8 Tips to Keep Your Cat Calm

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8 Tips to Keep Your Cat Calm

Cats are one of the most laid-back animals around. With Garfield as the poster boy of carefree, relaxed felines, you may want to own one since you think you’ll have an easy time making these creatures a part of your family with their nonchalant attitude and the right cat accessories and supplies.

Although cats tend to be laid-back, they can become anxious and agitated at one point or another. If it’s your first time to own a feline pet, you may feel stressed out yourself because of certain unexpected (at least, from your point of view) behaviours they show.

But if you want to be a fur parent, you don’t have to worry about soothing your feline pet if they become nervous or overly excited. With our tried-and-tested tips and tricks, you’ll learn how to calm down a cat and enjoy the benefits of having one in your home.

 

 

Calming Anxious and Agitated Cats

Dealing with an anxious, scared and aggressive cat can be challenging. However, you don’t have to be stressed out and wait for a long time for them to calm down on their own.

Here’s how to calm a stressed cat down:

 

1. Know the signs of anxiety and stress in cats.

Anxiety and stress in feline pets can take different forms. Some signs clearly indicate they are experiencing these emotions while others are not so obvious that you may be unaware they are going through an emotional upheaval.

As a first-time cat parent, below are the usual signs and symptoms of anxiety and stress you should watch out for in your pet:

  • Physical signs, such as dilated pupils, ears turning out to the side or rotating backwards, and twitching the end of their tails

  • Excessive meowing

  • Constantly hiding or crouching down to make themselves small or inconspicuous

  • Over- or undereating and over-grooming

An agitated cat that may have been suffering from prolonged stress and anxiety may demonstrate these behaviours and more, which include the following:

  • Spraying urine and defecating indoors and not in or near their litter box

  • Aggression, irritability and reacting negatively when being touched

  • Repetitive behaviour, such as walking in circles, pacing back and forth, digging or licking at the same areas, and chewing and scratching furniture

  • Inability to settle down

Your cat may display one or more of these signs in different frequencies and degrees. Take note when your pet starts showing these behaviours and how often they do them.

 

2. Identify the cause of your cat’s stress and anxiety.

Various things can cause a cat to experience stress and anxiety. These include moving homes, introducing a new family member, or changing your cat’s routine. They can also become nervous when they hear thunder, exploding fireworks and other loud noises.

Cats from shelters and those that have been rehomed several times tend to be afraid easily and get anxious quickly when they remember a previous trauma or bad memory. They are also likely to experience feline separation anxiety, which means they will display signs of stress when they are apart from their owner and other pets.

If there are no changes in your cat’s environment and routine, but it is still anxious and even agitated, it may be suffering from a more serious medical condition, such as:

  • Hyperesthesia or twitch-skin syndrome

  • Hyperthyroidism

  • Epilepsy

  • Behavioural dysfunction, such as OCD

  • Cognitive dysfunction, which is prevalent in older cats

  • Sudden or chronic pain

If you suspect a medical issue is behind your pet’s anxiety and agitation, bring it to the vet immediately.

Once you know the cause or reasons behind your feline friend’s anxiety, you can find the best ways to calm it down.

 

 

3. Ensure your pet has a relaxing space.

Making your home a comfy, relaxing place for your cat can help you keep it calm at all times. But if this is not possible, you should have a quiet, cosy space where it can go once it starts showing signs of anxiety and agitation.

Below are some tips for creating a relaxing space for your feline friend:

  • Find a quiet room or spot in your home to turn into their bedroom or personal space. If possible, choose a place they love going to, such as a spare bedroom or empty closet. If you have young kids or dogs, consider installing a gate to keep them out of this area.

  • Ensure the area is warm. Cats feel at ease and love sleeping in warm spaces. As such, place their bed near a window or get them a self-warming bed.  

  • Put a scratching tree in your cat’s personal space. Felines scratch to relieve stress and mark their territory. Giving them a cat scratcher and tree provides them an outlet for these behaviours, allowing them to get some exercise and be mentally stimulated, both of which can help reduce their anxiety.

  • Ensure your cat has other toys in their space. To keep your pet occupied and less likely to be stressed out and restless, put some balls and other interactive toys in their space. Ensure their favourite playthings are also in this area since familiar items can help them relax.

