|Purred: Wed Feb 15, '06 4:52pm PST |
|I agree - maximizing playtime right before you wants to sleep will indeed help you.
Mommy also gives me a light snack (1/8-1/4 c. kibble) as the last thing she does before turning out the light. Eating even this little bit means that my appetite is usually satisfied until much later in the morning, so I don't wake Mommy and Daddy.
Also, repeatedly waking up the humans is a LEARNED behavior, repeated because it yields positive results. So if you get up and feed your kitty when they wake you up at 4:30, you are only reinforcing the behavior by rewarding him or her with food.
To change this behavior rquires strong will on your part - DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES give in to your cat by playing with them or feeding them when they wake you up early. Ignore them. Buy earplugs and an eyemask. Put them outside the bedroom. Confine them in the bathroom. Do whatever you have to do to deprive them of any positive feeback for this negative behavior.
*Important note* Expect and plan for an "extinction burst" - where the behavior will get worse and more insistent as your cat gets frusterated and tries to MAKE you give in and get up and play or feed him or her. This worsening occurs right before the kitty finally "gets it" that no amount of bugging you will wake you up - so absolutely do not give up and give in during this worsening!! It's NOT a sign that your cat will never get it - quite the opposite, it is the most important sign that your cat is figuring your new behavior rules out and doesn't like them. The worsening of behavior WILL go away soon after!
|my posts | my page | msg me | gift me | become friends|| [notify]|