Feliway: Stress-Busting for Cats

Learn about what Feliway is and how it helps cats.

It may surprise you to learn that cats can and do suffer from stress. In fact, it's a pretty common condition for indoor cats to deal with.

Stress causes cats to engage in behaviors that are undesirable for the people who live with them or themselves, including:

So, it's important to understand stress in cats and know how to combat it.

What Causes Stress in Cats?

Cats get stressed out for many reasons, and it's not always immediately apparent what's causing an individual to be stressed. Start with this list of stress-inducers in cats, going through them one by one to determine if it could be going on in your home.

  • A medical condition
  • Strife with other pets in the home
  • Changed schedule of humans in the home
  • Loss of pet or human family member
  • New pet or person in the home
  • Sustained loud noises
  • Home redecorating or remodeling
  • Outdoor cat hanging around
  • Boredom or lack of stimulation
  • Not enough resources for cats in the home to share

The last one on the list, not enough resources, occurs when there are limited food and water stations, clean litter boxes, scratching posts, cozy cat beds, and/or interactive playtime with humans for the number of cats in the home.

How Can Feliway Help to Combat Stress in Cats?

Feliway is a substance that mimics the pheromones cats produce to induce calmness. When your cat rubs his or her face on things, they are rubbing that pheromone on them. Feliway can help calm a stressed cat.

Feliway comes in a spray, which you can use at cat-nose level around the home. It's also available in a diffuser, which you can plug in at intervals around the house. Additionally, there is a multi-cat variety, which mimics a mother cat's pheromone that calms her kittens and is excellent when you have more than one cat.

Other Ways to Fight Stress in Cats

Along with using Feliway, here are some other things to help keep your kitties calm and happy.

  • Be sure you're spending time playing interactively with each one daily. Use a wand toy to mimic prey, so your cat can act like the hunter his instincts tell him he is.
  • Increase the cat resources in your multi-cat home. Make sure there are plenty of food and water stations, toys, scratching posts, cozy cat beds, and clean litter boxes for everyone.
  • Play classical music. Classical music has been shown to calm cats.
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