15 Signs That Your Cat could be Stressed
Written by Jane Pettitt in Cats
Though we are a Maine Coon site, stress may be a serious issue for any cat which is why this text isn’t specific to our featured breed.
Just like us, cats can experience feelings of stress which may cause them to suffer severe internal turmoil.
As owners, we should always learn to acknowledge the signs then alleviate the underlying cause, especially if the cause may be a health issue.
If a cat suffers from stress for any length of your time it can have a significant effect on its overall health and wellbeing.
Cats are quite good at masking stress and a few of the clues are quite subtle. So here are 14 signs that your cat could be stressed for you to observe out for and influence, especially if they manifest suddenly.
- Spraying or Eliminating Outside of The Litter Box
Stressed cats are known to avoid using their litter boxes. So if your cat who usually uses the box all of the time suddenly goes elsewhere then stress could rather be the cause.
Spraying or urinating around your house is a sure sign that each one isn’t well. If your cat hasn’t been neutered or spayed this could be the time to talk to your vet about having ‘the operation’.
However, if your cat has already been fixed there’ll be another explanation for this unsociable habit.
It may be feeling the urge to mark its territory because it’s noticed a wierd cat through a window but on some occasions, it’s going to have developed a UTI (urinary tract infection).
So if it becomes quite a one-off occurrence, be careful about a visiting feline and also visit your vet for a check-up.
If your cat begins to defecate outside of its litter box this might be for a spread of reasons. during a multi-cat household, another cat using the box first can put the second cat off using it.
Or it might be your cat is struggling to enter the box thanks to adulthood or an injury, or doesn’t just like the position of the box. If you’ve recently moved it, move it back or try a special new position if necessary.
Keeping the Litter box as clean as possible helps. Having a minimum of two litter boxes during a multi-cat household is additionally an honest idea.
If you’re not a lover of litter boxes and don’t relish the thought of getting quite one in your home, try a hidden one like this.
Cats do love a quiet spot out of sight sometimes but if your cat is suddenly hiding tons more and doesn’t emerge once you attempt to coax it out, stress might be a major factor.
If you’ve got recently introduced a replacement pet into the household this might be the cause.
Sometimes older cats hide due to an imagined danger brought on by the onset of Feline Cognitive Dysfunction (FCD).
If the hiding carries on for quite at some point, you ought to take your cat to the vet for an examination.
- Excessive Grooming
Most cats groom themselves a couple of times each day but to not the purpose that they remove excessive amounts of fur.
If your cat seems to be grooming non-stop and particularly if bald spots start appearing then something is probably going to be causing it to feel stressed.
Sometimes it’s a replacement pet that’s causing your cat to experience feelings of insecurity and you’ll need to work on settling your existing cat.
Do this as soon as possible as your cat could get into an excessive grooming habit that’s had to interrupt .
Your cat could even have a medical condition causing a skin irritation so a visit to the vets could also be necessary.
- Excessive Shedding
If you notice tons more of your cat’s fur shedding than you’d expect for the time of year, stress could certainly be a contributing factor.
Consider if something in your cat’s environment is causing it to worry and check out to eliminate this trigger.
Excessive shedding also can be caused by poor diet, an infection, or an allergy so it’s advisable to hunt the opinion of your vet.
- Change in Sleeping Habits
Cats can quite happily sleep for up to 18 hours a day . this is often commonplace behavior.
If your cat suddenly starts to sleep much more than usual, it might be a victim of stress. Loneliness and tedium could be the cause so attempt to play with and interact together with your cat tons more to alleviate these feelings.
Provide it with many toys and scratching posts to complement its environment. I really like this ultimate PetFusion scratching lounger.
It has almost 6,0000 5-star reviews, looks stylish and is great value for money. you’ll even buy a couple of and wall mount them to form a fun climbing and scratching wall that any cat would love.
I play and interaction doesn’t change your cat’s lazy habits, take a visit to the vets for a checkup.
If your cat is sleeping noticeably but usual, this is often also a stress signal. Restlessness and therefore the inability to relax mean something might be worrying your cat.
Sometimes cats prefer to roll in the hay with their owners and it helps to know why they develop this habit too.
- Decreased Appetite or Loss of Appetite
It is worrying when cats stop eating because they will dehydrate so quickly thanks to the very fact that they get tons of their fluids from their food (assuming they aren’t on a dry–food–only diet).
