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Dealing With Cat Anxiety

Some stressful situations that can cause cat anxiety for your cat are: being alone in the house, or when visitors to the home, another new pet or family member, moving to a new home, visits to the veterinarian, adjusting to a new environment, and multiple cat households. Unfortunately, when cats suffer from stress and anxiety, they generally communicate it in a very clear way that can really turn humans upside down. One of the real signs that usually tell us is that they are not using the cat litter box.

Cats with separation anxiety don’t howl and bay like dogs and theydon’tchew on doors and windowsills in frantic attempts to escape. Their misery is far less obvious and it sometimes takes a sleuth of an owner to appreciate what is going on. Separation anxiety in cats is a less common phenomenon and typically gives rise to behaviors that are not as destructive as those of a dog suffering from separation anxiety. It is so uncommon in cats that it was not till recently that the disorder was considered to be absent in the feline species.

Separation anxiety is a very distressing condition for pets and their owners. Although it is difficult to treat, the long term benefits of having a happier and healthier pet are well worth the time spent training your pet. Separation anxiety: canine and feline and human beings alike, are all prone to and suffer from active bouts of stress due to environmental, emotional, and physical factors. Such stressful times can not only be harmful to your pet, but also to you as a pet owner.

Cats normally are fastidious groomers and as much as 30 - 50% of their time awake is spent performing some type of grooming behavior. One uncommon sign of cat anxiety may be excessive grooming, to the point of creating a bald spot on one or two areas of the body. Cats may show their distress in other, less obvious ways such as becoming too anxious to eat when left alone; or vomiting only when the owner is not there.

Cats find consistent routines and predictable environments very comforting, so try to keep your cat’s activities on a schedule. Playtimes, mealtimes, and bedtimes should occur at approximately the same time every day. Cats with anxiety related elimination problems also may spray, but do so for other than hormonal reasons. Instead, something in their environment causes them to become anxious. Cats commonly start to manifest their stress or anxiety by what is politely called inappropriate toiletary behavior.

Cats are very sensitive to their owner’s emotions, so if you’re nervous during thunderstorms, your cat probably will be, too. Learning to calm yourself will help both of you. Cats who display this type of behavior generally follow their owners around everywhere, rather than explore the outside world. They may even continue the suckling behavior and chew and suck on their owner’s cloths and even hand.

Cats can be very social animals and they can experience anxiety when they are separated from their owners. Cats like to know when their big cat mom and/or dad are coming and going, so they can adjust their schedules accordingly. If you or your partner takes a new job that drastically changes your household routine and lifestyle, your cat may get seperation anxiety

Aggressive behavior can be sign of stress anxiety. Owners who claim that cat play fighting did not present a problem until the cat was six or seven years old are ignoring one vital fact. Up until that age (middle age in cats) he will have taken his fights elsewhere. When the behavior is exhibited in the owner’s presence, attention can be withdrawn by turning or walking away, or some form of remote indirect punishment not associated with the owner could be used.

Owners should never physically punish their cat; even a harmless tap on the nose may be viewed as a challenge and the cat may become even more aggressive. The most effective reaction to status-induced aggression is to ignore the cat completely.

Ask your veterinarian about giving a tranquilizer to the cat to reduce cat anxiety and possibly help reduce destructive behavior. A comprehensive dietary supplement designed for animals exhibiting nervousness, hyperactivity, anxiety or responding to environmentally induced stress is also available from your veterinarian.

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Treating Fleas in Kittens

When you ask an owner of a cat how she gets rid of fleas from her beloved feline, you will surely receive lots of advice. You will undoubtedly receive a list of flea products that she has tried on her cat as well. However, if you would ask how you can get rid of fleas from your kitten, well, you just might not receive that many pieces of advice.

Kittens, being young, do not really have that strong an immune system yet. Thus, you cannot really use just any product that you would with an adult cat on your young kitten. After all, feline flea products would understandably contain chemicals, and exposure to such chemicals can even result to fatalities for your kitten. Thus, you have to be very wary about this particular scenario.

Of course, you can just choose to leave the fleas on your kitten and just wait for it to grow a bit older so that by then, you can already use flea products on it. This would be the wise thing to do, right? Wrong. In fact, no veterinarian would recommend any cat owner to do this at all. After all, fleas feed on the blood of their host. If this condition is left untreated, it would not take long for your kitten to develop the potentially fatal condition of anemia. Thus, you should not consider just shelving the problem off until your kitten is old enough to handle the chemicals that come with flea products. You still have to do something about the situation.

