Treatment Of Stress In Cats
Once medical causes for the behavior are ruled out, treatment of stress in cats relies partly on trying to determine its source. Below are some general ways to combat feline stress in your home.
Some cats need anti-anxiety medicine to help them break the stress cycle. These medications do have potential side effects and must be carefully dosed. Your veterinarian can help you determine whether one is necessary for your cat and, if so, prescribe it. Never give your cat any medicine without your veterinarian’s approval. These medications work best when used for a short period of time in conjunction with the modifications described above.
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Trained Cats Who Begin To Have Accidents Outside Of The Litter Box May Be Experiencing Stress
“When a cat stops using the litter box or is inconsistent about using the litter box, it can be a sign that your cat is experiencing stress,” Arndt told Insider.
Instead of punishing your cat for having an accident, Arndt suggested making an appointment with your veterinarian to rule out any medical problems.
You may also want to try increasing the number of litter boxes in your home or changing their location, since some cats may be uncomfortable sharing a litter box with another cat or using a box placed in a loud area.
Can You Hear Me Meow
If your cat is stressed, they will likely announce their frustrations by becoming increasingly vocal. This is their way of telling you, hey, human, something is not okay in their language. Keep watch for this, and this sign of stress might be clearer to spot should your cat naturally be soft-spoken. , then this sign might be naturally dismissed by you as their owner.)
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Considering Changes In The Environment
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.
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Stress In Pets: What Causes It
Whilemajor life changes, such as moving to a new house or introducing a new fur baby into the household, can be stressful, this isnt always the case. Often, its something a lot more minor that sets off an anxiety attack.
There is no single cause for a pets stress or anxiety. All animals, like people, are unique and can be disturbed by a variety of things. To assist your cat or dog cope with anxiety, start by asking yourself, Whats different?
An unsettling or unhealthy habit can induce stress in cats and dogs. Pets require a lot of interaction, exercise, and mental stimulation, and if they dont receive enough, anxiety can develop.
Cats and dogs are creatures of habit, much like people. If that habit is disturbed, such as by a family vacation or special occasions like Christmas, your pet may feel agitated. Remember that they may not be aware of what is going on around them.
Although we consider our four-legged companions to be family, we may be the source of worry for them while they may not comprehend our holiday customs, they learn to read our behavior in their manner.
You are the most important person to them as a human. If youre upset or anxious, your pet may have picked up on it and been uncomfortable as a result.
If Your Normally Social Cat Has Begun Hiding Beneath Furniture Or Blankets They Could Be Stressed Out
“Cats are evasive by nature and love to find places to curl up for long cat naps,” said Arndt. “But if your cat is suddenly hiding, it can be a sign that your cat is experiencing stress.”
Arndt advised that providing perches or cat trees can help, as cats often feel more comfortable when they are up high. Allowing your cat to have a safe room in your house where they can go to relax is also a good idea.
“Consider using a baby gate and cutting a small hole in the bottom, just large enough for your cat,” said Arndt. “This lets your cat escape stressors, such as a new pet that has just been brought into the home.”
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How To Know If Your Pet Cat Is Stressed Out During Lockdown
The pandemic lockdown has been stressing out many people, and feline pets are not excused. This home pet is very sensitive to what goes on around them. Most especially now that things are not the same anymore, they just feel it. Here is a post that will help you spot whether your cat is in constant worry by providing subtle signs of stress. Read on!
Signs Of Separation Anxiety In Cats And What To Do About Them
Weve all seen the memes since this COVID-19 pandemic started about dogs who have had enough of you walking them, thank you very much. And in turn, the cat memes are all about them wondering when we are going back to work and giving them their much needed personal space back. We get it. Dogs tend to be goofy and friendly while cats are, ahem, a bit more discerning about their company. The truth is, though, cats have plenty of different personality types, and many of them do experience separation anxiety. This is particularly true of cats who were orphaned. And with many of you going back to work if you havent gone back already, its a good idea to know the signs of separation anxiety in cats.
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Signs Of Stress In Cats
Cats show stress in many ways, and it often comes down to observing changes in normal behavior to determine whether yours might be stressed. The catch is that many of these signs can also indicate various medical conditions, so it can sometimes be tricky to sort things out. If you notice any change in behavior in your cat, it’s best to consult a veterinarian to rule out medical causes before settling on stress as the diagnosis. Here are some common signs of stress in cats:
- Inappropriate elimination
- Hiding or extra clinginess
- Over-grooming, sometimes to the point of creating bald spots, often focusing on the legs or belly
Why Are Some Cats More Prone To Developing Chronic Stress Than Others
The ability of the individual to cope with challenges depends on both genetic and environmental factors. The development of the physiological systems involved in the stress response starts before a kitten is even born and if the mother is stressed during pregnancy or receives poor nutrition then her litter may be more prone to developing stress, and the non-adaptive coping strategies that form the basis of many of the common behaviour problems.
A lack of early socialization and opportunities to experience the sights, sounds and smells of a typical domestic home environment may also result in life being very challenging later on.
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Is Your Cat Stressed Out
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When I talk to some people about how stress affects their cats, I sometimes get very strange looks. Back in 1982 when I first started my cat behavior consulting business, the idea of stress in cats was pretty much unheard of. I even remember being laughed at when my first book came out in 1990. Cats experiencing stress? What nonsense! These days, the veterinary world is doing more and more to educate clients about stress in cats and veterinarians work hard to minimize stress in the clinic setting. For some cat parents though, even with more information available about how stress affects cats, the idea their pampered pet could have anything to feel stressed about is a ridiculous one. Is it really ridiculous? Absolutely not. All animals are capable of being stressed and it can be potentially dangerous so its important to learn the signs and evaluate your cats situation to see if theres anything that can be done to keep stress levels to a minimum.
