We all love our little furry feline friends and it can be devastating when they’re ill. Not being a vet, it can be difficult to know if something is wrong with them and so we need to try and work out if there’s something not quite right.
Stress is one that is particularly difficult to diagnose in any animal but it can be really problematic for cats in the long term. Not all stress is bad however, and cats can deal with short term stress problems just as we can, but there are longer term stress issues that should be addressed to make your Cats life more happy.
Causes of stress can include:
· Rivalries with other cats
· A new cat moving into the area
· Moving to a new home
· Trips to the vets (this blog has some good advice on that)
· Death in the family
There are many more things that can cause stress in cats but those are some of the more common ones. There are more causes listed here.
Here are some of the symptoms to watch out for:
· Urinating outside their litter box – you might think they’re just being naughty but they’re doing it for a reason.
· Digestive and stomach problems – they might have just eaten something a little dodgy but if it continues then take them to the vet.
· Excessive scratching or grooming – When in distress, cats may have compulsive traits such as scratching or licking which, when done too much, can cause real problems.
· Isolating themselves – if your cat is actively isolating themselves to be away from people then there could be a problem.
· Increase or decrease in eating – This is all down to their normal eating habits. Pay attention if they start to eat a lot more or less than normal.
· Extra aggression towards humans or other animals
· Sleeping more often – cats sleep a lot anyway, so it might be difficult notice this but if they’re spending most of their time asleep it might be time for a trip to the vet.
· Meowing more – this is only really an issue if your cat is normally quiet but has suddenly started becoming more vocal.
Again, these are only some of the symptoms but ones that you’re most likely to recognise. What’s important to recognise is if there is a change in their normal behaviour. If you notice them doing something that is out of character then it could be a sign that something is wrong.
The best way to deal with stress in cats is to remove the cause of stress, although of course that isn’t possible, especially if the cause is something like moving house. The stress will disappear over time for some of the causes, but you can also purchase stress relieving products or get something from the vet to help in the meantime.
Just keep an eye on your cat; they can’t tell you what’s wrong so it’s up to you to notice!