So, I'm trying to construct a sentence along the lines of "After I do this action, I do that action," but I'm having the absolute hardest time figuring out what syntax and verb conjugations to use. Specifically, I'm trying to say "After I wake up, I feed my cat". Could I get some assistance?

3 Answers 3


That depends on context.

  • (After/Once) I wake up, I feed my cat.


  • (The order/sequence is) after I wake up, I feed my cat.
    or (Only) after I wake up, I feed my cat.


  • (After) I wake up, (then) I feed my cat.



△ 起きると、猫にえさをやる。

is unnatural, especially for talking about your own actions.

Thanks to @oals!


I feel that the forms in David's answer are a bit uncommon. I'd just use a plain 〜たら:


When I wake up in the morning, I feed my cat.


You have several possibilites to do this. The most used are:

  1. Verb + と + action afterwards. This is a good choice, if you want to list many subsequent events. The verb must be in the present tense. If you still want to speak about the past, make the part after と in past tense.
  2. Verb + [後]{あと}で + action afterwards. The focus here is on the previous event being finished, so the verb has to be in the past tense.
  3. te-Verb + から + action afterwards. Similar to 5時から, the から means "since" here. It is preferably to use this, instead of 後で, if you want to emphasize the since-ness.

Applying this on your example sentence, you'd get:

[明日]{あした}、[起]{お}きると[猫]{ねこ}に[餌]{えさ}をやる, I added tomorrow here

[昨日]{きのう}、起きた後で猫に餌をやった, talking about yesterday here.

起きてから猫に餌をやっている, ever since waking up, you are feeding the cat. Lucky cat ^^

  • Would be really helpful if you could explain the difference between these three forms please. Commented Aug 28, 2015 at 15:26
  • 3
    "you can't use this[と], if you are talking about the past" >> But you can say 昨日、目が覚めると、部屋に猫がいた。(明日起きると猫を飼う sounds unnatural, by the way)
    – chocolate
    Commented Aug 29, 2015 at 0:34
  • 1
    As choco stated, 飼う is not the right verb here ("When I wake up I have/own a cat"?). To feed in this context is (猫に)餌をやる.
    – naruto
    Commented Aug 29, 2015 at 10:19
  • Ah, ok. I even double-checked this with a dictionary (dictionary.goo.ne.jp/leaf/jn2/37320/m0u/%E9%A3%BC%E3%81%86), where they define 飼う as 動物に食べ物・水を与える。 But I agree that it might get confused with "have/own a cat". Commented Aug 29, 2015 at 10:28
  • 3
    Ah, that usage shoud be arcaic, and no one says 馬に水を飼う today. I didn't even know that definition. 徒然草 was written 700 years ago.
    – naruto
    Commented Aug 29, 2015 at 10:47

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