Ask Lyle - Dealing with a Loud Sibling
Ask Lyle is our weekly cat-to-cat advice column from Modern Cat (and ridiculously outspoken gentleman), Lyle. Submit your questions to email@example.com, and he will be happy to answer them. Don't forget to include a photo of the questioning cat so that we can post it with the advice!
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I am a quiet and shy cat who lives with a real loudmouth. Don't get me wrong, he is a really nice guy, but he has a bigger personality that I am used to. I don't want to start an issue between us, because we do have a good living situation going on, but there are just times when he won't calm down, nor will he stop meowing at the door and it drives a lot of us in the house crazy. I was wondering if you have any suggestions for ways to deal with him that wouldn't cause tension in the house. I don't like confrontation, but it's hard to sleep when I am already on alert most of the time when this dum-dum comes bolting through the room or meowing endlessly at the door (he calls it Singing the Song of His People, but I have never heard such an incessant song before...).
Help! I don't know how much longer I can take it without losing it!
Dear Peaceful Peanut,
Oh my gosh! My first question! I am already so excited here! Ok Lyle, it's time to focus up. Let's take a look at your problem. It sounds to me like the cat in question has a lot of personality and really wants to share it with the household. Can't blame him for that! Did you know that meowing is strictly a cat-to-human behavior, and that cats don't communicate with each other through meowing? It sounds like this guy's Momma needs to pick up on his distress and work to postively reinforce good (quiet) behaviours.
I wish I had a little more personal experience with this stuff, but even though I talk a whole lot, I am certain that the entire household (and building) enjoys it. For your situation, I think patience on all sides is key, and just an extra hug here and there to let this (obviously insecure) cat know that he is loved despite his big personality.
Keep me updated on his progress!
P.S. Did you know that I live with a cat named Penny? Coincidence!