Wednesday 26 April 2023

Domestic cats just don't understand why we sleep throughout the night

This TikTok video demonstrates what I mean in the title. The couple's cat constantly tries to wake them up by biting their arm and pricking their noses. It looks bad because it is 2-months' worth of action compressed into 2 minutes but the message is clear: their cat is active during the night as domestic cats generally are and they are not. Their cat wants them to join him.

As domestic cats relate to us as surrogate moms and therefore as cats, they find it impossible to comprehend why our behaviour is so strange in that we refuse to be active at a time when cats are naturally active.
@laurenjenel12 Did we sleep at all? Yes. Was it good sleep? 🤷🏻‍♀️ #fyp#befypoupage #catsoftiktok #cattok #catsvideosoftiktok #securitycamera #blinksecuritycamera #trending #laurenjenel12 #catsvideo ♬ original sound - The preppy three🌸

Domestic care are generally 'crepuscular' meaning active at dawn and dusk but they can be active at any time, often at night. Their circadian rhythm certainly clashes with ours.

Humans normally have very set patterns of sleep and activity.  When it is dark it is time to sleep. When it is light it is activity time. No so for the domestic cat who sees night time as great opportunity to find prey animals as they are often active at night to avoid predators!

The desire to go hunting at night is present for full-time indoor cats when prey is never available. Many domestic cats will adjust their lifestyle under these circumstances and reduce their nighttime activities. I don't think they'll squeeze them out of existence. That is asking too much.

They will subdue their instinctive desire to be active when their caregiver sleeps to fit it. To match the human circadian rhythm - sometimes.

The problem we see in the video is perhaps the biggest 'culture clash' between the human and cat. It is a barrier to a successful relationship.

Cat owners overcome it. They get used to having their cat bite their arm to try and wake them up or prick their nose with the middle claw of their favoured paw.

These two methods to wake up humans are very typical of domestic cats.

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