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Why Does My Cat Attack Me At Night?

If your cat has been attacking you at night you may be wondering why this is happening…

Why does my cat attack me at night? 

Cats attack at night because this is when they are most active. Without anything to chase or attack, they may divert this hunting drive towards you and attack you.  Also, The movements you make while resting in bed at night may attract your cat to attack while it is in a hunting frenzy.

So, now you know. But, should I lock my cat out of my bedroom? How can I prevent this from happening? Why does my kitten attack me in the night? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

Should I lock my cat out of my bedroom?

Sphinx cat.

Sphinx cat.

It is okay to lock your cat out of the bedroom as long as it does not limit them from necessities such as food, water, and a warm place to rest. If all these vital things are available elsewhere in the house, then no harm will be done.

If your cat is a severe nuisance while you try to sleep, and it disrupts your sleep, you may benefit from locking it out of the bedroom through the night.

Some cats will think very little about being locked out and carry on their silly business running around the areas of the house while you sleep easy.

Other cats may not take this action and become stressed they cannot get in your room. They may scratch, meow and howl at your door and keep you awake anyway! The response of your cat will depend on their personality.

How can I prevent my cat from attacking me at night?

You can prevent your cat from attacking you in the night by setting some ground rules and boundaries around your sleep schedule and your cat’s behavior.

Anyone who owns a cat will know how hard it can be to set ground rules with an animal that simply does whatever it pleases! If your cat’s aggression at night affects your sleep schedule, you need to set some boundaries. Here are our top tips for preventing your cat from attacking you through the night.

  • Tire them out in the day – try to get your cat active through the day by playing with them and offering them lots of toys. You can also make a point of tiring them out just before you retire for the night. That is why they are too tuckered out to bother you.
  • Consistent schedule – feed your cat at a consistent time morning and night to get them used to the concept of a schedule. That way, they can get used to your bedtime routines too and know they won’t be fed through the night, only on your terms!
  • Consider a friend – getting another cat with the same energy levels as your night owl cat may provide them with someone to play with and divert their attention from you.
  • Give them their own room – a dedicated cat room with all they need, such as a litter box and water may keep your cat away from you through the night. Keep this room packed with toys, scratching posts and obstacles so your cat can roam around it at night.

Why does my kitten attack me at night? 

Your kitten attacks at night to burn off excess energy and explore its hunting instincts.

Kittens are full of energy, especially compared to older cats. Kittens are still learning a routine and the boundaries of what is allowed and what is not tolerated. 

Your kitten will follow all its high-energy hunting instincts through the night, and without much in the way of prey around a regular household, you trying to sleep in your bed can make a great target!

You can lock them out of the room or set up a designated cat room, but they may find this very lonely and negative since they are only young.

While your cat is still a kitten is a great time to set firm boundaries. Consistently set your kitten away from you and use a firm and deep tone to tell it off. Be careful not to encourage aggressive behaviour by petting them or playing with them through the night, as this will just reinforce them to do it more!

Why does my boyfriend’s cat attack me at night? 

Your boyfriend’s cat attacks you through the night because it is not used to having you around the house in the dark.

Dealing with your cat attacking you is one thing, but someone else cat is another story! If your boyfriend’s cat has it in for you, it’s easy to feel like it is a personal vendetta.

But the truth is cats are very habituated and changed to routines, and things around their home can cause them to stress out. Your presence in your boyfriend’s home will be strange to the cat – your footsteps sound different, you smell odd, and you take up space in their territory.

Respect your boyfriend’s cat’s space. Remember, it is their home; you are just a visitor!

Why has my cat attacked my feet and drawn blood in the night? 

Your cat has likely attacked your feet in the night as your feet move about during sleep and can be alluring to a playful cat!

It’s not pleasant when your cat attacks are drawn blood. While you sleep, your feet are the most vulnerable part of you (click here if your cat is smelling them), especially if a blanket doesn’t protect them. 

Don’t encourage this behavior; ignore it until the phase passes.

Why does my cat attack me in the morning when it’s hungry?

Cats know you are the ones that feed them. So if they are hungry and you are still sleeping, then by attacking you, they are trying to get you to feed them!

Get an automatic cat feeder, and your cat will learn not to associate you with breakfast and leave you to sleep in peace!

Are cats nocturnal hunters? 

Cat focusing on a prey.

Cat focusing on a prey.

It’s no secret that cats are natural hunters, and they are great at what they do. They can become enraged at the slightest movement, chasing and taking down whatever they deem to be prey. 

In addition, cats usually hunt at night. Naturally, cats are neither diurnal (day-time) or nocturnal (night-time) hunters; instead, they are classified as crepuscular. Crepuscular animals are most active in the dawn and dusk of the day.

Many domesticated cats now lean more towards nocturnal activity when potential prey around is most active such as mice and bugs. Furthermore, with a pet cat’s life of luxury, they tend to be relatively inactive through the day, sleeping for extended periods and then having bursts of energy through the night.

How do you calm down an aggressive cat? 

You can calm an aggressive by ensuring they are not feeling stressed and have a safe place to go. 

Aggression comes from your cat feeling uncomfortable, so respect their space, keep them away from kids and other pets.

If the aggression persists, talk to your vet; there may be a medical issue causing the behavior.

Why does my cat attack me out of nowhere? 

Cats tend to attack you out of nowhere because they are ambush hunters.

This means they like to sneak up on their prey undetected and pounce on them. If you are the prey, they are stalking; they can quickly appear from nowhere and attack you.

If your cat attacks from out of nowhere when they were sitting calmly with you, you may have upset them by petting them wrong, or they may be feeling unwell.

Why is my cat attacking me and purring at the same time? 

Your cat may be attacking you and purring all at once as it is not liking something you are doing. Purring is a way of showing submission and saying they won’t hurt you.  If they are attacking and purring, it is likely a warning. Something along the lines of “I like you. I don’t want to hurt you, but you are bothering me”.

Lindsey Browlingdon