming about snapping her prey’s neck
Cats use a wide range of vocalizations to communicate with other cats. But meows? They reserve that for people. So what does her meow really mean? Is she asking to be let out? Let in? Maybe she’s demanding for play time or food? What does your cat want?
Cats sleep about 16 hours every day. They are, however, rather active at night. That’s when mousy prey is usually up and about after all. So your cat will be on patrol whether indoors or outdoors. That is perfectly normal.
If your cat suddenly decides that, hey, you’ve both gotten enough sleep already, she will try to wake you up. You’ll likely get a few nibbles or head bonks. If those don’t work, she’ll start meowing. And it will continue escalating in volume until you’re awake.
Once you get up, your cat will likely dart to the empty food bowl. She wants a companion while she eats. If you think filling it up with food will stop the meowing, you’re right. But it’s a temporary fix. Know that giving in to your cat’s demands when she does the yowling just tells her that she can do that anytime to get her way. You’ve been warned.
Sometimes, though, excessive meowing may be prompted by health issues. Your cat may be deaf, for example. If she’s old, she may be suffering from a feline version of Alzheimer’s. Some cats also howl excessively when going through separation anxiety. And then there are those with thyroid, heart or kidney issues.
Meow is not an all-purpose word. It could mean so many different things to your pet cat. So learn to identify the differences between each meow and you’ll have a better shot at finding out what your cat wants, and maybe get back to sleep sooner.