What Was I Thinking?

The Feline Night Stalker


Shades of the late Darren McGavin! If you liked the ‘70s horror shows on TV, you knew him as Kolchak, crime reporter, in the series “The Night Stalker.”

It seems that I have a night stalker living with me. My kitty, Bonnie, had her 18th birthday in April and I’ve noticed some subtle changes in her behavior. Up until that time, Bonnie would sleep on my bed at night. She would quietly turn in circles for a few seconds until she found just the right spot; once settled, she would curl up and sleep until the alarm went off in the morning.  

This pattern changed several weeks ago. Bonnie now comes up on the bed, does her thing and goes to sleep. However, she now wakes up around 4:30 or 5:30 in the morning, meowing, stalking back and forth and jumping up and down on my bed; sometimes she’ll cross over my pillow, just missing my head. I can’t go back to sleep, so I am up with the roosters and chickens.  

Sign Up for E-News

This is a problem, considering my nocturnal oxygen therapy; I need a full night of oxygen, not just a few hours. Trying to break Bonnie’s new pattern, I began feeding her at 5:30 and going back to bed for a few hours. This is certainly not what my doctor ordered!

I finally brought Bonnie to her vet. Blood tests showed she has hyperthyroidism, for which she is now taking medication. When I informed him that I was feeding her at 5:30, he responded, “By doing that, you are rewarding her for doing something wrong.”

Yep, and she kept doing it day after day and I kept feeding her day after day. What a vicious cycle I had created.

When I next spoke to the vet, I explained that I was certainly feeling the lack of sleep and needed to find an answer to this problem. He then suggested I buy the lowest dosage of melatonin, cut the pill in half and give it to Bonnie an hour before my bedtime. Melatonin is an animal or plant hormone that regulates sleep and wakefulness. She had her first dose two nights ago and slept through the night and the next night, also. Tonight will be the third time and, hopefully, it will be another success.  

Of course, using melatonin is a short-term resolution. But it is our hope that using it will break Bonnie’s “bad habit” and she will revert to her previous ritual. We are in a holding pattern now: She eats well, drinks plenty of water, uses the litter box and doesn’t have any accidents. I will add that she loves men! After all, she was Art’s kitty. When one of my sons comes to visit,

Bonnie will jump on the sofa and sit very close to him—she doesn’t do that for me! I’m just her personal human caretaker.

I can’t help but think that her kitty brain is undergoing changes similar to humans as we age. Bonnie has been a wonderful pet: talkative, loyal and affectionate in her own way.  My wish is that she be comfortable and peacefully enjoy the remainder of her life until she crosses the Rainbow Bridge to reunite with brother, Clyde. 

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Momma's birds fled the nest

This year I was late in setting up my deck. Call it procrastination, muggy weather or whatever excuse, I finally got to it last week. With help from son, George, we set up the outdoor dining table and chairs; he methodically placed the flower boxes on the railing: “they have to be evenly spaced!”

We did have a concern: what about the nest the sweet little birds had built under the ...

Be-bop near the train stop

Last Friday was such a nice day we decided to head down to Tarrytown and take in some jazz in Pierson Park for the Friday Evening Concert Series. If you’re in the mood for it, a little jazz can be just the thing. Much of it is instrumental, so you don’t even have to sing along. Every time I see a rock band these days, they start the song, get to the chorus and then stick the mic out ...

Semantic revision of history

The latest fiasco I’ve read about is the renaming of the “Laura Ingalls Wilder Award” to the “Children’s Literature Legacy Award.” Why? Because the renowned author of Little House On The Prairie portrayed Native Americans (American Indians) in stereotypical language.

I must inject a personal experience here. A great friend of mine many years ago was Red ...

You’ll Get a Kick out of Musical Classic ‘Anything Goes’

I’ve loved Broadway musicals since I was smaller than a piano bench. That’s one reason I enjoy writing about local productions in this space. The more people who go to musicals, the happier it makes me.

I didn’t realize how old-fashioned about musicals I could be, though, until my wife Elyse and I at long last saw “Wicked.” It only took us 15 years to get there.

The Adventures of Superdog

I was always very impressed that my dog could bark on command and come when I called his name, until I read in the newspaper about a dog that saved his owner’s life by calling 9-1-1. Apparently, when his owner had a seizure, the dog pushed a speed-dial button for 9-1-1, barked into the receiver for help, and then opened the door when the responders arrived.

Honestly, though, it’s ...

Upcoming Events


Tue, July 24, 1:00 PM

Yorktown Heights



Sat, July 28, 6:30 PM

Weil Preserve, North Salem

Jazz in the Meadow with Bill Evans

Arts & Entertainment Other


Tue, July 31, 1:00 PM

Yorktown Heights