You know the drill, you are in bed, covers pulled up, and you start to drift off to a wonderful dream. Then your cat starts scratching at the closed door or door frame. There goes your good night’s sleep. Or does it have to? Do you want to learn how to stop cat from scratching door at night? Is there a way to keep cats out of bedroom? Do you want to learn how to stop cat from scratching door at night? Can you learn how to keep a cat out of a room? Yes, absolutely!
In this article you will learn how to stop a cat from scratching your door using 4 different methods.
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Table of Contents
- How do you stop your cat from scratching at the door?
- 4 steps to stop a cat from scratching your bedroom door
How do you stop your cat from scratching at the door?
Every cat owner should be able to enjoy a healthy, undisturbed sleep at night. Yet as soon as you close the door, your cat or kitten starts to scratch, purr, and meow with an unbelievable intensity. Eventually, it ruins your night. Don’t forget the scratches and damage to your doors done by this destructive behaviors.
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4 steps to stop a cat from scratching your bedroom door
This article will teach you how to stop your cat from scratching the bedroom door at night. These tips will help keep an existing cat, new kitten, or even your dog away from your door. This will help you sleep without your pet from bothering you. To keep cats out of room that you don’t want them in, follow these 4 steps.
Step 1. Don’t reward your cat’s tries
What do you do when your cat is scratching at the door? Do you let him or her in? Do you yell at them or punish in some other way? Do you open a can of their favorite food? Do you toss them french fries to go away (learn can cats eat french fries). Whatever it is: Don’t do it!
The reason is that any attention you give to your cat is in their mind, positive reinforcement. If you give them food or treats after they’ve been scratching at your bedroom door, you have inadvertently taught them if they scratch your door, you give them treats. In general, ignoring inappropriate behavior we’ve found is the best way to reduce it.
Your cat is not trying to enter the room because they have to be everywhere. (Well, actually he or she does, but that’s beside the point.) Your cat wants your attention or they may be experiencing separation anxiety. Even if you yell at your cat or even if you punish them (please don’t use negative reinforcement like a spray bottle with water in it), it’s still attention. If your cat wants attention and gets it, they will repeat what they did to get it. Even if you didn’t mean to, you just taught your cat that their unwanted scratching will be rewarded.
Which leads us to a conclusion: If you provide any attention, your cat will scratch at the door more.
Therefore, you should ignore your cat completely. Within several days, provided you also follow the advice below, your cat may learn that their destructive scratching doesn’t result in them getting what they want, they’ll try it less and less.
Step 2. Feed your cat in meals and play with them before hand
There are several benefits to feed your cat in meals on a set feeding schedule. The benefits come when you play with them for at least several minutes before every meal. The longer you play with your cat before meals, the greater the benefit. This is because playing with your cat ( find out about others here ) is like they are hunting for their meal. They will expend energy during the playtime. Less energy means less inappropriate behavior such as scratching, meowing, purring, etc. later.
Wild cats naturally hunt before meals which playing sort of replicates this instinctive behavior. After a meal, cats have to regain the energy spent during the hunt, so they usually go for a nap. If you make meal time similar to your cats natural hunting instincts using different types of toys, they’ll enjoy their meal time more, expend more energy, and sleep deeply afterwards.We found the PetSafe SlimCat interactive toy and food dispenser worked great at this. It’s a ball with an adjustable opening to let out your cats dry kibble as slow as you want. This encourages your cat to play with the PetSafe SlimCat toy to get their meal. It holds up to 2/3rds of a cup of kibble. Best of all, it can be put into the dishwasher to keep it clean. It also comes in 4 different colors so you could have a different color for each of your cats. This also helped with territory issues during meal times as we could separate our cats with their food toy. To see the almost 18,000 reviews and the latest price on Amazon, click PetSafe SlimCat Interactive Toy.
If you play with your cat before every meal, they will understand how the day works and will be less troublesome at night.
If you have trouble with your cat eating your houseplants, this interactive toy is a great way for your cat to expend their excess energy.
An additional tip: serve the final meal of the day minutes before you go to sleep. It is best if your cat finishes only when you are in bed and pretend to be asleep.
Step 3. Make your bedroom entrance less appealing for your cat
One of the simplest way to stop your cat scratching the door at night is to close the door and place a device called ” sssCat ” on the floor in front of it. What is it? sssCat is a motion-activated pet deterrent that releases a burst of air every time anyone comes closer.
When your cat comes to your bedroom door to scratch at it, sssCat lets out a small burst of air. Your cat will not try scratching again very soon. If they try again, sssCat will do its job again. What this device provides is consistency of negative reinforcement for unwanted behavior. It doesn’t hurt your house cats but they definitely don’t like the puff of air. As a cat owner, you can test this by blowing into your cats face. They just love it don’t they? Just watch for their paw swinging at your face when you do this test. Or you can just take our word for it.
Best of all, your cat does not associate this negative reaction in any way to you the cat owner. This preserves your relationship. Pretty soon your cat will understand that the door is not a very friendly location. They will not even try to approach it. You can buy sssCat here on Amazon.
