Do you know how to Minimize Stress in Your Cat’s Life? Being a cat sometimes isn’t as easy as it looks, it’s not all naps, nibbles, and strokes. There are a lot of things which could potentially cause stress in your cat’s life and as a responsible cat owner, it is important to ensure that you are aware of how your cat is feeling so that you can take steps to fix any issues which may be causing stress in your pet’s life.
Identifying Stress in Your Cat
There are a number of key things you should watch out for to determine whether or not your cat is suffering from stress. These are:
- More Frequent Urination is common when a cat is suffering from stress so you should make sure you are aware of how often your cat typically urinates so that you can spot if they are using their litter tray more frequently.
- Be aware of any obvious signs of your cat struggling to pass urine comfortably as well as any spots of blood appearing in their urine.
- Bowel problems can also indicate that your cat is stressed, some cats will produce diarrhea due to the stress upsetting their stomach.
- Pay attention to where your cat is defecating or urinating at, any urination or defecation outside of the litter tray is a strong indicator of stress.
- If your cat is meowing a lot more than usual or seems very keen to spend much more time with you than usual this is another indicator of stress.
- Changes in eating habits should be watched too.
Causes of Feline Stress and How to Deal With Them
1. Health problems
Health problems, particularly one which causes obvious physical discomfort will put your cat under a lot of stress, this can include things like fleas, inflammations, and dental conditions. Be aware that cats are very good at hiding discomfort so watch out for any signs.
If you suspect that your cat may be suffering any sort of physical discomfort make sure consult your vet about any health problems as soon as possible as you can never be too careful – for example, it is not unheard of for cats to die of extreme flea infestations, something like this would obviously cause severe stress however even small health problems can trouble your cat.
2. Loud Noise
Loud Noise can cause stress for your cat. Particularly if these noises are persistent and your cat has no means of escaping from it. Ensure that your TV or music is not too loud and if you are listening to something which may possibly be too loud for your cat ensure that the door is open so that your cat can freely leave the room. It is also a great idea to create a safe area for your cat to go to where it knows it can escape from any stressful situations such as lots of guest visiting, this area should ideally be off the ground, sheltered and quiet. Something simple like a cardboard box on a table in a bedroom would be sufficient.
Lack of stimulation, particularly if your cat is confined to a relatively small indoor space, can cause your cat to display signs of stress. Ways to help minimize this would be to hide toys and treats around your apartment which would allow your cat to enjoy the activity of hunting, you can also get interactive toys for your cat and it is also a good idea to spend at least 5 minutes a day playing with your cat.
4. Toilet Facilities
Poor toilet facilities can also cause stress for cats, if your litter box is too small for your cat or if it is not cleaned regularly enough.
Ensure that you have a good well-aired litter box that is cleaned out on a daily basis and also ensure that you replace the litter at least once a week (more if you have multiple cats using the tray).
5. Aggressive Neighborhood Cats
If your cat is an outdoor cat they are likely to encounter other cats, cats can be fiercely territorial so sometimes you may get a cat that may be aggressive or violent towards your cat. This obviously causes a huge amount of stress for your cat and can leave them feeling intimidated and extremely wary. Even if they see neighboring cats looking at them through windows this can cause your cat to become stressed.
The easy fix for dealing with aggressive neighborhood cats is to keep your cat indoors, cats can live a very, happy content and fulfilled life without going outside if you make a few small adjustments.
However, if you are not willing to keep your cat inside there are still plenty of things you can do. First and foremost ensure that you have a smart catflap which only opens for your pet, the last thing you want is other cats being able to come into your home as this will make it extremely hard for your cat to relax if they are constantly worried about the possibility of another cat appearing.
Another thing you can do is to ensure that litter trays and scratching posts and things and places that your cat likes to frequent are kept out of view so that when your cat is using them they cannot be watched by other cats in the garden.
You should also wash doorways and all cat entry points to your home to remove the smell of other cats.
Finally, to prevent cats from coming in your garden or near your home you can put chicken wire up on roofs and fences so that other cats will be unable to gain access to your garden and intimidate your cat, this may also prevent your own cat from leaving the garden which will also prevent them from encountering any aggressive cats or upsetting your neighbors by pooping in their flowerbed.
Hopefully, the tips in this article will help your cat to relax and be able to feel completely comfortable in its own furry skin, if you have any more tips or any experience of dealing with a stressed cat please share them in the comments below.