Since this is the case, then the wise thing to do is to consult your veterinarian. This way, your vet can determine the appropriate flea product that you should use on your kitten. Your vet would have to consider a lot of aspects for this, such as the age of your kitten, its physical size, and the severity of the flea condition. This way, your vet can choose the flea product that would best suit your kitten.

Kitten owners do not really have that many choices of methods to turn to in getting rid of fleas. However, you can also resort to using the flea comb, which is a fine-tooth comb that can brush off fleas from your kitten’s fur. Of course, this can be a bit of a hassle on your part. Just make sure you have a basin of soapy water in which you can drop the fleas so that they would indeed be killed in the process.

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Male Cats’ Sexuality

Tomcats spray urine as a means of chemical communication and to mark their territory. This activity, which may be under taken by both entire and castrated males, should be differentiated from normal micturition and abnormal urination associated with Urinary Tract Infections. When spraying, a cat holds its rump high with the tail erect and the tip of the tail quivers. Treading movements are also often seen as the spray, usually about 1 ml, is sent back onto a vertical surface in short jets. Spraying indoors may be triggered by the presence of rival cats, social upheaval (including home decoration) or the loss of human or animal companions.

Castration of entire males usually diminishes or stops spraying and makes the urine less pungent smelling. It is, however, not universally effective; rates of effectiveness have been reported to be around 78%. The administration of progestagens is sometimes effective in both entire and neutered cats. Medication can be given intermittently or continuously. The mode of action is thought to be through negative feedback on the hypothalamus and through calming effects in the cerebral cortex. The use of sedative or psychoactive drugs may also be of help in the short term, while environmental and behavior modification are introduced.

Cat owners should be discouraged from punishing the tomcat in any way after spraying, since this can exacerbate the situation. On the other hand, if the cat can be caught in the act, direct punishment (a jet of water from a water pistol) or a suitable object that, when thrown, physically disrupts the behavior, can be very effective. Cats caught spraying can also be deterred by an unexpected noise, such as that produced by an alarm or throwing a bunch of keys for example.

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Cat Bathing Steps

Are you someone that bathes their cat at home? It’s not for everyone.

Cats don’t normally need a bath as they do so well at keeping themselves clean. But sometimes they require one for medical reasons and you need to take the plunge or have it done by your vet. Of course, it’s always best to begin giving your cat baths when she’s a kitten. The earlier in life your cat is exposed to the sink for a bath, the easier it will be to bathe her as she grows up. If that time has passed and you decide to take on the task later in life, here are some tips.

First, get all your supplies in order. If you’re bathing as a result of a skin condition, be sure you use a shampoo that’s recommended by your veterinarian.

As we all know, cats love warmth so make sure the room warm. Also, use of a pheromone emitter that plugs in helps to lessen your cat’s anxiety. Whether you’re bathing in a sink or a tub, it’s wise to place a rubber mat on the bottom so your cat doesn’t slip around. It’s already stressful on your cat without you having to keep her upright while bathing. If you bathe your cat in the sink, use of a hand sprayer is best. If you bathe your cat in the bathtub, a removable shower head works best. If you don’t have either of these, then a large plastic cup will do.

If you have two people for the task then one can gently hold the cat at the neck while the other one bathes. If there’s only you, then use of a harness helps. Just attach a leash to the harness and wrap it around the faucet leaving a foot or so lead so your cat doesn’t jump out. Never leave the room when your cat is in a harness. If you’re bathing your cat alone and don’t have a harness, be sure to close off the room. Otherwise, you might have a wet cat running through your house. It’s also wise to dress appropriately. Plan on getting wet and potentially scratched or bitten. Use of rubber gloves helps protect you.

Now for the actual bath. Get the water to a comfortable temperature and then put your cat in. Apply the shampoo starting with the head and going all the way to the tail. Then start lathering in the same direction. Some shampoos say to leave them on for a period of time before rinsing, so be sure to read the directions first. Be sure all the shampoo is rinsed out thoroughly. Shampoo left on the skin can cause skin irritations or be swallowed when your cat licks her fur.

To dry your cat, first squeeze all the water you can from her hair and then use a big fluffy towel to wrap her in. Most cats don’t stand for a blow dryer. It scares them unless you’ve already gotten your cat use to its’ sound and feel. Even then, not all cats will stand for it. Try to comb your cats hair out while still wet if you can. Otherwise, use a comb once she’s settled down.

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