Another thing that many cats don’t like is a mat placed with double-sided tape stuck to the door. Cats don’t like putting their paws on sticky tape. As they won’t get near your door, they won’t be able to scratch, meow, or purr to get your attention. We’ve tried this and unfortunately our cats just ended up screaming because they couldn’t get the tape off their paws. They ended up in a corner, tape all over them, just screaming “help me”. The idea of having one side stuck to the floor to keep it there didn’t work for us. We also tried putting tin foil in front of our door. We found it later shredded. Our cats had a field day with it before they started their antics in front of our bedroom door.
What we’ve found works well is a the PetSafe ScatMat. It releases a small static shock when your cat (or dog) steps on it. It is battery operated, comes in several different sizes, and has 3 levels of correction. With a new cat, older cat, or new kitten, start with the lowest setting. Increase it if your cat doesn’t learn that stepping on the mat isn’t the desired behavior. We’ve found our cat and dogs learn very quickly not to go near the mat. The correction doesn’t hurt them, it’s just annoying to them as they don’t like the feeling on the bottom of their paws.
There are also other sizes of the PetSafe ScatMat such as this 30″ x 16″ wide one. The 48″ x 20″ PetSafe ScatMat is their large size. Our outdoor cat needed the highest setting because his paw pads were tougher than our house cats. An adult cat or older cat may also need the higher settings. Best of all, the mat can also be used to keep your dog off your couch, chair, and even your bed.
You can find more ways to keep your cat out of the bedroom here.
Step 4. Enrich their environment
Even as you try to teach your indoor cat to stay away from the bedroom, make sure you do not make they miserable and stressed. Like you, most owners keep their cat indoors. A new kitty or existing cat can become stressed by new things in their environment.
Make sure they have cat toys or other things to entertain them in their part of the house. Especially at night. What about a cat tree? Get more than one, and install some shelves on the walls so that your feline can climb , jump , and perch. Add some opportunities for solo play by tossing fake mice and other cat toys around. This Cat Ball Puzzle with 3 levels keeps our cats entertained. Read our article How to enrich an indoor cats life to find other ways to “catify” your home.
Add some scratching posts around the house. Cats as you know love to use their claws. Cats scratch, that’s what their claws are for. By providing an outlet for their scratching with a cat scratching post, your cat will be less likely to be scratching furniture or scratching carpet.
How soon should you expect results and stop your feline from scratching your bedroom door at night? In most cases, you will see some improvement within a few days. Yes, your mileage may vary. Every pet is different and learns at a different pace. If you are consistent (and that’s the hardest part), your cat’s behavior should change after two weeks.
Please remember that even after your efforts, you will still need to play with your cat. Keeping them entertained and giving them attention on your terms is key. This will help prevent him or her from waking you up at night again. Follow these 4 steps to get a better nights sleep and you’ll be healthier and happier. Your cat (and dog) will be healthier and happier too.
You have learned how to stop a cat from scratching your door using 4 different methods. This will go a long way towards a loving and happy life with your pet cat. And keeping your Pet Happy is what we all want.
Question: Why does my cat scratch the door at night?
Answer: There are several reasons why your cat may scratch the door at night. They may be trying to get your attention, be expressing their territorial nature, or trying to mark their territory. Your cat may also scratch the door as a way to relieve stress or boredom.
Question: How can I prevent my cat from scratching the door at night?
Answer: Follow these four steps. They are: not rewarding your cat’s behavior, feeding your cat in meals and playing with them beforehand, making your bedroom entrance less appealing to your cat, and enriching your cat’s environment.
Question: Why shouldn’t I reward my cat’s behavior when they scratch at my bedroom door?
Answer: Not rewarding your cat’s behavior is important because any attention you give your cat is positive reinforcement. If you give them food or treats after they scratch at your bedroom door, you have inadvertently taught them that if they scratch at your door, you’ll give them treats. Ignoring the behavior is the best way to reduce it.
Question: Should I punish my cat for scratching the door at night?
Answer: No. Punishing your cat for scratching the door at night is not recommended. Punishment can cause fear and anxiety in cats and can lead to other behavioral problems. Instead, focus on positive reinforcement and redirection techniques.
Question: How can I make my bedroom entrance less appealing to my cat?
Answer: You can try using deterrents such as double-sided tape, aluminum foil, (neither of which we’ve found worked for our cats) or a motion-activated air spray.
Question: How can playing with my cat before meals help stop them from scratching my bedroom door?
Answer: Playing with your cat before meals helps them release extra energy. When your cat is tired after playtime, they are less likely to engage in destructive behaviors such as scratching, meowing, or purring.
Question: What are some ways to enrich my cat’s environment to help stop them from scratching my bedroom door?
Answer: You can enrich your cat’s environment by providing them with scratching posts, toys, cat perches, and shelves.
Question: When should I seek professional help for my cat’s scratching behavior?
Answer: If your cat’s scratching behavior is causing damage to your home or is accompanied by other behavioral issues, such as aggression or anxiety, it may be necessary to seek professional help from a veterinarian or animal behaviorist. They can help identify the underlying cause of the behavior and develop a tailored treatment plan.