How to Tell When Your Cat is Suffering From Stress

Cat

Stress not only affects humans, it also affects animals such as cats.  In felines, a little bit of stress is needed in order to help them survive different situations in life.  But too much stress is not good.  When a cat is often exposed to stressful situations, their immune system weakens which can lead to health problems such as depression and other behavior issues. Just like humans when a cat feels threatened, their cortisol level increases.  Cortisol causes felines to respond to the situation vigilantly as well.  Short term or infrequent exposure to stress can be beneficial.  But long-term stress is something you need to be concerned.  Below are some of the signs that can help you tell if your cat is suffering from stress.

Litter Box Problem

This is a common problem in cats.  There are a few reasons that can cause them to eliminate outside the litter box.  In this problem the usual causes of their stress are: dirty litter box, changes in the household, relationship issue with other members of the family and medical problems.

Your Cat Is Too Clingy

When you notice your cat is being too clingy it could be a sign that he/she is under a lot of stress.  Common stressors include a loss of a family member and changes such as a new animal has joined the family.

Appetite Change

Stress can cause a major change in your cat’s appetite.  A stressed feline’s will either eat too much or eat very little.

Hiding

Some cats don’t know how to confront new situations such as a new baby in the family, some construction work around the house, new family pet and even redecorating the house.  These situations can cause stress and anxiety to some felines, which can lead them to be withdrawn to people and go hide in the closets or under a bed.

Changes In The Way They Communicate

When you noticed a major change in your cat’s way of communication it could be because he/she is stressed.  So if your normally talker cat suddenly became a very quiet feline, you need to get them checked out by the vet soon.

Your Cat Is Aggressive and Jumpy

When your feline friend acts out quite often it could be because he/she is under some kind of stress.  Some cats will resort to acting out or being aggressive towards other cats or pets around the house as a way to vent their feelings.  On the other hand, some cats become very anxious jumpy even with the slightest noise they hear.  This behavior is a result of a traumatic event.

Image via malfet at Flickr.com

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