Your Cats Social Interaction
Never force your cat to interact. Let kitty set the pace of how much he wants to engage. Dont insist on holding or petting your cat if he doesnt want it. If he doesnt mind being held, always put him down before he starts to struggle. Keep the experience positive. You can give him incentives to be more sociable, such as offering a treat or playtime, but always let it be his choice of whether to accept or decline.
Putting Love In This Hate
Ok, so your cat doesn’t like getting inside their carrier. But before you label your cat stubborn, consider for a moment that the only time you pull the carrier out of storage is when you’re heading to the vet’s office.
And chances are those visits are not for routine wellness care , but for when they are “off” or sick.
It’s hard to imagine any of us wanting to get inside of our cars if getting behind the wheel every time meant a trip to the dentist!
…that quick “carrier to car ride to vet visit” is typically when theyre already not feeling well
So it’s really not surprising they don’t like their carrier, and that your carrier dance usually involves a struggle with your cat being placed in facing backwards, and you with scratches on both arms. Sound familiar?
What Are The Symptoms Of Anxiety In Cats
There are a number of different ways that anxiety can manifest, and symptoms may not always be obvious. In general, you should watch out for any changes in behavior, particularly following any changes in your cats environment.
Common cat anxiety symptoms
Physical signs of anxiety, such as holding their tail tight against their body, holding their ears back and hair standing up
Anxiety can also trigger a number of medical conditions, particularly Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease and Upper Respiratory Infections , so you may also notice related symptoms, such as difficulty urinating and increased frequency of urination for FLUTD, and sneezing, congestion and discharge for URIs.
If your cat frequently suffers from recurrent medical issues, you and your veterinarian should consider the possibility that they are being caused by underlying anxiety.
Also Check: Is Baking Soda Bad For Cats
Try Not To Handle Them If Theyre Not Keen
While many cats like to be stroked for a long period of time, others are happier to enjoy their own company. Some cats might be quick to tell you that theyre unhappy while others are more subtle in their behaviour. Pay attention to their body language and always make sure they have the freedom to move away from you when they wish.
How To Calm An Anxious Cat
If youre worried about your anxious cat, you should first make an appointment with your veterinarian to rule out possible illnesses and diseases that could be contributing to his symptoms. Following that, youll need to try to get to the bottom of what is causing your cats anxiety. From there, you can tailor your treatment plan to suit your cats specific needs.
You May Like: Worlds Biggest House Cat Breed
What Are The Signs Of Stress In A Cat
There are numerous cat stress signs to spot although theyre not always obvious. Signs of stressed cats can include:
- becoming more withdrawn or hiding more than usual
- becoming less tolerant of people
- hesitating or becoming reluctant to use the litter tray, go through the cat flap or sit on your lap
- eating or drinking less
Keeping Cat Anxiety At Bay
If you determine that your cat is suffering from anxiety, there are several options available. However, finding the right one for your cat might take some trial and error. Both Delgado and Krieger stress that every cat is different, and a solution that works for one kitty might not work for another.
Delgado adds that because many cat calming products are available without prescription from a veterinarian, owners cant expect them to work miracles. Most products that are available over the counter dont offer extreme results, but some may have a calming effect, she says.
Read Also: Why Are Black And White Cats Unpopular
How Do You Relieve A Stressed Cat Or Kitten
It’s not always easy to know how to relieve your cat or kitten that turns out to be stressed. Once your vet has confirmed that it is in fact stress and not an underlying health problem, then it’s up to you to identify the possible causes of the stress.
Sometimes the cause of the stress is obvious, such as a change of home or a new arrival in the family. However, sometimes it can be much harder to find out. It could be down to boredom or perhaps a change in their food which they don’t agree with, even if they’ve accepted many dietary changes beforehand.
Once the origin of the stress has been identified, you can put measures in place to cancel out the cause, or perhaps get treatment from your vet. It could also be worth considering getting dietary supplements or calming pheromones. In worst case scenarios, medical treatment could also be considered.
To reassure a stressed cat, it is important to give them attention. You could, for example, play for longer with them, make new places of rest available , adapt their diet
Most importantly, try not to lose your temper with them if they make a mistake linked to stress. This could exacerbate the situation.
Cat Calming Pheromone Diffusers
If you like the idea of treating your cats anxiety with pheromones, but you know that wearing anything would stress your cat out, try pheromone diffusers for cats. Cat calming diffusers like the Feliway plug-in diffuser can help with general anxiety in cats by emitting a synthetic version of the feline facial pheromones.
Cat calming diffusers like the Feliway MultiCat diffuser plug-ins are specifically made to help calm multi-cat households and promote harmony amongst cats. These diffusers use a synthetic version of the pheromone given off by mother cats while nursing kittens.
