As you can see from the list above many symptoms of cat stress are also symptoms of various sicknesses. It turns out that there are multiple signs that could indicate your feline friend is experiencing some stress. It is normal for a cat to experience occasional stress such as stress when traveling in a car and anywhere else from home. If your pet determines that your cat is stressed, they can provide medical advice on how to help relieve the stress. Your initial reaction to a "potty accident" may be to yell and … Cats can get stressed by all sorts of things, just like dogs and other companion animals. Cats experience anxiety, too, and if you know your cat’s personality well enough, you will be able to easily spot signs of stress. Always let your cat lead the way when it comes to interaction. If you notice your cat is acting strange or behaving unlike his normal self, there’s indeed a chance that a certain event is making him anxious. Once you've managed to wrangle him or her into a cat carrier, go to the vet. Whether it’s work-related, due to health issues, family problems, or because of financial concerns, there are so many opportunities for stress to set up camp in our lives. Signs of Stress in Cats. To a cat, stress is a threat and she will typically respond to stress much like she would to a threat. The big give-aways of stress are often found by looking it the head. Such an interesting topic and post. An anxious cat is a cat that lives in constant fear and has phobias which it perhaps did not have before. While people often refer to the classic big cats as the ancestry of today’s domesticated cats, they’re really more like distant cousins. Domesticated cats still keep this instinct to mask distress and/or pain intact, so it’s important to be able to spot the signs of cat stress so you can help your furry little pal. What are some signs we should look out for? Cat stress signs are something that every cat owner should know about. Stress in cats can be caused by an illness, fear or when your cat is anxious. Company. Urinating Outside the Litter Box. There are a lot of signs that a cat can be stressed. It’s so bad for them. This is actually a version of a change in a cat’s environment. It’s also a prime example of a point that I tend to drive home with a sledgehammer in every post I write, which is to visit your vet sooner rather than later to get help. Cats experience anxiety, too, and if you know your cat’s personality well enough, you will be able to easily spot signs of stress. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Visit Insider's homepage for more stories. In either case, your vet will be able to recommend the most effective course of treatment. The stress involved in fight or flight is acute stress, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Unfortunately, many of the signs of cat stress can also be signs that your cat is sick, so it’s important to take your cat to the vet immediately. 1. Like some humans, cats will overeat in response to tension. Speak with your veterinarian if you're cat is sleeping more than usual or seems overly lethargic. Chronic or long-term stress is much more of a problem. Diffusers are simply plugged into an outlet in a room to provide a constant release of pheromone into the air, while the spray can be used in a more targeted way on bedding or in areas of a room. However, a cat should not be actively and constantly hiding from you and everyone else in the house. While there are myriad ways that any one cat might become stressed, the following causes tend to be the most common among cats. Changes in household dynamics … This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. He may instead use the floor, a bed, or another surface. You should also have several cat scratchers throughout the home so your cats never feel that they have to compete. According to PetMD.com the following 9 signs are indicative of anxiety and/or stress in cats. One of the most common feline responses to stress is inappropriate elimination. Available in diffusers and sprays, Feliway releases pheromones into the air that help calm a stressed cat. Aloofness is second nature to cats. To help to understand and reduce your pet’s stress, there are common signs to … It's … One of the benefits of cleaning the litter box is that an owner will easily notice non-typical signs, such as diarrhea or constipation. I am so loving this blog. 1) Urination Outside of Their Litter Box. Molly Farrell, veterinarian and owner … One of the most serious aspects of feline anxiety are compulsive behaviors such as stereotypies. Causes of OCD in cats aren't really known, and as such it's generally characterized as a mental disorder, although it can be initiated by stress, says PetMD. Marking and spraying behaviors may increase when a cat feels stressed. While bold cats will view the new baby as an oddity to be inspected, timid cats might be stressed out by the new sounds and smells associated with your bundle of joy. Urinating outside the litter box; This indicates a behavioral problem or potentially something more serious medically. It's annoying, smelly and a pain to clean up, but pay attention. Excessive shedding is one subtle sign of stress in dogs. This guide will help you recognise signs of stress in your cat. 2. To a cat, a new baby is essentially a new guest, and as we just covered, this can cause stress for some cats. Chronic or long-term stress is much more of a problem. Increased Vocalization: Many cats love to meow and even howl. Even worse, stress can be an indication that your cat has a health issue. Whether your cat is a new pet or you’ve brought in a new pet, introducing new animals to a cat’s environment can be highly stressful for some cats. Your dog and cat can become stressed due to a number of situations, which include: vet visits, kennel and cattery visits, unfamiliar environments, loud noises, travelling and dog separation