Cats are extremely vocal pets, and it’s often a joy to be around them. However, sometimes it can be concerning when a cat is meowing incessantly. These situations can be annoying and worrying at the same time; especially if you can’t figure out what the cause is. So you’re likely wondering; why does my cat walk around meowing?
Your cat walks around meowing because they want attention. In some cases, cats will meow when they are hungry, in pain, upset, or are not feeling well. Restlessness caused by hyperthyroidism can also cause cats to walk around and meow.
The reasons above apply to most cats, however, every cat is an individual and you can never be sure. Below we’ll jump into 15 unique reasons why cats do this, and what you can do as a pet owner to help solve their problem.
Reasons Your Cat Is Walking Around Meowing
At this point, you’ve probably spent a lot of energy trying to figure out why your cat is meowing and can’t seem to stop. No worries, we’ve all been there, and sometimes figuring out what’s wrong isn’t always easy. Below are 13 of the most common reasons why cats walk around meowing along with some unique behaviors only some cats show.
1. Your Cat Is In Pain
One of the leading causes and cats walking around and meowing is pain. Think about it anytime your cats are playing around; whether it’s jumping off a high ledge or taking a run around the house, there’s always the risk for injury. Eventually, your cat will hurt itself.
However, the funny thing about cats is that you’re never entirely sure what they injured until you pick your cat up and begin to assess our weak spots. Because of this, your cat may approach you walking around meowing but not appeared injured or in pain.
What you can do is get a hold of your cat and gently begin feeling in different areas. Start with the Torso and then look around the leg areas looking for any noticeable scratches, bumps, or missing patches of fur.
Your cat starts to get sensitive when you touch a particular area; then, it is almost certain that your cat is walking around meowing because they are in pain. Once you figure out what areas are in pain, then you can start to look at treatment. In most cases, cats need a bit of rest when they are in pain, and the neon will eventually stop.
However, the meowing is at a varying level; then, you’ll want to consult your vet and see if the injury needs further treatment. Things such as Bone bruises, fractures, and internal damage will need to be diagnosed via x-ray. Another way you can tell your cat is in pain is to look for any noticeable limping or gingerly holding their paw as they walk around meowing.
2. Something Upset Your Cat
It’s almost impossible to read a cat’s mind. However, when they are upset it’s usually pretty clear. Cats do one of two things:
- Act out aggressively
- Become more vocal
So, if your cat is walking around meowing nonstop, they are likely upset with something. This can be anything from running out of food, needing a refill of the water bowl, and a lack of attention. Sometimes figuring out what’s upsetting your cat is the tricky part. It’s best to go down a list of potential reasons why your cat could be upset. Think about any recent changes, have a look at their living conditions, and see if you can put two and two together.
After attempting to fix a few of the possible issues, see if your cat’s behavior changes. If so, then you’ve nailed it! If not, you’ll need to get back to the drawing board. Cats are really reactive, so if you fix the problem, chances are the meowing will stop almost instantly.
3. Your Cat Is Hungry
Food is one of the leading contributors to a cat’s behavior. They are insanely happy when they have it, but equally insane when they don’t have it. If your cat’s food bowl is empty, they’ll start meowing at you; sometimes nonstop until filling it.
Leaving a cat’s food bowl empty is not intentional on our part as pet owners. However, it happens from time to time. That’s why it’s best to put your cat on a feeding schedule and find a way to make sure they always have access to food when they need it.
One helpful thing to do is to measure your cat’s weight and portion food out to be fed multiple times per day. You can either make sure to feed them manually in small amounts, or you can get an automatic feeder. Automatic feeders work really well though.
Most of them can work with apps too, and you can control when food is dispensed. If your cat eats all of its portioned food and wants more, you can set the feeder to provide more. It’s a helpful tool to keep your cat happy and comfortable throughout the process.
4. An Underlying Illness
Underlying illness can be a contributing factor to a cat meowing and walking around. This meow has a different tone to it though. Usually, there’s a bit of strain associated with it. You can hear that your cat is experiencing discomfort. Sometimes, a cat may meow to the point that they are straining their voice and fully exhausting themselves.
Some common underlying conditions include:
- Kidney Disease
No matter what the underlying issue is, this is not a good position to be in, and the only way to know for sure what’s going on is to take your cat to the vet. One health issue that commonly associates with excessive meowing is Hyperthyroidism which we’ll dive into later.
5. Your Cat Is Thirsty
Much like a desire for food, cats need plenty of water for their daily function. In fact, without water, a cat simply can’t survive. When your cat is thirsty and the water bowl is empty, expect to see them running up towards you meowing for more.
Much like an automatic feeder, a simple solution to this problem is to provide your cat with an automatic water dispenser. There are also fountain options that work quite well. They run at intervals so that your cat never becomes dehydrated.
There are also water dispensers that allow you to fill the entire container. As your cat drinks water, fresh water will flow from the container until the bowl is full. So, in a way, your cat never runs out of water and it’s less monitoring on your part.
