Similarly, like people, cats can also be anxious, which can cause severe problems to both her and yourself. Anxiety is a common feeling among felines, and if you overlook it, the symptoms may lead to severe problems and issues.
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It is vital to understand more about cat anxiety, as well as different symptoms that could happen so that you can learn how to notice signs that something is wrong with her. At the same time, we will provide you different ways to treat the cat’s anxiety, which is an important consideration.
Generally, we can differentiate various types of anxiety in people. However, cat anxiety can also manifest in numerous ways. According to experts, we can differentiate three aspects:
- Phobia – It is a persistent and intensive fear of a particular situation or stimulus, such as a thunderstorm.
- Fear – It is an intuitive feeling that results when a particular object, situation, or person represents an external threat.
- Anxiety – The ability to anticipate future dangers that could result in constant fear
Keep in mind that in this particular category, anxiety is considered as an ongoing condition, while phobias and fear are temporary. According to experts, cat anxiety will develop the initial periods of maturity or after 12 months.
Why Does It Happen?
The most common aspect of anxiety in cats comes in the form of separation anxiety. However, other factors such as health, behavioral, and environmental can also affect this particular problem.
The leading causes for it include:
- A traumatic experience that happened in the past such as physical neglect, abuse, being caged, abandonment as well as other situations that left a mark within your feline friend.
- Inability to be exposed to environmental and social perspectives during the initial weeks.
- Unfamiliar environment
- Change in routine can easily lead to separation anxiety
- A disease or particular problem such as hyperthyroidism
- A new situation such as introducing new family member or pet
- Cat dementia is commonly associated with anxiety
The Most Common Cat Anxiety Symptoms
The first symptom of this particular condition is the visible sign of discomfort, while other signs can also show that your cat is experiencing severe stress. The common symptoms of anxiety in cats include:
- Defecating or urinating outside the litter box
- Changes in drinking and eating such as consuming too much food or lack in appetite
- Increased aggression
- Inappropriate destructive behavior such as scratching
- Excessive vocalization
- Compulsive pacing
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How to Calm Down an Anxious Feline?
If you wish to reduce the possibility for your cat to experience this particular problem, you should talk with the designated veterinarian to determine the cause for it.
We have mentioned above that some cats may experience a particular feeling due to a specific condition that is contributing to it.
It is essential to determine the root of a problem so that you can create an appropriate treatment plan that will help your feline friend.
1. Safe Space
This particular approach will help your cat deal with both phobias and other forms of anxiety. As soon as your cat is stressed out due to outside stimuli or other reasons such as other pets in the household, it would help if you allowed it to escape the commotion at the safe space.
You can do it on a tall tree, separate room with enclosed areas or window perch, for instance. The safe space is essential for cats that experience phobias from vacuums, fireworks, and thunderstorms.
2. More Playtime Means Less Anxiety
It would help if you spent time with your cat, which is an essential consideration that will provide her a sense of belonging and connection.
It would be best if you also implemented a daily routine of playing with your cat; at least fifteen minutes a day will allow her to reduce the stress.
It is similar to creating a safe space because you need to make sure that the cat is completely safe and away from things that could cause anxiety. By keeping her stimulated with food puzzles, catnip toys, and window-watching spots, she will reduce the stress as well as fear.
3. Routine is Crucial
Cats enjoy the routine, and a slight change can lead to separation anxiety that may cause severe problems. You should give both water and food to your cat at the same time every single day and clean the litter box daily as well.
One of the biggest causes of anxiety among cats is the dirty litter box because cats are creatures that do not enjoy stepping on the dirt too much. Therefore, if you do not do it, you will notice that she will start to defecate and urinate outside of the box.
You should do it daily and scoop it based on the situation.
Natural Anxiety Remedies
You can find numerous alternative remedies that do not require giving medications that could lead to even more substantial and more significant problems in the long run. That is the main reason why you should implement proper supplementation for your cat, such as:
- CBD – You probably know that CBD is the perfect solution for treating anxiety among humans. However, the same thing works for cats as well. You can find a wide array of options and types, including oils, treats, and capsules. It is vital to note that we are not saying that you should get your cat high and give it a regular weed because THC can lead to severe problems.
- Treats and Diets – You can find the treats and implement a diet that will reduce the anxiety in the long run, especially since some cat chews are there to calm them down.
- Herbs – You should check out which herbs are safe for cat consumption, including valerian and catnip for anxiety relief. Implementing these herbs in a regular diet may stimulate your cat at first, but the euphoria will lead to a relaxed and calm state.
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Visit the Vet
Finally, if you cannot handle the anxiety symptoms with remedies we have mentioned above, you should go to the vet to get anxiety meds. The vet will prescribe something for short-term relief or long-term anti-anxiety meds that are effective in the long run.
However, avoid giving your cat anything unless you consult with the vet first.