How do you know if a cat is stressed?
Cat stress should not be taken lightly. Indeed, a stressed cat can develop behavioral or health problems (urinary tract infection, infectious disease, ...). It is therefore important for a cat owner to quickly detect the signs that show that your cat is anxious. In this article, you will discover our tips for spotting the signs and treating them. Even if he does not have the stress factors like we do (traffic jam, work, ...) your cat, just like humans are under stress. The explanation is both individual (some cats are more anxious than others) and natural, stress being vital for felines living in the wild. However, for those that are domesticated, stress in cats is not to be taken lightly.
How to spot the symptoms of stress in cats
Contrary to dogs, kitty generally tends to remain very discreet when it has health problems. To detect a possible stress, it will thus be necessary to observe it well. You may notice the following symptoms:
- Your cat gets dirty;
- He remains listless and immobile all day long;
- He increases the number of his urinary markings;
- He shows abnormal aggressiveness;
- He meows a lot;
- Loses appetite or becomes bulimic;
- He cleanses himself excessively;
- He shows great nervousness.
This is a non-exhaustive list of signs to be interpreted as stress "markers".
Warning: these changes in behaviour can sometimes also hide another illness. In any case, you should consult a veterinarian.
Anxiety in cats can have several origins
In the previous section, the different signs (behaviour) that show that your cat is stressed were listed. If you suspect your cat is stressed, first try to identify the cause of her disorder. It's not always simple, because in felines the causes of anxiety are multiple. This stress may be due to:
- A change of residence;
- The arrival of a new family member (baby or other pet);
- A death;
- A new piece of furniture or the displacement of certain objects;
- Boredom and inactivity;
- Abuse of punishment and reprimands;
- Separation anxiety;
- Excessive noise or agitation around him;
- Sharing his restricted territory with other cats;
- Fear of lack of food.
How can you reduce your cat's stress?
If you have been able to identify the source of stress, the ideal would be to eliminate it if possible. However, this is not always feasible (arrival of a baby or moving house). Stress can be dealt with initially by simply modifying your cat's living conditions, in the sense of comfort and well-being. It will be necessary to avoid punishing the cat, improve his meals, increase his water ration, provide scratching posts... and above all spend more time cuddling and playing with him!
If these first measures do not produce the expected result, it may be necessary to consult a veterinarian. He is the only one qualified to consider deeper treatments to relieve your cat.
The rhythm of his meals, a possible cause of stress for the cat
Did you know that cats are nibblers? Cats will eat several times during the day in small quantities (up to 20 meals per 20 hours). Believing they are doing the right thing, some cat owners are content to give their companion one or two meals a day. Unless there is a risk of obesity, it is advisable to leave the food ration permanently available to your cat. This is why it is important to use an adapted cat bowls.
Offer him a calming cat bed
Did you know that cats sleep between 12 and 16 hours a day? They alternate light and deep sleep cycles that allow them to regenerate. Our Calming Cat Bed offers many advantages, the main one being to offer your cat a haven of peace.
To go further, you can have more answers in our article "How to make your cat happy".
It should be noted that despite all your efforts, you will not be able to offer a stress-free life to your cat, and that is not the goal. The goal is to ensure that your cat's anxiety state does not become chronic and degenerate into illness. Remember that by taking care of your pet you will also be taking care of yourself.