You’re awakened from a peaceful slumber by the sound of racing paws and perhaps items falling off of shelves… Your cat has the “zoomies” again, and while the behavior is sometimes amusing, it can get a bit annoying if you’re losing sleep. So what are the zoomies, and what can you do about it?
Technically called “frenetic random activity periods”, the zoomies are usually the result of a sudden burst of energy. Because you’re gone during the day, your kitty might spend most of that time bored and sleeping. Then they experience the inevitable burst of energy late at night.
This behavior is almost always normal, even if it is annoying. But because the zoomies can occasionally signal hyperthyroidism or other medical disorders, schedule an appointment with us if the zoomies have begun suddenly or are accompanied by other unusual behavior changes.
Zoomies can also be a cat’s way of calming their anxiety. Some cats zoom after a bath, for example, or after visiting a litter box that they have deemed too dirty. They might also zoom in response to loud noises or visitors that give them anxiety.
Otherwise, the zoomies are generally just a random burst of energy in a cat that spent too much time lounging during the day. Encouraging your pet to exercise a bit more in the daytime can sometimes calm the nighttime zoomies. Provide new toys or even one of the new devices that makes your cat work to get a treat.
Some pheromone products on the market are aimed at calming wild kitties, and are available in sprays, diffusers, and collars that they wear. We have found that Feliway products work great for the cats in our practice.
And if your pet’s nocturnal sprints are significantly disrupting your sleep or wrecking the house, confining them to a smaller area might at least bring peace and quiet while protecting your valuables.
As for the daytime dashes, try to keep your smartphone handy. Zoomies can be hilariously entertaining, and make for fun social media posts.
Give us a call if you need to discuss your cat’s behavior, and we can help you identify solutions that will work for you.