Before I got a cat, I’d always thought how wonderful it would be to snuggle up with my feline companion at night. Its comforting purr and familiar scent will work better than any lavender product. All this changed when I got my first cat.
Having cat hair all over my pillow as well as the occasional poop stain on my clean bedsheets wasn’t my idea of a great night’s sleep. Getting woken up by my cat every 30 minutes wasn’t ideal either.
Cats can be really stubborn and persistent at times. Is it really possible to keep your cat off the bed?
Yes it is possible to keep your cat off the bed with proper training. Training a cat isn’t similar to training a dog and it requires a lot more time and energy. There are many techniques that you can use to let your cat know your bed is off-limits at all times.
In this article, we will be taking an in-depth look at the viable techniques which you can use to keep your cat off your sacred bed.
Can You Train Your Cat To Not Sleep On Your Bed?
As a seasoned cat parent, I have to be upfront and let you know that training your cat can feel like asking a stone to move on its own.
It can feel like a futile event and makes you wana scream at the sky.
BUT…it can be done with the proper training techniques and a lot of patience.
Cats aren’t pack animals and people pleasers like dogs. They are used to a life of solitude and don’t take orders from anyone. However, thanks to many centuries of domestication, most cats have mellowed out a little.
I’ve tried many ways to make sleeping with my cat work. But unlike some of you, I don’t really have a cat that can sleep right through the night without disturbing me. Furthermore, I’ve developed a slight allergic reaction to cats which makes it all the more important to keep him off my bed.
If you are having the same problems with your cat and would like to have your good night’s sleep back, here are some of my techniques that you can try.
1. Start Training Your Cat Immediately
The best time to start training your cat was yesterday. When it comes to reformative training for cats, you need more time than you think.
When I train my dog not to do something, most times it only takes a few days. When it comes to my cat, my answer is always “For as long as it takes”.
The best time to start training a cat is when it is still a kitten. This is when its mind is still very malleable and has yet to form hard habits.
Imprint as many do’s and don’s into your cat during this period and you’ll have a much easier time as pet owners down the road.
Adult cats usually have a mind of their own and can be more resistant to behavioral training. It definitely takes more time so don’t give up hope.
2. Don’t Half Arse It
Eight out of ten times, your cat will probably ignore you when it’s told to do s something. That’s just the way cats are in general.
This is why it is very important to be as consistent as possible when telling your cat to get off your bed.
When you see your cat sleeping on the bed, immediately tell it to get off or carry it down. You can’t afford to send your cat mix signals when trying to teach it something new.
Don’t have a change of heart when you see your cat looking so comfortable and adorable while sleeping on your bed. Just march on over and carry it off the bed.
Kitty will get the drift after you’ve done it for the 2000th time.
As they say, “Repetition is the key to mastery”.
3. Keep Your Bedroom Door Closed
There are a few places in my home where I do not allow my pets to enter. That would be my kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms.
Restrict access to these rooms by having the doors closed at all times. By closing your bedroom door, you are directly telling your cat this room is not for cats.
Don’t be surprised to see your cat scratching at the door and meowing loudly to get it. Cats want what they can’t have.
It is also possible to keep a cat out of a room without a door. You just need to come up with more innovative ways of blocking access to the room.
If your cat can’t get into your bedroom, your furry companion can’t get on your bed.
4. Don’t Hang Out In The Bedroom With Your Cat
Cat owners should not spend time with their cats in the bedroom at all. Many cat owners feel that it’s fine to play or cuddle with their cats on the bed and shoo them away when it’s bedtime.
Doesn’t quite work this way with cats.
You need to realize that once your cat has access to your bedroom, the bedroom has a new owner and it ain’t you.
Put a cat in a new room and it will start marking its scent all over the place. A cat feels more secure and confident in areas that have its own scent.
Cats do this by rubbing its face and scratching on surfaces. Once a cat has a place marked, it would want to keep returning to it to refresh its scent.
Keep your bedroom off-limits to your cat at all times even if you have no intention of letting it sleep on your bed.
5. Get Your Cat Its Own Bed
If you are fine with your cat sleeping in your bedroom but just not on the same bed, getting a cat bed for your cat will help solve the problem.
It is important to place the cat bed on the same level as your bed to let your cat feel that it is sleeping on the same bed as you.
