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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Cat meowing loudly! Help!

I adopted a stray cat a couple of years ago, and named it Max. Vet estimated its age at around 8-9 years. It's a male, and has been neutered in the past. It's a special cat that seems to thrive on human company, it follows you around the house like a dog, and loves to be petted. In the Spring-Fall, it likes to be outside, though I always bring it inside for the night. It's early March now, and though it's still quite cold outside (I live in Canada), for several weeks now it's been meowing quite loudly from time to time, usually at night. For the last 2 days, its meowing has become even louder, and it always wants to go outside, even though it's quite cold out. I don't recall it having this behavior last Spring. I know the cat can't be in heat because it's neutered, and maybe it's got a bad case of Cabin Fever from being inside most of the winter (other than short stays outside once or twice a day), but is there something else that can explain this loud meowing at night in an older cat??? It kept me up a lot last night (meowing and scratching at my bedroom door), and I don't want to send it outside because it's too cold (-10C last night). Any ideas/suggestions??
Thanks.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 12:10 AM
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

Your cat is a "he" not an "it" -- I have to wonder if that has any relevance to your problem.

Is your cat scratching at the door to get IN? Have you tried letting him in to sleep with you? Sleeping with their people is a position of great honor and delight for most cats.

The other possibility is just that he remembers it's mating season, even though he's neutered, and those old urges still faintly call.

Third possibility is that he wants attention, you get up out of bed to try to make him stop, and that gives him what he wants. There are a LOT of threads here about how to deal with that problem. Probably found easiest using the keywords "attention" and "meowing"

Fourth possibility is his hearing is deteriorating.

Whatever you choose to do between #1 and #3 you must be consistent and you must be persistent and you must be patient. Giving in on any one of those three and you're back to square one.

Good luck.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

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Originally Posted by coaster
Your cat is a "he" not an "it" -- I have to wonder if that has any relevance to your problem.
Thank you for your response. Indeed, Max is a "he"

Quote:
Originally Posted by coaster
Is your cat scratching at the door to get IN? Have you tried letting him in to sleep with you? Sleeping with their people is a position of great honor and delight for most cats.
The cat was acquired at the insistence of my teenage son, who stays with me part-time. I suppose Max gets less attention when my son is not here, but that is the reality. I feed him and care for him well, but am not predisposed to give him as much attention and affection as Max seems to require. And these days, he seems to require more than he's ever had. He occasionally sleeps with my son, who leaves his bedroom door open, whereas I keep my door closed. But very often he will be meowing loudly even if my son is here and bedroom door open. It's really hard to fathom.

Occasionally, all I have to do is step out of the room that Max is in and step into another room and the loud meowing starts. As if he's scared or something. I should note that during the day, throughout winter, Max spends the whole day alone inside the house. It's never seemed to be a problem before. But his behaviour of late has been rather uncharacteristic. Could it be a sign of senility of sorts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by coaster
The other possibility is just that he remembers it's mating season, even though he's neutered, and those old urges still faintly call.
That may be a possibility, though I don't see too many (if any) stray cats in my neighbourhood that he could be having an eye on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by coaster
Third possibility is that he wants attention, you get up out of bed to try to make him stop, and that gives him what he wants. There are a LOT of threads here about how to deal with that problem. Probably found easiest using the keywords "attention" and "meowing"
I have talked above about Max's occasional great need for attention (often he behaves more like a dog, unlike any other cat that I've known in the past; I was more used to cats being rather aloof).

Quote:
Originally Posted by coaster
Fourth possibility is his hearing is deteriorating.
Perhaps that is possible, he has ear mite infection last year, that the vet dealt with, so perhaps it resulted in inner ear damage. I don't understand that linkage with loud meowing in the middle of the night.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 10:39 PM
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

Max sees you as his caretaker and wants attention from you. Cats HATE closed doors if their humans are on the other side of them. He wants access to you as well as your son.

You asked if it could be senility...it could be, this is one of the symptoms. But if they estimated his age accurately, then he's very young for something like that. I wouldn't expect it unless a cat was over 16-17.

I suspect, he's just not getting enough attention. Cats are not aloof creatures, I've always been of the opinion that you get out of them what you put in. In your case, it seems like you've got the rare situation where you're not putting in much, but have a cat who is rewarding you anyway. Enjoy him, give him that attention, it's very rewarding. A good rousing play session with Da Bird or a laser pointer is a good way to have some fun and bond.


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 11:11 PM
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

Yes, sounds like Max is on a campaign to get you to pay attention to him (and it's working, no? Smart kitty!) Cats are changeable, too. One day the favorite chair is abandoned and the window seat is the new spot, then counter in the hall is the place to be...

Our gray girl Gracie was content to sleep elsewhere in the house at night until after a whole year living with us. Then she began making noise in the early morning etc. etc. and now, some months later, she has accomplished her goal and the bedroom door is now open - she joins us last thing at night when we go to bed, to curl up on top of the covers next to us until the alarm goes in the morning. She is not disruptive at all, and it seems to make her deeply content.

You can stay one step ahead of Max, if you want, by paying attention to him before he makes a lot of noise - with something tossed his way to catch his attention, or left for him to discover and play with. You may find that he's quite communicative, once you begin to interact with him on a more complex level.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2009, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

Thanks for the advice, all. Indeed, Max may be deprived of some attention these days, I have a lot of things on my mind, and lots of things to do inside and out of the house. And I suppose my son is probably giving him considerably less attention than he was when we first acquired him. I'll remind him that he has to spend time with him if he wants to keep him as a house pet.
Cheers!
p.s. I was going to attach a picture of Max but am getting a message that "the board attachment quota has been reached"
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2009, 07:38 PM
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

Yes, the CF server space dedicated for photos is at full capacity and there is no more room. You would have to load your photo at a different website that allows sharing/linking. I like to use PhotoBucket.com because it is free and easy for me to use.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-08-2009, 09:09 PM
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Re: Cat meowing loudly! Help!

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Originally Posted by Heidi n Q
Yes, the CF server space dedicated for photos is at full capacity and there is no more room.
The default disk space for attachments is 50 MB and seeing as how the typical hosting plan provides Gigabytes of disk space, the default attachment limit is artificially low. Even if it was doubled, it would be a fraction of the host capacity. Of course, I don't know what it's set at here, but seeing as how this is a new board, I'm guessing it's probably still sitting at default.

I'd suggest using photobucket anyway; they've got neat editing, slide-show, and movie-making features not available with an attachment.
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