This article may include affiliate links. If you make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.
As we know, all cats are different, and how much they meow varies from cat to cat – some don’t make much noise at all, while some just love to chat. Similarly, some pet parents love ‘chatty’ cats, while some prefer a quieter kitty. Excessive meowing can mean different things to different pet parents, so it’s important to know whether your cat is just naturally talkative or if there is something wrong with her.
What Causes Excessive Meowing?
Some breeds are known to be exceptionally talkative, with Siamese/Oriental cats being the most well-known, but Sphynx cats and Devon and Cornish Rex cats are also chatty cats. Of course, it doesn’t just depend on the breed, some cats are just naturally talkative!
If your cat starts meowing excessively and it’s not usually in her nature to, the first thing to rule out is illness – is she trying to communicate that she’s in pain or that something is wrong? Once you’ve ruled out potential health issues with your vet, then it could be one of the following:
- Saying hello – Yes, that’s right, she might just be pleased to see you! If your cat always starts meowing a lot when she sees you, take it as a compliment – you’re her human and she appreciates you.
- Attention seeking – Some cats enjoy social contact more than others, and your cat will have learned that whenever she meows she gets attention. It might be that she wants to play because she’s bored, or she just wants a kitty cuddle.
- Asking for food – You may have a cat that always seems to want food, a trait that is often observed in ex-strays, so be careful not to overfeed her. This type of excessive meowing can often be heard at 5am, accompanied by a paw to the face.
- Stress – If you’ve noticed an increase in how often your cat meows, it could be down to stress. Have there been any changes in your cat’s routine or the household causing her to stress out? It could also be anxiety at being left alone.
- Getting older – Senior cats often suffer from deterioration in their hearing, which means that they can’t always hear themselves properly and their meowing can become loud and over bearing. There’s also the possibility of dementia, so the meowing could be caused by confusion.
- Wanting to mate – A female cat in heat will be very vocal to attract a male cat, and in fact this is a very specific type of meowing that’s more like a yowl. It’s essential to get your female cat spayed as soon as your vet recommends it.
How to Deal with Excessive Meowing
The first thing to do if you’re faced with excessive meowing is to figure out the cause, as well as ensuring that you and your cat have a regular routine of feeding and playtime. If there’s a health problem, stress or boredom behind excessive meowing, then you can deal with the root cause, which should resolve it.
Once you’ve ruled out any health issues for your cat, you need to decide whether it’s actually a problem for you. If her excessive meowing is something that you want to reduce, you can, but it’s important not to punish her for meowing because that won’t work. Instead, use positive reinforcement by rewarding her when she’s quiet, with a treat, praise or even with clicker training. How do you react to the excessive meowing? Just ignore it. Once she realises that she’s not getting any attention from it, she’ll soon stop.
How talkative are the cats in your household? Do you have a ‘chatty’ cat that meows excessively?
Maxwell, Faraday & Allie says
Maxwell: *points to Faraday* EXCESSIVE MEOWER, RIGHT THERE. Totally attention seeking too. *eyeroll*
Tracy Williams says
My cat meows usually when she wants to play or feel hungry. I’m glad to read such an amazing article and will recommend friends too.
Rachel Sheppard says
I have also seen it as a symptom that comes along with hyperthryoidism. Great article!
Elle @ Erratic Project Junkie says
Despite being a Siamese mix, Picabo has always been the least chatty of our feline trio. When he started to get a little slimmer (he needed to lose a little weight) and started talking up a storm, I got suspicious. Turns out, he has hyperthyroidism. We’ve got him some meds, his weight is stabilized at a healthy level and he’s returned to his typically quiet self. He was definitely trying to tell us to pay attention. I’m glad we did. Vet said we caught it a lot earlier than most, which made his condition much easier to control.
Rosa @ Cat Lady Confidential says
Mister loves for me to play with him. So when he starts meowing usually he’s seeking attention and wants me to play with him.
Travel Animal Doctor says
This is a wonderful article. I will definitely be forwarding this on to my friend who would enjoy reading about reasons why her cat is “talkative”.
Christine & Riley says
Thank goodness Suzi or Ninja don’t meow a lot… but I love it when Ninja is taking a nap, I’ll walk over to her and pet her and she always will meow at me, it’s really sweet 🙂
The Island Cats says
I’ve been meowing a little more lately. I don’t know why…I just like to hear me sing! The mom thinks it’s because I’m getting a little older and am looking for a little more attention. ~Wally
I have one talkative cat and one very quiet cat. Normally, I don’t have too much trouble determining what they are talking about. Cinco and Manna are quite expressive! It does amuse me when Manna has conversations with me. 🙂
When The Cat Is Away says
Thank you again for a thoughtful and informative post, I really enjoy them! My cats are – so far, they’ve only been here for 2 weeks – only meowing when they want to play.
Ellen Pilch says
Very interesting. My cats are pretty quiet, but Penny always has a lot to talk about with her Dad, not me 🙁
The Swiss Cats says
Zorro is a real chatterbox : he says hello, asks for attention, asks for food, looks for me for playtime, … Mum and Dad ask him to shut up only when he comes and says hello at 5 AM in the bedroom. Purrs, Pixie
Kitties Blue says
Mauricio is a non-stop chatter when he is awake. It is always a bid for attention. He thinks he should be catered to 24/7. If I have been giving him attention for a half hour and stop, he immediately starts up again with his demands. His sister Misty May is also a chatterbox but not quite to the same extent. Sometimes he can drive me downright crazy, but after 10 years I am pretty much accustomed to it. Fiona gets very demanding when she wants out on the catio or back in again, and this can come at three minute intervals. Lisbeth very rarely says anything at all, and I wish she would talk more. But I know they each have their own unique personality. Thanks for a good post.
Thankfully, they only meow when they are hungry or the one make lots of noise when he is play hunting.
The Daily Pip says
We have one very chatty cat and another not so chatty cat. They balance each other out. LOL
Binga meows a LOT, and it’s gotten louder and more frequent – next time she goes to the vet (which will be soon), my human is going to ask about it.