As humans, stress is something that we’re used to, whether it’s from a long day at work, or because of a particular issue or problem, stress is a horrible feeling that can lead to some serious health issues if it persists.
But did you know that it’s actually possible for cats to feel stress too?
That’s right, as carefree as our feline friends might seem, they too can become stressed due to a variety of different issues, and much like us humans, chronic stress can lead to some quite severe health issues in cats, which is why it is so important to be able to identify the signs of it so early on.
Perhaps the most common question about stress and cats is if it is possible for a cat to die from stress.
So, if you want to know more about cats and the effects stress can have on them, including if it is possible for them to die from stress, then read on, and we’ll provide you with all of the information you need to know.
What Are The Signs Of Stress In A Cat?
As a cat owner, you’ll know how hard it is sometimes when it comes to trying to figure out exactly how your cat is feeling, as they’re often quite hard animals to decipher. Despite this, however, there are some telltale signs that your cat is stressed, so if you notice any of these signs, you should seek help immediately!
One of the most common signs of a stressed cat is urine spraying, which can be a sign that your cat doesn’t feel safe or secure in their home, which is always going to stress them out.
If your cat is excessively self-grooming, or experiencing significant hair loss, then this can also be a sign of a stressed cat too. They might be self-grooming too much due to an infection or because of parasites, such as fleas. So this is definitely a sign that something is wrong with your cat.
If your cat has become particularly aggressive, then there’s a chance that it might be stressed. Much like us humans, cats that are stressed have a tendency to act out, which not only leads to aggression but also an increased amount of vocalization too, which means these signs aren’t to be ignored.
Alterations to your cat’s appetite are another potential sign of stress, so if your cat is eating a lot more food than usual, or has stopped eating their food, then you should definitely consider seeking advice.
Changes to your cat’s general behavior aren’t to be ignored either, and if you’ve had your cat for a long time you’ll know how they usually act, so anything out of the ordinary should be monitored.
Finally, the last sign that your cat might be suffering from stress is if they begin to eliminate outside of its litter tray.
This could be due to a number of things, but the stress caused by a medical issue is a common reason for your cat to begin eliminating outside of their tray, so you should consider seeking help as soon as possible if this is the case.
Can A Cat Die Because Of Stress?
Whilst there’s no possible way of ensuring that your cat’s life is entirely stress-free, stress can have an extremely negative effect on your cat, especially if it is stressed out on a regular basis.
Like humans, chronic stress can lead to severe health issues in your feline friend, such as diarrhoea, balding, a decrease in the immune system, and a dramatic decrease in appetite, all of which can ultimately lead to your cat dying.
As you can see then, it is extremely important that you take notice if your cat is displaying signs of stress, but what should you do if you notice that your cat is stressed out?
How To Help A Stressed Cat
The first way that you can begin to relieve your stressed cat is by identifying the problem, it could be anything, from a change of location (e.g. moving house), loss of a family member (human or animal!), the introduction of a new pet, or other changes to their environment.
From there, you can begin to figure out how to best help your feline friend relax. If you plan on redecorating or making dramatic changes to your home, do so over a prolonged period of time, as it will allow your cat to adjust better.
Introducing a new pet should be done extremely slowly, and you should give your cat plenty of time to interact with them before introducing them fully.
Ultimately, the best way to help relieve a stressed cat is to show them plenty of love and affection. It will help reassure your cat that things will be okay, so make sure that you pet them, brush them, or even just have them on your lap if you notice that they’re slightly stressed out.
If you’re struggling to identify what is causing your cat to be stressed, then you can consult an animal behaviorist, who will schedule a visit to see if they can help you to identify what is wrong with your feline friend.
However, if there’s nothing in your home that will lead your cat to be stressed, and you think your cat’s stress is due to a medical issue, then it’s always smart to schedule a visit with your local veterinarian, who will be able to provide a full check-up of your cat and identify any possible issues that might be causing your cat any stress.
To summarize, stress in cats can be caused by a large number of things, and stress can have a detrimental effect on your cat’s health, resulting in death if left unresolved, so always try to relax your cat!
At Love4Cats, our practice involves consistent collaboration with licensed veterinarians and reputable industry experts. However, it's important to note that the content provided on Excited Cats is not intended as veterinary advice. While we strive to enhance your understanding of feline care, the information presented on this blog should not replace professional veterinary guidance.