Having a heated cat bed will come in very handy for those cold winter months when your cats need extra heating to stay warm.
6. Use A Deterrent
Using a deterrent has been a very effective way of keeping my cat off my bed. The goal here is to use a deterrent that isn’t harmful or toxic to cats but does a decent job of making them think twice.
A spray bottle filled with water is what I use.
Some cat owners feel that spraying a cat with water is cruel and uncalled for. The goal here is not to hose your cat down with a water hose until it is drenched.
Just a little spritz of the spray bottle is more than enough to deter most cats.
Don’t let your cat sleep on your bed for hours before you spray it. Once you notice your cat making its way to your bedroom, give it a little refreshing spray to deter it.
Do not put essential oils or anything spicy like peppers in the water. These substances aren’t safe for cats and can do more harm than good.
If spraying water doesn’t really deter your cat, another effective cat repellent is to place some coins or marbles in a soda can and rattle it near your cat.
Many cats aren’t fond of loud harsh noises due to their sensitive hearing and will move away.
7. Keep Your Cat Entertained
Cats are very good at entertaining themselves without you having to do much. Another method that got my cat off my bed and doing something else was to provide things for my cat to do at night.
Many cats sleep most of the day away and are active during dusk and dawn. This is their natural body clock which is different from ours.
If your cat is bored at night, it will want to enter your bedroom and come on the bed with you. To prevent this, lay out cat toys for your cat in other areas of the house. For cats that love to climb and jump, a multi-level cat tree or cat furniture can do wonders to keep them busy.
To boost this up a notch, engage in some vigorous play time with your cat before your bedtime. Make it chase a feather or a laser pointer for 30 minutes to let your cat expand all its energy.
Once your cat is tired from playing, it won’t be too fussy about where it is going to take a cat nap.
Do Not Hit Or Shout At Your Cat
One thing that you should never do when training your cat is to be abusive towards it. Please do not shout or hit your cat when you’re frustrated with your cat’s behavior.
Treating your cat in such a manner will erode whatever progress you have made and can even give some cats PTSD.
Always be gentle towards your cat and give it a lot of positive reinforcement when it does what you want. Make your cat form a positive association with getting off your bed when instructed.
Why Does Your Cat Like Sleeping On Your Bed?
Cats choose to sleep on our beds not because they want a bed to sleep on or to piss you off (some do). There are reasons why your cat likes being on your bed.
Your Cat Likes Your Smell
Cats are led by their noses and they communicate with the environment through smell. Your cat likes sleeping on your bed because it has your smell.
When a cat forms a bond with its owner, it likes having the owner’s smell on its body. This is why you find your cat rubbing its hand and body on you. It does this to exchange scents.
Do you know that your smell can have a calming effect on your cat?
My cat used to be a demonic monster whenever I have to leave him at the vet. But once I start putting a used piece of clothing of mine in his carrier, he is as calm as a cucumber.
Being near your smell comforts and calms your cat.
Your Cat Is Feeling Cold
Cats have a higher resting body temperature than humans which ranges between 100-102.5 F. This means that your cat needs more heat to keep warm.
If it is cold at night, your cat will want to gravitate to a place that is nice and warm like under your blanket.
Your Cat Is Still A Kitten
If you have recently adopted an orphaned kitten, you have to give it a lot of attention. The kitten will be crying for its mother as it is feeling afraid and anxious in its new environment.
It wants to be on the same bed as you for comfort and security. Furthermore, by sleeping on the bed with you, it will help to keep the kitten warm as cats only start to regulate their body temperature at 5 weeks of age.
Your kitten needs round-the-clock care and feeding to grow into a healthy adult cat.
Is It Cruel To Keep Your Cat Out Of The Bedroom?
I understand that it might make you feel heartless and uncaring to not allow your cat to sleep on your bed. It is even harder when your cat is meowing and scratching at your bedroom door wanting to get it.
It isn’t in your best interest to allow your cat on the bed when it affects your sleep or aggravates your allergy.
You will wake up feeling miserable and unhappy which will mess up your well-being in the long run.
It is only cruel to keep your cat out of the bedroom when it is still a kitten and needs to be fed and taken care of at night. You should never ignore the cries of a little kitten as they are very vulnerable at this phase its life.