Sometimes cats don’t know when you are coming home but they wait for hours behind the door

I will tell you why a lot of domestic cats give the impression that they know when their owner is coming home. They don’t know exactly when their owner is coming home. They might have a clue plus or minus an hour or two. That’s if their owner follows a routine. But if they don’t follow a routine their cat won’t know when they are coming home. And often what happens under these circumstances is that their cat waits near or behind the front door for hour after hour after hour. They might remain there all day with short breaks to go to the toilet and eat a bit of food. And they might howl because they are suffering from classic separation anxiety.

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The point is this: cat caregivers don’t really know what their cat gets up to when they are away from home. It will vary tremendously between cats. It depends upon the environment the owner creates for their cat and it depends upon the relationship between owner and cat. That’s common sense.

But in a normal, good relationship, I would argue that domestic cats don’t like being separated from their caregiver. Some will feel it more than others and when they do, they will howl and cry and mope around confused and lost. That is what is happening in the video on this page. It is a classic case of separation anxiety. This is how it looks and it is unpleasant. More cat owners should know about this.

This owner left their cat alone for 30 minutes and he had the foresight to place a video camera inside is home to see what was going on.

I find the video distressing, personally. My heart bleeds for this cat. He or she is saying that I’m confused, I am lost and I want my human companion back, please, as soon as possible. I don’t know why they are carrying around this cord or lead in their mouths. It might be a lead and it might be the case that the owner takes their cat outside on a lead from time to time for a walk.

And the cat is instinctively suggesting to their caregiver (who isn’t present) that she wants to go outside to join them. The cat knows that their owner is outside somewhere and she wants to go out to join them and therefore grabs hold of the lead because that is the only way she knows how to get outside.

That’s my interpretation and it might well be wrong but no matter how you interpret this video you must find it distressing if you are a concerned cat caregiver. The cat is stressed. Stress can lead to health issues. Often absent owners feed their cat dry cat food exclusively which can exacerbate health issues caused by stress e.g., cystitis.

I think every cat owner should put a video camera in their home which is motion activated and see what happens. You can buy cheap camera trap video cameras on Amazon for about $40 or the equivalent in UK pounds. It may well be instructional to the caregiver.

2 thoughts on “Sometimes cats don’t know when you are coming home but they wait for hours behind the door”

  1. Yes, my sadly departed young cat FESTUS waiting just outside my front door overnight when I couldn’t come hom due to being in hospital for a hernia op

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