Krieger says that she strongly prefers diffusers to collars. If a cat doesnt like a collar, she cant get away from it. If she doesnt like the pheromones from a diffuser, she can walk into another room. So, if theyre helpful, you get the benefits without causing any undue stress, and if theyre not, you dont cause any harm. she explains.
Don’t Miss: Why Do Cats Scratch Around Food
How Do You Calm A Stressed Cat
If you see that your cat is getting stressed then make sure that it has a quiet, safe place to go indoors or in the garden.Control your surroundings
Make Moving Day Less Stressful
On the day of the move, place your cat into an empty room and close the door. Leave food, bedding, a litter tray, and a piece of furniture under which he can hide. Place the cat carrier in the room with its door open. Make sure your movers know the door to the room must remain closed to prevent your pet from running away. This not only keeps your pet safe, but it keeps him away from big boxes and strangers that can leave him feeling uneasy.
Take the same type of approach when you arrive at your new home. If you can, try to unload one room first. You can place your cat here to rest and recover from the journey while you sort out the rest of the house. At the very least, you can put your cat in a bathroom with the door shut. Just make sure you have a litter box, water, food, and a comfy cat bed to help your cat feel less stressed by all the noise outside the closed door.
Read Also: Diy Cat Pee Deterrent
Create A Chill Out Zone
Just as teens retreat to their bedrooms, and adults to their homes, cats need a place they know is theirs, where they are safe, calm and away from the daily feline grind.
Set aside a corner in your home and place a few of your cats favourite toys, blankets and some climbing equipment. Make sure this area is away from anything too loud for the cat, such as the TV, stereo, fridge or washing machine. Remember, nobody likes to feel trapped, especially cats, so make sure they can access this area whenever they need to.
When Do Cats Get Stressed
One of the most common forms of cat anxiety is separation anxiety, in which your cat becomes anxious and stressed when you leave their sight or when they are left home alone. This is especially prevalent among cats with a history of abandonment or who have been rehomed or passed from owner to owner, according to PetMD.
You May Like: Blue Buffalo Flaked Cat Food
Paws & Pals Pet Natural Calming Spray Cologne
The Paws & Pals Pet Natural Calming Spray Cologne is a water-based cat relaxing spray that eases your pets anxiety and worries. It is made with natural, healthy, and locally-sourced ingredients, including chamomile, lavender, aloe vera, and more.
Each bottle of this cat calming spray comes in a 12-oz packaging and with a long-lasting, fresh, and aromatic scent that most cats and cat owners alike adore. Not only will these bottles help you see your cat calm, relaxed, and at its best state, but these also help in keeping your surroundings smelling fresh.
The safe and non-toxic formula of this product is free of paraben, sulfate, phosphate, and synthetic dyes or perfumes. If you see your cat exhibiting signs of stress, whether at home or on the go, then this cat calming product is one of the best sprays that you can use.
How to Use the Paws & Pals Pet Natural Calming Spray Cologne
For best results, spray a Paws & Pals Pet Spray Cologne on the cats beddings or in the air. Pausing for a short time in between sprays will allow the product to be absorbed. Make sure to avoid spraying directly on cats to avoid allergies or irritations.
Paws & Pals Pet Natural Calming Spray Cologne Key Features:
Create A Safe And Cozy Space For Them
Something else you can do to calm your cat down is to create a safe and cozy environment for them. This will include their normal and personal resting area, having the curtains drawn, no hectic movements or loud sounds and maybe some soothing music. You should also remember that cats can sense our stress, so it’s very important that we are also calm and near them.
This should be a safe space they can come to when they need to relax or when they’re not feeling well. This is why you should avoid allowing other pets into this area. Remember that each pet will need their own personal space where they can go to be alone or to simply relax, this can be your bedroom, an area in the living room, etc.
Read Also: Blue Buffalo Kitten Food Ingredients
Cat Open Mouth When Stressed
Cat opens his mouth when stressed because he is facing trouble breathing.
An owner may find it difficult to see a stressed cat open its mouth and breathe. It might be induced by stress or changes in the surroundings, such as relocating or having loud children visit.
Suppose the problem is with the carrier or the automobile. In that case, there are things you can do ahead of time to lessen the possibility of panting, such as exposing the cat to the carrier before beginning a journey or applying a synthetic pheromone spray like Feliway or Comfort Zone before travelling or relocating.
Cat Calming Products To Help Ease Cat Anxiety
Reviewed for accuracy on August 29, 2018 by Katie Grzyb, DVM
Humans are not the only ones that deal with anxiety issues cats can suffer from anxiety, too. As a pet owner, keeping your cats anxiety under control is important for establishing and maintaining a positive pet and human relationship.