Kitty Is Extra Aggressive
If your cat is aggressive for no known reason, anxiety might be behind kitty’s behavior. “A well-behaved pet wouldnât go repeatedly berserk on you without a solid motive, so try to discover the root of the problem and fix it for them,” iHeart Cats advised on its website. What’s more, “boredom can result inanxiety for a cat that needs attention, and taking out their frustrations on your belongings is one way they can express their discontent to you.”
Helping Your Stressed Cat
The first thing you need to know in order to help your anxious cat is that you should never punish or scold them for their anxious behavior. This will only increase negative associations and fear and make things worse instead of better. The goal should be to help them feel safe and relaxed in their surroundings.
Once you’ve identified anxious behaviors in your cat, the first step is to make an appointment with your veterinarian to either diagnose or rule out any underlying health issues or toxins that might be causing your kitty stress. Because cats tend to hide their pain, this is not something that is likely to be obvious, and may require a thorough series of blood panels and other tests. If it turns out that your cat is suffering from pain or a medical issue, treating the issue may be all that’s required to eliminate the anxious behavior and help your kitty get back to their normal self.
On the other hand, if your vet rules out a physical problem as the cause, this may mean that the issue is psychological. If this is the case, your vet should be able to advise you on a course of treatment.
Stress Symptoms In Dogs
As much as we wish dogs could talk like the adorable characters in childrens movies, they cant. Therefore they cant tell us if something is wrong. As their owner, you are responsible for looking for indications and signals that anything is wrong.
Fortunately, we build a deep relationship with our dogs, which allows us to acquire a pretty good feel of what theyre communicating, or would be expressing, so we can tell if theyre acting like their regular selves based on their normal behavior.
If your dog suddenly begins to act strange, its a definite indicator that something is wrong. The following are some of the mosttypical indicatorsof stress in dogs:
- Excessive barking
- Changes in attitude, such as cowering and hiding to being openly hostile towards humans or animals
- Increased or decreased appetite, changes in feces, or diarrhea are all symptoms of digestive issues
- Drooling or yawning in excess
- Physiological abnormalities, such as dilated pupils or pushed forward or back ears, are prevalent
- Itching or scratching that is excessive
Every dog is unique. Some breeds have similar warning signs to look out for, but no one knows your dog better than you. Its crucial to pay attention to your dogs typical behaviors to see if theyve changed and if these are indicators that they are stressed.
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Is It Normal For A Cat To Die Suddenly
As cats move into their senior years, age-related diseases become commonplace. While some cats may die very suddenly, many age-related diseases are slow and progressive and can be managed with veterinary care over a long period of time. Eventually, the cat will move into the late stages of the disease and pass into the dying phase.
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.
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What Are The Signs Of Stress In Cats
If your cat is feeling stressed, their behaviour may change. Some of these changes can happen suddenly and be very obvious, but others can develop gradually or be harder to spot.
Some signs your cat might be feeling stressed include:
- Hiding or staying out of the way all the time
- Avoiding certain places, other pets or people
- Poor coat quality
- Meowing or yowling more than normal
- Sudden changes in behaviour
- Aggression towards other pets or people
Many of these signs can be caused by medical problems as well as stress. So if youâre worried about your cat or they show a sudden change in behaviour, always contact your vet for advice first.
A Sudden Onset Of Aggression
Again, if your cat is usually calm and sweetand suddenly those claws are coming outthis can be a sign that they are stressed. Our cats dont have the ability to sit you down and tell you exactly whats bothering them, so if they react out of anger or frustration, take notice. Never for any reason should you shame or scold your cat for being suddenly aggressive towards you or others in the home. When a cat is stressed, they are highly defensive as a means to deal with the situation. Help to make things easier on them and come to them with calmness and concern.
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Sudden Movements And Loud Noises
Cats are often spooked by sudden movements that occur around them. While humans can find it cute or funny when a cat leaps a few feet into the air, turns, and takes off at a run to find a place to hide, it isnât cute or funny to the cat.
While some sudden movements or loud noises are inevitable, you shouldnât allow anyone to purposefully produce them with the intent of seeing how your cat responds. It can leave your cat feeling insecure and permanently jittery if it occurs too often.
How To Know If A Kitten Is Stressed
This article was co-authored by Brian Bourquin, DVM. Brian Bourquin, better known as Dr. B to his clients, is a Veterinarian and the Owner of Boston Veterinary Clinic, a pet health care and veterinary clinic with three locations, South End/Bay Village, the Seaport, and Brookline, Massachusetts. Boston Veterinary Clinic specializes in primary veterinary care, including wellness and preventative care, sick and emergency care, soft-tissue surgery, dentistry. The clinic also provides specialty services in behavior, nutrition, and alternative pain management therapies using acupuncture, and therapeutic laser treatments. Boston Veterinary Clinic is an AAHA accredited hospital and Bostons first Fear Free Certified Clinic. Brian has over 19 years of veterinary experience and earned his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Cornell University.There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 13,139 times.
All cats experience stress, but too much stress can be a bad thing. Cats show that they are stressed through changes in their behaviors. To know if your cat is stressed, look for physical changes like lack of appetite or changes in urination. You should also notice any behavioral changes, like excessive grooming or isolation. Finally, figure out if your home has experienced any recent major changes that may lead to stress.
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Pets May Show A Whale Eye When They’re Nervous
Ever have a pet look at you sideways with only one eye? Known as a “whale eye” or side-eye, this expression is often a sign of discomfort.
“Their eyes get dilated and you can only see a sliver of the white of their eye as they look at you from the side. Whale eye is an indication that they are stressed or anxious,” Johnson told Insider.
If you notice your pet making this expression, Johnson advised that it’s a good idea to give them some space and remove any potential stressors from the environment, such as other pets or loud children.