While most cats can sleep all day, they seem to have an inbuilt alarm clock that has them waking bright as little buttons at the most unsociable hour. Match this with a fairly confident (even demanding) nature and you might find your cat is purring for her breakfast as the first flush of dawn hits the horizon. Get up and give her a feed, and then spend the next 12 hours watching her sleep.
As is often the explanation for cat behaviour, the hunting instinct has quite a lot to do with it. It’s all about food.
As hunters, they are hard-wired to be at their most alert at dawn and dusk. For many cat owners this isn’t much of a problem, but some cats will insist their owners wake up too, and they might do this by purring incessantly, swiping at your sleeping body, even sitting on your head. So, what can you do?
Remember, most cat behaviourial problems were probably caused (unintentionally, of course) by the owners, so changing a few of your behaviours is all that’s probably needed.
First of all, don’t give in. If your cat’s waking you because he wants his morning pat, don’t pat him. If he’s after breakfast, make him wait. Get up at your usual hour, ignoring his pleas for food, make your own breakfast, get dressed and then feed him when you are ready. This might help put an end to his unwelcome morning ritual. Try feeding him more at night, or give him a snack before bed, so he’s less likely to be hungry and demanding in the morning. Be careful not to overfeed him, though. You aren’t giving him extra food, just changing the times you give it to him.
You can also try a bit of aversion therapy. If your cat isn’t much of a cuddler, you can use this to your advantage. When he plops onto your bed in the morning, give him a big hug. Do this a few mornings in a row and he’ll learn that waking you means hugs for him, and he’ll stop.
Good luck, and sleep well!