There are many reasons a cat may experience anxiety, but there are also many calming products that pet owners can try to help manage their cats anxiety.
Also Check: Normal Cat Vitals
Can I Give My Cat A Sedative Or Antianxiety Medication To Decrease This Stress
Sedatives are prescription medications that should only be administered to healthy animals. If your cats veterinary appointment is for a routine wellness examination, your veterinarian may prescribe a sedative or antianxiety medication if your cats stress is severe. Since these drugs may have side effects, NEVER administer a sedative if you have ANY concerns about the cats present state of health – even if your veterinarian has provided you with a sedative for routine wellness visits in the past.
Buprenorphine , gabapentin and alprazolam are examples of medications that have recently begun to be used to reduce the anxiety associated with car travel or veterinary visits. If one of these medications is appropriate for your cats situation, your veterinarian will prescribe it.
How To Minimize Your Cat’s Stress When Moving
Cats are territorial animals, and changes in their home can cause stress. Whether you’re moving with your cat across the country or moving nearby with lots of renovations, cats really need to have some semblance of control over their surroundings. When that changes, they get stressed out.
Moving homes can be challenging for cats. They become quite attached to their environment. Each room and each piece of furniture is marked with their scent as a way to establish their territory. Just moving furniture around, redecorating, or adding new pieces can stress some cats because you’re changing the territory she knows so well. This is even more stressful when you’re changing environments entirely and can result in scratching, urine spraying, and other stress-related behaviors.
Also Check: Can A Cat’s Broken Tail Heal On Its Own
Some Of The Ways To Minimize Separation Anxiety In Cats Are As Follows:
- Leave the radio or TV on a station that is often on when youre there
- Keep arrivals and departures low key
- Create a nook, safe haven, or refuge for your cat that is their safe space
- Provide plenty of toys and/or puzzles for playtime while you are gone
- Channel prey instincts by hiding food in toys that make them work for it
- Start with shorter absences first
- Provide a perch or catio so that your cat can see their favorite views
- Consider a room diffuser or pheromones to provide a calming scent for your cat
- Remove departure cues put your keys in your pocket a few minutes before leaving)
- Provide plenty of cuddles and playtime once home
- For more serious cases, consider having a sitter coming for 1-2 play sessions during absences
We cannot emphasize enough the importance of checking with your veterinarian when you see any change in your cats behavior before you chalk it up to separation anxiety, as early treatment of illnesses is crucial to cat wellness. For example, some cats go outside the litter box when they have urinary tract infections.
In extreme cases, medication may be an option, but your vet will usually leave that as a final alternative. As the ASPCA notes: “Sometimes for cats, veterinarians will advise using pheromones or calming treats before prescribing medication. Always consult with your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist before giving your dog or cat any type of medication or supplement for a behavior problem.”
Some Cats Seem Especially Prone To Getting Stressed And It Can Be Challenging To Find The Cause
Cats get stressed much as we do. Indoor-only kitties, and those living in multi-cat households, are especially prone to stress, which can lead to problematic behaviors and even health issues. This article takes a look at what can cause your cat to get stressed out, how it can affect her behavior and health, and six ways to help ease her emotions.
Recommended Reading: How Much Should A Cat Eat Daily
Tips To Instantly Calm Any Cat
There are a few techniques, which arent rocket-science but will enable you to calm almost any cat, in almost any situation.
It doesnt matter what breed they are or if they have a particularly aggressive personality. The tips below just work.
Whatever the reason, you want your cat to trust you. The tricks and tips I describe below will send signals to your cat that tell it you are not a threat.
You will be showing it that you mean it no harm. Your cat should relax a little and you should see the results of this immediately.
How Do I Get My Kitten To Behave
Five Training Tips for New Kitten Owners
Also Check: Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Cat Food
Choose A Suitable Carrier
Make sure your carrier is warm, comfortable and large enough for your cat to stand up and turn around. Plastic carriers are ideal for easy cleaning if you fear there may be mess and top and front opening carriers allow the cat to be carefully lifted in and out. If you think your cat would feel happier sitting in the base whilst being examined that will be fine, just let your vet know.
Changes In Eating Habits
Okay, so this one can be closely linked to a human trait. When you are stressed, do you ease your frustration by overindulging yourself with food, or are you one that avoids food as a way to handle your stress? Your cat is the same as you when it comes to managing their stress in this aspect. A cat can choose to overeat or undereat as a means to cope, and as the person who is filling their food bowl daily, you will be able to see this sign your cat is stressed loud and clear.
Recommended Reading: Why Do Cats Squint Their Eyes