Felines are very sensitive animals. Any agent, internal or external, that disturbs the status quo and forces them to lose control over their territory creates stress and anxiety, but don’t be alarmed. It usually subsides within a few hours or a few days.
However, certain cats are more prone to stress and in these specimens knowing how to relax a cat is more than recommended, as well as consulting with the veterinarian to rule out that there is no physical ailment. The expectation is that they remain nervous and irascible as long as the subject causing that discomfort persists.
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How do I know that my cat is stressed?
There are many symptoms that should alert you to the pressure that your friend is enduring. Your triggers can be internal (for example, a prevalent illness) or external (a move, an unexpected visit, or the arrival of a new pet at your home).
To identify the signs of stress you must pay attention to their body language, their facial expressions and their behavior. In the most severe cases, psychological discomfort can become somatized and lead to pathologies such as cystitis, colitis, bronchial asthma or alopecia. You will know that your pet is stressed if :
- His body hunches over and his hair stands on end.
- His pupils are dilated and his ears and whiskers are drawn back.
- Pull back your lips and growl.
- He avoids your gaze and prefers to isolate himself by hiding.
- Stop eating or vomit frequently.
- He does his business outside the sandbox and marks.
- He scratches the furniture and is hyper.
- He licks compulsively until he hurts himself.
- Swallows paper or sucks on cloth objects.
- Manifests unknown phobias so far.
- It meows continuously.
How to relax a cat through the senses
The simplest and most effective way to make temporary stress disappear from a kitten is by resorting to the stimulation of the senses, with touch and smell having the greatest impact on its well-being. Take note of these 5 infallible practices to relax a cat.
Give him a massage
Make sure they are receptive to receiving you and focus on key areas. That is, the head, cheeks, neck, back and tail. In this order. You should apply light pressure with your fingertips while making circular movements.
In the case of the back and the tail, you should caress them with your outstretched hand, repeating the strokes several times. Altogether, 10-15 minutes of massage will be more than enough to appreciate the improvement.
Use Bach flowers or catnip
Another very valid resource is to appeal to the sense of taste. Offer him his favorite food. Of course, these awards cannot account for more than 10% of your daily caloric intake. Eating will divert your attention to more pleasant aspects and you will begin to relax. You can also pour a few drops of Bach flower on your food or drink.
The catnip or catnip will also serve to reverse their mood and drive toward sociability and euphoria. You can plant his seeds so that when he grows up he can sniff or chew on them, or you can camouflage them among his belongings and toys to encourage him to move and play.
Put music on
In general, classical music is liked by felines. If you provide a quiet space, away from the hustle and bustle of the house, with little light and with a soft bed, it is very likely that he will not be able to resist resting. Using relaxing music will be the perfect complement to achieve your goal.
Use familiarization pheromones
Do you know that the cheeks, the back of the ears and the chin release pheromones when the cat feels comfortable and at peace? Acquiring the synthetic version of these familiarization pheromones is an excellent idea to eradicate the tension in your kitten through smell. You will find them in spray or plug-in format.
Even if you do not appreciate them, they will soon disperse in the environment. Your kitten will begin to lower his tension and reconcile with himself.
Don’t neglect environmental enrichment
By all it is known that the felines adore the heights. From them they can control what happens both inside and outside their home. Thus, if your pet has a cat tree of different heights or a shelf on which to stay placidly, he will have the opportunity to see everything from another perspective.
As happens when we must address the depression or apathy of a pussycat, appealing to its hunting instinct and its need to climb , scratch and jump, we will be able to connect it with its essence, stripping it of discomfort. Likewise, playing in your company will allow him to interact with you and feel loved and relaxed.
Tips to maintain what has been achieved over time
If you perceive that your pet is stressed and you have encouraged to put into practice the tricks that we have just given you, you should take into consideration certain guidelines to consolidate what has been achieved. These are the guidelines with which you will keep your best friend balanced:
- Respect their limits . Let him be the one to initiate contact, never overwhelm him while he sleeps or force situations. First thing in the morning or in the evening, he will be more inclined to play and be caressed.
- Make sure children understand that they shouldn’t disturb him and provide him with an appropriate place to rest and unwind.
- Make time to play with him, especially if he doesn’t have access to the outdoors.
- Do not abuse the edible treats, since, in addition to being overweight, it could manifest gastric disturbances.
Give love and encouragement
In short, deploying these tactics is very likely that your cat feels relaxed. However, if you notice that far from remitting his stress worsens you should go to the vet. It may be necessary to prescribe drugs or consult with an expert in feline behavior, an ethologist.
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