DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME AND FEEDING YOUR CAT
Every year on the second Sunday of March most Americans and Canadians set their clocks forward one hour. On the first Sunday of November, they set their clocks back one hour. This is called daylight saving time. Note that it is Daylight Saving without an ‘s’!
It was created to conserve energy; giving people an extra hour to enjoy daylight in the evening. For some, daylight saving time can disrupt sleep schedules, leaving people feeling groggy and tired. It also causes other issues as we try to adjust our schedule to the changes. With a few extra alarms and a cup of coffee most of us adjust to daylight saving time pretty quickly.
In a similar manner our cats are also affected. They rely heavily on daylight to determine time and they often adjust their routines to the sunlight. It’s no coincidence that many cats become less active during the winter when there is the least amount of sunlight. The time your pet wakes up to go to the litter box, eat dinner, exercise, nap and sleep are all dependent on the amount of daylight. Cats can’t read the time on a clock, so when we change our clocks forward or back an hour, they don’t notice. What they do notice is the change in their schedule and routine.
At the start and end of daylight saving time, their meal times especially are disrupted and this may become confusing since they feel most comfortable with a predictable routine.
That being the case there are a couple of options that will help your kitty adjust to daylight saving time.
One would be to begin a few weeks before the change to start feeding the cat 5 or so minutes earlier every day. By the time the actual day of change comes your pet will acclimated to the new schedule.
An easier option would be to simply feed your pet according to the new time an hour earlier. So if normal feeding time is 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. then just feed your cat at 6:00 a.m. and 6: p.m. instead. Your pet won’t be the wiser and it will be easier than remembering to do it five minutes earlier on a daily basis for a few weeks.
Then in the Fall you can go back to 7:00.