6. Your Cat Is Greeting You
Cats love to greet their owners, especially when they first get home. The greeting doesn’t just stop there, however. Cats can become very excited and continue this greeting behavior for several minutes to several hours. This is particularly the case when they have been alone and away from social life for the majority of the day.
Instead of ignoring your cat when they do this, give them the extra attention they crave!
7. Wanting Attention
Sometimes a cat meows because they want attention. No, there are no health issues or any complex thing about it; it’s simply attention.
This kind of situation doesn’t affect every type of cat though. Instead, if you have a cat that is often bored and alone, along with no companion, this is likely to happen.
The easy solution is to give your cat the attention they want. Play with them, pet them, pick them up, and spend time keeping them active.
If you are the busy type and don’t have this kind of time to give your cat (20 – 30 minutes per day), then you need to invest in the following:
- A companion cat
- Automatic toys
If you can’t do those two things and you neglect your cat, then it’s probably a good idea to give it away to someone who can give them that kind of attention.
8. Mental Confusion In Older Cats
Certain mental conditions can develop with cats over time, especially as they get into their senior years. This can also contribute to them walking around meowing seemingly for no reason.
This can include things like cognitive disfunction and also be seen in the form of disorientation.
Sometimes you might find your cat just staring at a wall meowing, or in places they normally don’t go. Other times, the meowing is accompanied by frantic pacing, and a cat walking around in circles. Sudden shifts in mood are often associated with this too.
Your cat could show some signs of sluggish responses, have a lack of appetite, have schizophrenia, and even start using the litter in random locations without a set pattern. Anxiety and depression also accompany your cat’s behaviors too.
To really know for sure if your older cat has a mental issue, they’ll need testing.
Hyperthyroidism occurs in older cats; usually eight years or more. It’s an overproduction of thyroid hormones, and this leads to an increased metabolic rate. This means your cat will be full of meowing energy to the point it won’t stop. This leads to cats pacing around rather frantically and meowing along with it.
Because of your cat’s thyroid location (near the larynx), the meow your cat gives off will have a unique tone to it. There will also be things like frequent panting and crying too. Your cat will not only be hyper, but they’ll show an extreme level of discomfort too.
When a cat is dealing with this condition you’re likely to see the following:
- Rapid weight loss
- Bigger appetite
- Frequent urination
Now, figuring out if your cat has hyperthyroidism isn’t as simple as looking at these symptoms. It requires a special blood test It’s a single test that measures your cat’s T3 or T4 concentration. If those levels are elevated, then you’ll know your cat has a problem.
10. Your Cat Feels Sick
Your cat could be feeling sick and want to make sure you know. When a cat is sick the only way they really communicate that is through their meow. Things like an upset stomach, nasal discharge from a cold, and more are all ways cats can be sick.
Think about any changes in diet your cat may have recently had. Perhaps the new food is not working well with them, or maybe they are too cold (more on this later).
11. Your Cat Is In Heat
Cats that are in heat will go through a period of excessive meowing. Sometimes the meowing will be to other cats outside the home that they can sense. That meow is their way of calling out to them.
If your cat is in heat, there are not too many options you have to stop the meowing other than to get them neutered or spayed.
12. The Temperature Is Bothering Your Cat
Cats are very sensitive to temperature changes; especially extreme ones. The temperature you set in the home is important. Set it too hot and your cat will be in a constant state of agitation. Make it too cold and your cat will walk around shivering hoping it’ll warm up.
You can tell if your cat has issues with the temperature just based on the body language in combination with the meow. They’ll likely try to find warm areas and materials like blankets and pillows. If it’s too hot, expect the water bowl to empty frequently (this can also cause meows too if it is constantly empty!).
13. Communicating With Other Cats
Sometimes cats walk around meowing because they are communicating with other cats. for the most part, this is to the other cats in your home if you have them. Listen carefully, chances are the other cats are communicating back much the same way.
However, if you notice your cat is running up to the window to meow, or perhaps the door, then it can sense other cats in the area.
In that case, this can be a bit problematic.
One solution is to put deterrents around the home. This can be something simple like sprayer vinegar or citrus smells around the perimeter. That can help keep the other cats away as those scents are normally ones they dislike.
14. Time Of Day
Cats are naturally more active at night. Because of this, you can expect to hear them roaming the home late at night meowing. This doesn’t mean anything is wrong most of the time; it’s just something cats do. Still, if you’re looking for a specific reason it can be any of the following:
- Your cat is aging
- They feel boxed in
- Your cat is understimulated
Thankfully there are some things you can do to stop this. The first is making sure to really tire your cat out during the day hours. Keep them active, give them lots of playtime, that sort of thing, and then they’ll be good and ready to sleep more during the night.
You can also provide them with non-noisy toys and gadgets so that you’re not hearing too much noise. Keeping your cat preoccupied and helping them rid themself of the “zoomies” is key.