How To Relax A Stressed Cat
Cats can get stressed out – ensure that your laid-back kitty keeps purring.
Just as stress in humans can lead to a variety of health problems in the long run, it can also have a detrimental effect upon the health of your cat. While humans may stress about finances, a job, and relationships, cats may end up dealing with high levels of stress as a result of not getting enough attention or exercise, resulting in long periods of boredom and loneliness. Or it could be caused by certain members of the family, including other animals in the house. And poor environmental conditions can also cause a feline to become stressed.
How Stress Affects a Cat’s Body
The longer a cat is stressed out, the more likely it will be that a health problem will result. The anxiety, fear, and uneasiness your pet feels on a consistent basis will begin to take its toll on the immune system as it tries to work hard to bring the body back into a state of balance and calm.
Related: What Is Feline Whisker Fatigue?
Stress can also adversely affect the adrenal glands, which are known as the body’s stress organs. When these become tired, the cat has an even lower tolerance for stress, and the immune system is overworked and becomes progressively weaker.
Behavioral problems and skin problems are just a couple of the many common conditions that arise when a cat isn’t at ease. Therefore, it’s important to take steps to ensure your cat is happy in his home and content with his surroundings and family.
Stress in a cat can be triggered by a variety of situations, including having a baby, sending a child off to college that the animal was bonded to, moving to a new home, getting a new pet, or even arguing amongst family members. Remember, animals are highly receptive to the feelings of the humans around them, so if there is a lot of tension amongst the members of a household, a cat can feel it too.
Signs of a Stressed Cat
Some of the common signs that your cat is dealing with stress include:
- Skin problems that won’t go away
- A male cat who is spraying around the house to mark territory
- Pica, which is the consumption of nonfood items
- Anorexia or overeating
- Urinary tract problems, including blockages caused by crystals that build up as a result of an imbalance caused by taxed adrenal glands
Natural Remedies to Help Your Cat Relax
Always start by feeding a high-quality diet that consists mainly of moisture-rich wet food and high quality animal proteins without grains. A low-quality diet on its own will stress the body and make your pet more susceptible to illness. Nutritional supplements like vitamin B12 and folic acid may also help relieve tension in stressed cats. Always work under the guidance of a vet when it comes to providing extra supplements to ensure you’re giving the appropriate dosage.
Give your cat a way to expend his energy. Provide plenty of toys and room to run around and play. Take time out of each day or week to spend quality time with your pet.
Make sure your home environment is appropriate for a feline. Provide some cat trees for your cat to climb or hide in. Give your pet some space where he can retreat when things get too loud or when he wants to have some quiet time alone.
Work with a holistic vet to get the right homeopathic and herbal remedies, such as St. John’s Wort, that will work perfectly with your pet’s constitution and bring about a sense of ease and tranquility. Bach Flower Essences are popular remedies for stressed out animals because they’re non-toxic and don’t cause any side effects.
Thankfully, there are many other ways to calm down a frazzled cat, from playing slow-paced music to gently massaging your pet and reassuring him that everything is okay. Work with your cat’s unique personality and needs to determine what the best remedy would be.