Cat Stress: Treatments & Causes

sad cat

Cats can have issues with stress just like people.

If you own a cat or want to get one, it is important that you know some of the causes of feline stress.

In this article, we will also explore various treatments that can help keep your kitty calm.

What Causes Cats to become Stressed?

There are lots of possible reasons that your cat is experiencing stress. The more you learn about these reasons, the easier it will be for you to help them.

1. Too Many Other Pets

Cats often become stressed out and jealous in households where there are other cats or other animals. They can easily get frustrated trying to get your attention when there are numerous other pets around.

It is especially common for cats to feel stressed when they are sharing a litter box and other things with other kitties. These animals can be quite finicky when it comes to having these types of things all to themselves.

2. Loud Noises

Persistent loud noises can definitely cause cats to stress out. If you are doing remodeling work in your home, it is important that you are aware of your cat. Even the sound of a noisy blender can send your cat spiraling into a state of anxiety.

It might seem like nothing bothers your cat, but loud noises cause pretty much all of these animals to become worked up to some degree. You’ll want to make a point of keeping the inside of your home as calm as possible each day.

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3. A Missing Pet

If a certain pet of yours dies or suddenly goes missing, your cat could become extremely stressed and even depressed. These animals often form strong bonds with other animals in the house. If one of these animals disappears, your cat could react in a very negative way.

4. Being Bored

Boredom is a common source of stress and anxiety among both cats and dogs. Some of these animals require more stimulation than others, but you cannot neglect them. If your cat isn’t receiving an adequate amount of attention, they might start acting out.

You may not think of cats as even being capable of experiencing boredom, but you can rest assured that they do. This is why it is so important that you spend a good amount of time with your feline friend on a regular basis.

stressed cat

Recognizing the Signs

It is imperative that you are able to recognize the signs of stress in your cat. There are many different ways that stress can manifest in these animals.

Some of the common symptoms of stress in cats include:

  • Excessive self-grooming
  • Attempting to escape
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Not using their litter box
  • Lethargic behavior
  • Hiding away more than usual
  • Being very clingy

All of these signs can indicate a stressed cat, so you will need to take them seriously. When you know what to look for, you will be able to take the appropriate measures.

Treatments for a Stressed Cat

You will have a lot of different methods to choose from when it comes to reducing your cat’s stress levels. While not all of these methods will work with your cat, you still need to know what your options are.

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1. Make sure your cat has lots of toys

You might be surprised as to just how much of a difference some fun toys will make with regards to your cat’s overall mental health. It is also a good idea to make sure they have a scratching post.

Cats love playing with toys because it allows them to express their natural animal instincts. If your cat is not able to do this, they’ll likely become stressed out. There’s also a good chance that they will start chewing on things in your house that you don’t want them to.

2. Keep it Calm

As we mentioned above, it is also very important that you do your best to maintain a calm and relaxed environment at home. Loud noises can be extremely unsettling and nerve racking for cats, so you need to keep this in mind.

If you are going to run the vacuum or make any loud noises, you should consider temporarily putting your cat outside or in another part of the house.

cat yoga

3. Make Time for Playtime

You also need to make a point of playing with your cat on a regular basis. If they are feeling neglected at all, they are likely to get stressed and anxious. This can lead to all sorts of unpleasant acting out behaviors. Make sure that you find at least an hour or so each day to spend playing with your kitty.

4. Slow Transitions

If you are planning to make any big changes that will affect your cat’s routine or environment, you should try to do so slowly. The fact is that these animals don’t do very well with big and sudden changes.

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Whether you are going to introduce a new pet to the household or make some other change, it’s important to make the transition gradually. This will greatly reduce the chances of your cat getting majorly stressed out.


  • If there are lots of other pets in your household, your cat could become stressed. It might get overwhelmed by feeling as though it needs to compete for your attention.
  • When a pet of yours dies or disappears suddenly from the household, your cat could become stressed.
  • A bored cat can start to feel very stressed anxious, which is why you need to play with yours on a daily basis.
  • Sudden loud noises can play havoc with your cat’s nerves, so you should try to keep your home as calm as possible.
  • Make sure that your cat has a decent amount of fun toys to play with. This will keep them from becoming bored easily.
  • If you are going to make any major change to your cat’s routine, you should do so gradually.
  • Some of the signs of a stressed cat include lack of appetite, lethargy, diarrhea and hiding away most of the time.
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