anxiety. When a cat looks bad and dirty, it is most likely not doing its grooming, which is a sign of stress, pain or illness. Make sure your cat is getting appropriate exercise – a game as simple as follow the feather or chasing a laser light can help promote a healthier mental state and release stress. As you can see from the list above many symptoms of cat stress are also symptoms of various sicknesses. Believe it or not, too little action can be a source of stress for a cat, as well. Best not let it go and speak with your vet. According to Patricia B. McConnell, Ph.D., a certified applied animal behaviorist, chronic stress can even "suppress the immune response, causing a broad range of illnesses." Ben is an animal lover, blogger, and all around geek. The root cause of stress in cats is change; a change in the sort of food served to them can also trigger stress. We will discuss six common causes of negative stress, and what you can do to alleviate them. “If your cat is suddenly very combative, that is a huge red flag,” says … Loss of appetite, retching, increased stool production, or diarrhea. Cats need interaction just like dogs and people do. Signs your cat has anxiety can include everything from peeing outside the litter box to excessive grooming. There are many situations that can indeed cause a lot of stress to your little friend, and knowing the symptoms can greatly help you aid your cat in stress relief. Your cat’s environment. Wait until the dog or cat stands casually, with their ears up or drooping, and with their eyes squinted or … For example, excessive eating and drinking can be symptoms of diabetes, … becoming less … Look for body language that exhibits stress. Signs your cat has anxiety can include everything from peeing outside the litter box to excessive grooming. Cats that urinate outside the cat litter box are trying to tell us something. You should take your cat to the vet to get checked out. He divides his love equally between his family, his animals, and his video games. These specialists are certified in behavior therapy for a range of issues including cat stress and can be incredibly beneficial to the process of helping your cat destress. Cats don’t do well when their environment is disrupted, and nothing is more disruptive than leaving the home. Quality time with their owners can even be considered a resource. Just as with people, there are some cats who are more easily stressed than others. This change can be anything from being gone from the home longer than usual to being home more than usual. 1. This “cat music” is basically a soundtrack comprised of calming cat vocalizations like purring and suckling using the sound frequencies that cats use. Cats don't go on fasts or diets like we do so it's important to consult a veterinarian if your cat suddenly loses interest in cat food or stops eating altogether. So if your cat does go off script, and starts eating less (or even skipping meals altogether), this is an important sign – and one that can indicate stress, pain, or another serious problem. Increased sleeping or hyperactivity. Vomiting – This symptom may be a hard one to spot since it is a generalized symptom for many illnesses. Loneliness is a huge contributing factor to stress. One of the most commonly known indicators that a cat may be stressed is a behavior change that happens fairly suddenly and seems abnormal for your cat… However a nervous cat – the kind that tends to zip under the bed for almost any reason – can view guests as a source of stress. So now we’ve established why stress occurs and what it does to our beloved cats. Again, you’ll still need to make a vet appointment, but they can soothe your kitty in the meantime. Stress in cats acts much the same way. Pet her when she wants it and let her mosey along when she’s done. Cats are so mysterious, it’s hard to know what they’re feeling. 8 Signs of Stress in Cats & Dogs. The disruption in your cat’s environment can be very stressful. This is something I personally have experience with: My cat Teddy … You may have a cat who is rather timid and fearful normally and so even small stress triggers … In other words, an anxious cat appears chronically stressed … I never really thought of this. I’m glad you shared this. With any unusual behaviour change, it is important to get your cat checked out by the vet. Need to calm down your stressed cat asap? Another big symptom of anxiety is when your cat’s energy levels are zero. Cats who have accidents outside of their litter box or who have a loss of appetite may be stressed out by their environment or fellow animals. Treating cat stress involves a combination of environmental and behavioral approaches. Loss of Appetite. Keep watch for this, and this sign of stress … The bladder is the cat’s stress target. This is especially true when leaving includes a trip to the vet or groomer – both of which involve activities that virtually all cats hate. Loss of appetite, retching, … Just because cats can sleep up to 20 hours a day doesn't necessarily mean your cat will. The anxiety and fear associated with stress affects your cat similar to the way it affects people, though cats tend to hide it well. Here are the top signs of stress in cats. BUY PAM’S BOOKS NOW. Pet parents may unwittingly reinforce OCD behaviors by trying to soothe their cats or giving them attention while they're doing the unwanted behavior. Consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist to find out what it is. For more information on cat behavior and training, refer to the articles on our website and the best-selling books by Pam Johnson-Bennett. Though we may think that our cat is purposefully disobedient, it’s more likely that they’re trying to tell us something. When cats don’t have an outlet for their energy and predatory instincts, it can be quite stressful for them. For more information on cat behavior and training, refer to the articles on