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The battle is on... and they're winning!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
OK, my two 7 month old cats do not sleep in the room with us at night, because they are just too rambunctious! They have the entire rest of the house as their own all night. However, that is not good enough for these two. They start at 5:00 a.m. meowing loudly outside our door. Now, I could (and did) ignore this, but they upped the ante recently. They have started scratching and clawing the carpet outside our door, leaving little carpet bits everywhere. They have actually pulled the carpet away from the wall in places. I do not want the carpet ruined, so what do I do?? Jump right up, feed them, and let them outside, which is what they want. I know I am rewarding their bad behavior, but I don't know what else to do to keep them from tearing up the carpet. I tried leaving the door open a couple of nights, but that's just disastrous. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
post #2 of 7
What about switching them to free feeding? This might work if you feed them dry food.

And what about a cat door so they can get in and out on their own? Then they can come and go and you don't have to get up.

post #3 of 7
LDG's suggestions are good, as usual. I have no personal experience with this topic, but I have repeatedly heard the following suggestions made:

● Use upside-down carpet runner or tin foil to cover the area where they're scratching. Ditto for double-sided sticky tape that you'd place on top of some smooth, removable platfom. Most cats will not like the feel of any of these surfaces and will therefore learn to avoid them. This is probably the easiest and cheapest of all the methods that I will list, and has the fewest drawbacks IMO.

● You might also try a scat mat, which emits an uncomfortable (but harmless) shock/vibration when the cats walk on it. Some people are understandably opposed to this method though.

● There is also a product called ssscat, which is basically a can of compressed air (like what you'd use to clean the dust and dirt from your computer keyboard) with a motion sensor. You'd strategically place it on the floor outside your bedroom before going to bed, and when your cats walk into the "line of fire" so to speak, ssscat emits a short and harmless burst of air which should scare them away.

● Lastly, some people have recommended bringing your vacuum cleaner into your bedroom, turning it on, but leaving it unplugged. When your cats start to scratch and claw at the carpet, plug the vacuum cleaner in for a few seconds. After a few incidents, they hopefully will soon learn to associate the carpet scratching with the (presumably) unpleasant sound of the vacuum cleaner --- and they won't even blame you for scaring them. Of course, logistically this might not even be possible for you. And some people, like me, wouldn't be able to go back to sleep easily after having fully awakened by a loud noise like that.

Hopefully one or more of these will do the trick for you. I'm sure there are numerous other ideas as well. Obviously different cats react differently to different things. As an aside, I would think that if your cats are at all skittish then you probably would not want to use ssscat or the vacuum cleaner.
post #4 of 7
Theres two basic choices of dealing with this situation....................First is, like you mentioned, getting up, feed them and let them out. Everyone is satisfied to the easiest, best ability. Second, which is a challenge, is to ignore their tantrums and try different deterrents to keep them from destroying the carpets and throwing tantrums. Just remember that they are looking for a response when they do this, so any sign of you being awoken, yelling, moving, tells them its working. So either stick to your guns and no means no, or give in and get some peace afterwards.
post #5 of 7
Have a rolled up newspaper next to your bed...the next time you hear them start meowing at the door, quietly get up, crack the door open enough to slip your arm with the rolled up paper out of; then just whap on the door frame really good. You can tell them to "scat" or "go away" if you like, but I prefer not to acknowledge them at all...just slip the paper out, and make noise with it, to scare them away. Mine have to occasionally be shut out of our room because they can be loud at times, and the newspaper works everytime for them; they hardly ever meow at the door anymore, even if it's been a long time between times that they have had to be locked out. They know that the scarey noise maker is going to 'get them'!
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks all. I could totally ignore it if it weren't for the carpet. They are ruining it! Last night I put aluminum foil all around the door. It did not slow them down at all. They do have food out all the time, so it's really just more of an issue of wanting in, or something...? They do like to watch me pour fresh food in their bowl, weirdos! My husband is really at the end of his rope. He got up last night and yelled at them really good. I don't want them to be scared of us, but we've got to sleep, and mostly, I don't want to have to replace the carpet. I may try the sssscat product. They are not really scared of much. The cat door is something we have toyed with, but we're afraid we might have other cats (or racoons, possums, etc) coming in. Again, thanks for the advice.

OH, the vacuum cleaner idea is a hoot! I can just see me hopping up at 4 in the morning and turning on the vacuum cleaner!!
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Well, I bought a product at Wal-mart that is supposed to keep dogs and cats away from a certain area. I sprayed it last night all around the door, and it seemed to work. We'll see. Thanks for the advice. Yesterday when I got home, the cats were actually playing with the aluminum foil. I have never.... I had another cat a couple of years ago that would freak out if I even opened the drawer where I kept the foil!
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