Anxiety in Cats

Did you know that cats can suffer from stress and anxiety, just like people? Fluffy may have tried very hard to garner a reputation as a cold, calculating predator, but in truth, our feline buddies are very emotional, and can get depressed, sad, nervous, and/or frightened. Here, an Arlington Heights, TX vet discusses kitty anxiety.

Causes of Anxiety

Many different things can cause anxiety in kitties. Big changes, such as moving, changing owners, or gaining or losing a furry roommate, are very stressful for Fluffy. Noise and commotion can also make cats uneasy. Boredom is another issue: pets need entertainment and stimulation to stay happy and healthy. Other possible causes include dirty litterboxes, overcrowding, sickness, and loneliness.

Signs of Anxiety

The symptoms of anxiety can vary from cat to cat. However, there are some common ones to watch for, such as hiding, poor grooming, aggression, withdrawal, reduced appetite, and litterbox issues. It’s important to realize that medical issues can also cause these problems. If you see any of these symptoms in your furball, take Fluffy to the vet for a full exam.

Helping Kitty Cope

If your kitty gets the all-clear, then you’ll want to turn your attention to getting your furry pal purring again. Make sure that Fluffy has lots of fun toys, and play with her every day. This will burn off your kitty’s excess energy, leaving her calmer afterwards. If you know or suspect that your cat is unhappy because of a four-legged roommate, you can take steps to reduce friction between them. Offer your cat lots of hiding spots, so she always has a place to go to in every room. This can be an enclosed kitty condo, a pet tent, or even just a spot under the bed. Finally, make sure your feline pal has good food, fresh water, and a clean litterbox that she doesn’t have to share. Kitty-calming products, such as sprays, can also help.

What Not To Do

If Fluffy acts up out of anxiety, don’t punish her. Cats don’t’ understand punishment, so this could just leave your feline friend leaving anxious, scared, or angry. Instead, try to find out the source of your pet’s anxiety, and work on addressing that. Ask your vet for more information.

Please contact us, your Arlington Heights, TX pet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We are happy to help!