our website and the best-selling books by Pam Johnson-Bennett. Here are some signs of stress you'll want to watch out for in your cat, especially if they occur suddenly. In addition, separate each cat when feeding and have more than one water bowl. However house cats are good at hiding their pain making it difficult for their human parents to timely detect disease or emotional trauma in the feline. The startle response is one of the signs of stress in cats and occurs when cats are sleeping or resting, and they respond excessively to a stimulus. If your cat shows these signs or more… It’s best to consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviourist immediately, as if this constant stress on the cat is not addressed, it could cause severe illness and irreversible conditions. The more severe signs of salivation, shaking, flattened ears, and small, crouched body position are often misinterpreted as signs of distress. wow! It’s all about the body language. If you live in a single-story home, have a litter box for each cat in the home plus one extra. by BEN B | Jan 14, 2021 | Health | 7 comments. They become balls of energy that cannot be released. Remember, you are a resource to your cat, so whether your cat is an “only child“ or you have multiple cats, be sure that your kitty or kitties get adequate one-on-one time with you. I do not have cats but itis fun to learn. Boredom is high on the list of causes of stress. It’s most commonly seen in multi-cat homes when a cat might feel like they have to compete for food, water, litter box space, and the like. Anxiety isn't just for humans; cats can get it too. This is their way of telling you, “hey, human, something is not okay” in their language. I do not see a cat in my future but we never know because I love pets. Many of the following signs may be evident: Immobility Body – crouched directly on top of all fours, shaking Belly – not exposed, rapid breathing Legs – bent Tail – close to the body Head – … I have two cats who I always make sure to see for these signs too. Even if the vet determines that your cat is simply stressed out, they’ll be able to help you more effectively address the causes and resolve the issues. You’ll notice both physical and behavioral symptoms associated with a stressed cat. In his spare time he is attempting to get a blog off the ground. In reality, today’s domesticated cats descend from Felis silvestris lybica, or the African Wildcat. Stress can make anyone a little crazy, even our cats. Here are four signs of stress in cats: In addition, being kenneled can be an incredibly stressful experience for a lot of cats. You really do have to be able to tell if they’re stressed out, though. Your email address will not be published. Stress and anxiety in cats: signs and solutions Cats are naturally adept at hiding weakness; it's a defence mechanism used to protect them in the wild. Your email address will not be published. Signs of Stress. Like compulsive licking, excessive scratching can be indicative of several health and behavioral issues. As I mentioned in the moving bullet, some cats become very stressed if their environment is disrupted. Yes. Here are some common signs of stress in cats: Inappropriate elimination Inappropriate scratching Diarrhea Hiding or extra clinginess Decreased appetite Over-grooming, sometimes … Although it’s not a straight line, stress can lead to death in your cat in a roundabout way. This is really good information! Fights or aggressive actions towards household pets or other animals can be a sign of a stressed or sick cat. If it does happen, take your cat to the veterinarian rather than try to crack the kitty language code. The signs of stress in pets can be easily confused with other illnesses, so speak with your veterinarian if you notice any of the following signs: 1. If you have a jumpy cat and you’re having guests over or remodeling, create a safe zone for your cat. If you have a multi-cat home, be sure that your cats have access to the resources that they need. Skip the groomer and go straight for the vet's office. It’s all about the body language. As your cat becomes more familiar with its new home, it should settle down into a routine. Required fields are marked *. You are part of your cat’s environment, and if your routine changes, it changes her environment. The severest signs of FAS represent fight or aggression stance, including the offensive stance, a heightened “Halloween cat” posture, pupils constricted or dilated, intense … “Anxious cats get a big round-eyed look, with pupils dilated,” says McConnell. Cats can be poor communicators, and tend to become distant and internalise the stress, making it hard to tell where it comes from. Many find the tone of a cat "talking" quite soothing, but be wary of unusually long or recurring bouts of panicked meows — especially if your cat is not the typical "talker." The stress involved in fight or flight is acute stress, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Cats are known for their fastidious grooming, but licking themselves raw or bald is a clear sign of distress. Studies have shown that cat music relaxes cats, so it can be a valuable tool in helping to calm a stressed cat. While cats try to hide their stress or pain, they aren’t always successful. If you suspect that stress-related discomfort is adversely affecting your cat’s life, here’s how to take action to relieve your pet’s stress: Spot the signs Be observant of changes in your cat’s behavior. If possible, outfit a room as far away as possible from the disruption in the home with a cat bed, scratcher, toys, and everything else your cat needs to be a happy camper. An extremely relaxed and confident cat may view visitors as new friends and sources of cuddling. Again, it's best to consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist immediately. 8 Signs of Cat Stress. 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