Stressed cats


The cat is an animal, that due to its features, tend to suffer from stress when the environment around it changes.

Some of the situations causing stress in our cats are:

  1. Home change. The established order in the previous home is gone, such as the facial marks, and the areas for the cat to relax, play and urinate and defecate.
  2. Reformation works or changes in the furniture and painting.
  3. New people at home, such as a new baby or new cats or other animals.
  4. To stay alone at home for long periods of time or under the care of unfamiliar people.
  5. To come into the vet’s, kennels, etc.

The way in which a stressed cat reacts can be focused on:

  1. Passiveness: the animal will get hidden in different places, where it will feel himself safer, for some days or weeks.
  2. Marking excess: the animal insists on marking its territory in two ways. The first one is rubbing itself against the wall to leave its facial pheromones over it and get calmed down when noticing them. The second one is really disturbing and is aimed at its competitors. It consists on marking the different areas of the environment with the claws and urinating and defecating out of its box of sand.
  3. Another way for cats to respond to stress is aggressiveness towards other animals or the owners.

If our cat has developed one of this three symptoms, the first thing we have to do is to rule out this is due to a physical problem, and really motivated by stress. We have four action ways to try to correct these behavioural problems.

  1. To reduce stress. Give it places that make it feel safer, just a simple carton box. Avoid disturbing situations. Treat it softly, don’t make any forced touch, because it can not only be not admitted but also can make it more scared; and never tell it off, nor shout at it. That would only contribute to increase its fear. We are used to hierarchy and discipline with dogs, but cats, due to its primitive lonely instinct, don’t see us as chiefs or leaders, we are just flatmates for it.
  2. Education. Play with it (balls, ropes, sticks…) Use positive reinforcement (prizes, touch) and non-stressing negative ones such as water guns.
  3. Medical and/or surgical treatments. Certain psychotropic medicines and the castration of male cats can efficiently help to solve these problems.
  4. Pheromonotherapy. In almost all the situations causing stress, the application of the F3 pheromone minimizes the adaptation periods and reduces the tension in cats living at home as well as many of the diseases: idiomatic cystitis, anorexia, bulimia, compulsive licking, etc.


Av. Costa Cálida Nº 31 - CP 30860 Puerto de Mazarrón (Murcia)