Similar to humans, cats can experience stress at times due to various reasons such as boredom, overstimulation, and environmental changes. While identifying the root cause of your cat’s stress is crucial, using calming aids can help alleviate their anxiety during unavoidable changes in their surroundings.
Dr. Zay Satchu, DVM, co-founder and Chief Veterinary Officer of Bond Vet, suggests that there are different types of products available to ease stress and anxiety in cats, including collars, sprays, treats, and plug-ins. These aids work by releasing calming pheromones or a blend of relaxing herbs such as rosemary, chamomile, and tryptophan.
To find the most effective calming aid for your cat, it’s essential to look for products that contain these ingredients. However, since cats have individual personalities, no single product can work for all cats. Therefore, you may need to experiment with different categories of calming aids to find the one that works best for your feline.
Feliway Classic Cat Calming Diffuser Kit
If you’re considering using a pheromone product, both vets recommend Feliway. Dr. Burch specifically suggests using Feliway pheromone diffusers, which contain synthetic hormones that mimic those produced by mother cats to calm their young. These pheromones can help reduce anxiety by stimulating a cat’s olfactory system.
Feliway is a popular choice among vets and cat parents because it has been clinically proven to reduce scratching and urinating caused by stress in 9 out of 10 cats. Results may be seen in as little as seven days after starting to use the diffuser. For optimal effectiveness, it’s recommended to plug in the diffuser in the room where your cat spends the most time to help them feel comfortable in their environment.
ThunderWunders Cat Calming Chews
ThunderWunders’ Cat Calming Chews contain thiamine, L-tryptophan, and chamomile, which work together to reduce stress and anxiety caused by vet visits, separation, storms, fireworks, and travel. These active ingredients are known to promote relaxation and relieve tension.
– Brand: ThunderWorks
– Package size: 100 chews
– Flavor: Chicken
– Active ingredients: Thiamine, L-tryptophan, and chamomile
– Item weight: 4.8 ounces (136 g)
– Form: Pellet
– Vet recommended: Yes
– Recommended use: Anxiety
– Ratings: 4.8 out of 5
VetriScience Laboratories Composure, Calming Formula for Cats
Containing a blend of calming ingredients such as C3 colostrum, L-Theanine, and Thiamine, these treats have been designed to promote cognitive function, encourage dopamine production, and aid the central nervous system. VetriScience claims that results can be seen within 20-30 minutes of consumption. With a delicious chicken liver flavor and chewy texture, many cats seem to enjoy these treats according to customer reviews. However, reviews are inconsistent with some customers claiming that the treats are a miraculous solution to stress, while others say that they have little effect on their cats’ anxiety. Although a vet-formulated product, customer satisfaction is mixed.
Feliway Cat Stress Relief – Easiest to Use
This Feliway product is a comprehensive solution for various cat-related stress issues, such as anxiety, tension, conflicts, urine spraying, and scratching. It is an all-in-one calming solution that eliminates the need for multiple products.
Feliway has an impressive satisfaction rate of 9.1/10 and is highly recommended by vets. It is entirely drug-free and more effective than conventional calming products. The diffuser can cover an area of up to 700 sq ft, which is perfect for the places where your cat spends most of its time. With six refills, each lasting a month, this stress relief is ideal for busy pet parents.
– 93% success rate
– Portable and travel-friendly
– No need for owner administration
– Cannot be used with a different diffuser
Pet Naturals Calming Cat Chews – Best Value
The Pet Naturals Calming Cat Chews offer a cost-effective solution for cat owners dealing with stressed felines. Designed by veterinarians, these treats contain natural ingredients that can be easily incorporated into your pet’s diet. They effectively reduce destructive or aggressive behavior without causing drowsiness. While the recommended serving is one treat per day, you can increase the dosage up to triple for highly anxious cats. However, keep in mind that this may impact the affordability of this option.
– Formulated by veterinarians
– Helps manage behavioral issues
– Meets the standards of the National Animal Supplement Council (NASC)
– Some cats may not like the taste
– May not be as cost-effective if used daily
What to Look for in Cat Calming Treats
To help your cat feel less anxious or worried, there are several things you can do. One option is to provide them with cat calming treats. When choosing a relaxing treat for your cat, there are several factors to consider, including palatability, flavor, active ingredients, purpose, and feeding frequency.
Palatability is crucial, as your cat must be willing to eat the treats for them to be effective. Consider your cat’s preferences when selecting the flavor, texture, and form of the treats. Soft chews are the most common type of calming treat and are usually well-liked by cats.
Active ingredients are also essential when selecting calming treats. Look for natural ingredients that have been shown to reduce anxiety, such as chamomile, thiamine, L-tryptophan, and L-theanine. These ingredients work together to provide a synergistic effect that can be more effective than any one ingredient alone.
Consider the purpose of the treats as well. Calming treats can be helpful in a variety of situations, such as vet visits, grooming trips, thunderstorms, fireworks, or the arrival of a new pet. Be sure to follow the feeding frequency guidelines on the label and increase the dosage if necessary.
In summary, selecting the right cat calming treats can help reduce your cat’s anxiety and make them feel more comfortable in stressful situations. Consider your cat’s preferences and the active ingredients in the treats to ensure the best results.
Q. Will hemp oil or CBD oil relax my cat?
A. It’s becoming more accepted to give cats hemp oil or CBD oil to calm them down. The two oils come from the same plant, neither is psychoactive, yet they are very different. Hemp oil comes from the hemp plant’s seeds and does not have any CBD in it. CBD oil is extracted from other parts of the hemp plant and there’s no THC in it to get your pet high. You probably won’t get much help from the veterinary community regarding these products due to legal issues in some states. You’ll find plenty of products to try online, especially hemp oil for pets, if you choose to go this route. If you’re considering giving your pet hemp oil for anxiety, consider the quality control and dosing of the product. Hemp oil should be given in the recommended dosage in food. Though it’s extremely rare to give your cat too much hemp oil, scour the directions so you know the correct dosage to give your pet. As long as it’s odorless, you have a good chance of getting it into your kitty’s belly.
Q. Can I reduce my indoor cat’s anxiety in ways that don’t involve any products?
A. Yes, you can train and play with your cat to reduce anxiety. An indoor cat needs more playtime than an outdoor cat that naturally burns off energy. If you train an anxious cat, use a clicker and always offer positive feedback and interaction. Other cats love to train with ordinary treats. Playtime uses up the excess energy that makes a cat anxious, and you’ll also create a stronger bond that helps to reduce fear and anxiety.
Q. What are pheromones and how do they calm cats?
A. Pheromone products may be a solution to your cat’s unwanted behaviors, fears, and anxieties, but why? Pheromones are chemical signals naturally produced by cats (and every other species) that cause specific responses from others of the same species. Some pheromones can signal cats to become alarmed, aroused, bonded, anxious, and calm. The right pheromones can calm your cat down. Synthetic pheromones, such as those produced by nursing mother cats or facial pheromones that they rub and release on surfaces when they feel relaxed in an environment, are used in calming products to make a cat feel safe and secure.