If you’re leaving your feline friend unsupervised for a few hours, make sure they have access to food, water and a litter box so they have everything they need to relax.

 

4. Include playing and interacting with your cat in your daily routine.

Playing with your cat daily allows them to express their instinctual behaviours, release pent-up energy and frustrations, and stimulate their mind, which helps them alleviate their anxiety and stress.

Using interactive toys, such as feather wands or laser pointers, during playtime also allows your pet to satisfy their natural instincts in a safe environment. Moreover, you strengthen your bond with your pet, boosting their trust in you and helping them feel more secure.

Aside from feather wands or laser pointers, below are some other cat toys you should consider having at home:

  • Electronic self-propelling toys - https://www.petsdelight.com/flamingo-moving-electronic-flounder-cat-toy

  • Puzzle toys - https://www.petsdelight.com/flamingo-hanto-interactive-cat-toy-28-5x7-cm

  • Crinkle toys

  • Spinner cat toys

If you know the usual time your cat gets nervous or agitated, play with them just before it starts so you can help them forget their anxieties and focus on something else.

 

5. Know when to give your pet space.

Although playing with your feline friend before their anxiety is triggered can help keep it calm, you should know if doing this can help or not since your pet may need space to reduce feelings of unease.

Some cats turn to their owner for comfort when they are nervous or afraid, while others hide or prefer to be left alone. If your pet wants to hole up under the couch or go to its personal space, let it do so.

Avoid forcing your furry friend to come to you and playing with or cuddling if it is too frightened as doing so would only make it more anxious and agitated. Wait for your cat to come to you when it’s ready.

 

 

6. Put some music on.

Music can help anxious animals. However, you should play cat music to soothe a nervous and restless feline.

Cat music features cat vocalisations mimicking their purring and suckling sounds and frequencies similar to their vocal range. According to a study, playing this kind of music to felines can help ease their anxieties.

Go online to download or play cat music. Use a speaker if you want to drown out noise that is frightening or agitating your pet.   

If your pet has separation anxiety and they have to be by themselves for hours, try leaving the radio on when you’re not at home. The sound of human voices can help alleviate their loneliness and make them feel they are not alone.

 

7. Use calming products.

Certain products can help down a cat. These include sprays, diffusers, collars and wipes with pheromones that create a sense of familiarity and security in felines.

Some supplements also contain ingredients that can soothe nervous felines. You can get more details about these products from online shops that offer cat health supplies. cat medical supplies.

Catnip is another product you should always have at home when you have an anxious cat. Although this herb stimulates felines, this stimulation can distract them from the cause of their agitation and change their mood to a happier, less nervous one.

Additionally, catnip tires a cat out, helping them sleep through the night and be more mellow the following day.

Regardless of what calming products you want to use, consult your veterinarian first to ensure you get one suitable for your pet. Follow the recommended use or dose as well to keep your furry friend safe and healthy.

 

8. Speak with your vet about appropriate medical treatment.

If your cat’s anxiety and agitation are caused by a medical issue, such as pain, hyperthyroidism or seizure disorder, speak with your vet about the best way to treat it. Your pet may likely undergo surgery or receive a course of medication for treatment.

When your pet gets better, they will likely be less anxious and return to their normal behaviour.

However, if your feline friend has daily anxiety even if they are not sick or are still nervous and easily frightened even if they are healthy, ask your vet about giving your cat anti-anxiety medications.

If your cat is prescribed anti-anxiety medication, follow the vet’s dosage and schedule to ensure they get the most benefits from it. Also, bring your pet for follow-up checkups so the vet can assess if the treatment is working.

 

 

Now that you know what to do to calm down a cat, apply these tips when your furry friend is nervous or stressed. But remember to be patient since you may need to wait a while to see any changes.

Also, be flexible; some strategies may work for your feline companion while others may not. Be open to trying new methods and combinations to help your pet.

More importantly, work with your vet to manage your cat’s anxiety. With their help, you and your pet can manage your cat’s stress and continue having a happy, healthy relationship and family life.

Contact us if you need more details about our cat supplies and products that can help ease your pet’s anxiety.

 

Apr 29
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