Just like we lose our appetites once we feel nervous about an exam or a driving test, cats can lose theirs once they feel stressed.
So if you notice your cat is barely eating or stops eating altogether ask yourself if anything in its environment might be making it feel stressed and check out to eliminate the matter.
This isn’t always easy, especially if the cause may be a new household pet.
- General Lethargy
If your cat becomes unusually lazy and reluctant to play or move that much, then stress might be the culprit.
Lethargy could also be a common stress symptom and tedium may be the difficulty. Again, an enriched environment and play is that the key to curing this sort of stress.
A Cat Charmer is one of the simplest toys for any cat. Here’s a link to a superb example on Amazon. it’s thousands of positive reviews from satisfied customers and is great value for money.
- Excessive Vocalizing
If your cat meows, howls, or ‘talks’ much more than usual, especially when it can’t see you, then notice as something could also be wrong.
In older cats, memory problems can cause this sort of behavior. Being alone within the dark can cause cats to feel disorientated and stressed.
Consider using dawn till dusk night lights that plug into wall power sockets. There are many available on Amazon and here’s a link to a well-liked example.
They are perfect for ensuring that your cat isn’t left completely within the dark and is cheap to run too.
If your cat is vocalizing and seems in pain or ill, don’t take any chances and go straight to the vets.
If excessive vocalization continues for a couple of days then albeit there are not any obvious symptoms of illness, take your cat for a general checkup.
- Increased Aggression
If your cat becomes aggressive or shows a rise in its usual aggression level towards people or other household pets, then stress could be responsible.
Quite often the aggression isn’t directed at the explanation for the strain. Pain from an injury or an illness could also be causing this unwanted behavior so don’t ignore it.
Check your cat carefully for signs of an injury or anything unusual – a visit to the vets could be on the cards.
- Skittish and Nervous Behavior
Stress can make a cat jumpy and nervous around people it’s usually comfortable with.
If your cat is suddenly more easily startled and runs a mile once you enter the space, then something is worrying it. As usual, attempt to eliminate the cause if it’s obvious – it’d not be.
A pet camera could be worth investing in because it will capture events that occur once you are far away from the house – you would possibly discover what’s upsetting your cat. Here’s one on Amazon that’s highly recommended.
You may notice your cat gets the zoomies if it’s feeling anxious.
- High Heartrate
Stress can cause an elevated pulse in cats. So if your cat’s pulse is high (over 220 bpm when it’s resting) then stress or another medical condition might be the cause.
You can measure your cat’s heartbeat by placing one fork over its left side, just behind its front leg.
Count the number of beats in 15 seconds and multiply by four to urge the guts rate in beats per minute (bpm).
If your cat’s heart is over 220 bpm and resting doesn’t lower it, don’t take any chances – go straight to your vets.
- Dilated Pupils
A cat’s pupils increase and reduce in size consistent with the quantity of sunshine.
If your cat is in broad daylight yet its pupils are oversized, this is often a symbol it’s feeling stressed, and very often this sort of stress is caused by pain.
Keep an eye fixed on your cat and if its pupils don’t reduce fairly quickly you ought to attend the vets.
- Tail Tucked Down Between Legs
A confident and happy cat holds its tail high. A stressed cat often holds its tail down low, tucked between its legs.
- Diarrhea or Constipation
Stress caused by a change in your cat’s environment can often cause changes to bowel movements.
So if you notice your cat has diarrhea or constipation for quite each day there’s an opportunity your cat is feeling stressed.
If you’ve just moved house or rearranged the furniture in your current home this might be the cause. If your cat doesn’t settle within a couple of days, speak to your vet for advice.
-15. Excessive Scratching
Cats scratch if they need fleas or skin conditions but stress also can cause them to scratch excessively for no obvious reason.
If your cat is freed from fleas and has no other obvious skin complaint then it might be feeling stressed and you’ll get to determine why.
As you’ll see, stress can happen in some ways in cats – some quite subtle and a few much more obvious. Now you recognize what could be a symbol of stress the harder task you face is the way to remove the cause.
Some easy thing to see are:
.Your cat’s environment. confirm your cat has many toys and stimulation. Boredom is high on the list of causes of stress.
.Company. Loneliness may be a huge contributing factor to worry.
.Illness and general health. Poorly cats and cats in pain will show signs of stress.
.Household disharmony. Family arguments or new pets it doesn’t feel comfortable can cause your cat to suddenly feel stressed in what it once considered its safe and happy home.