How to know if your cat is depressed – Your cat, usually independent and indifferent, has for some time been showing unusual behavior that worries you. Be aware that a lack of drive, intensive licking or insomnia can be a sign of impending depression in the feline.
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NATTARIN KRAIWACHIRASIT / SHUTTERSTOCK
Jerky movements of the tail
It is first with his tail that the cat expresses his annoyance. The tail of a kitty happy with its fate moves smoothly, like a feather duster, while that of a sad and depressed cat whipped by dry blows, says Danielle Bernal, veterinarian for Wellness products.
Conduct your little investigation to determine the cause of his discomfort.”Cats stick to their habits and do not like change,” she says. Start by addressing any recent changes. “
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Sudden change in emotional behavior
The cat has the reputation of being distant, independent and capricious.But each cat has its own personality, and according to Dr. Bernal, you should pay attention to your cat’s mood changes. “A lot of cat owners talk about how their pet snuggles up on their knees, just make them small beaks in the morning, making them an ideal companion. But if this behavior changes, do not say that after all, it’s the nature of the cat. This can be the first sign of a depression. The personality of your cat depends primarily on his race.
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Claw shots on your hand
What cat did not use this sneaky claw to mark his discontent! “When your feline friend gets his claws out in a brief fit of frustration, you can infer that he has a downward spiral,” says Dr. Bernal.
However, we must not conclude that he has a grumpy temperament or that he is a chronic depressed: he simply goes through a bad pass. Treat him like a sulky child. Nothing reassures a cat as much as spending more time with you. “
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Kitty climbs everywhere
Unlike humans, cats can actually climb walls (and down) when they are upset.This undesirable behavior, especially when the animal has been properly educated to follow the rules of the house, can also be a sign of depression.
This drop in morale can be caused by boredom, observes Dr. Bernal. “Make sure your cat does not miss stimulation. Your house must look inviting for a cat, with cat toys, a cat tree, a cozy basket, a scratching pole. Having your own space, where you can nap or play, allows the cat to feel part of the household. “
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Kitty languishes at the window
It’s clear: your cat is bored with your presence. And it can turn into stress of separation if you leave it too often alone. “It’s all too often thought that cats are indifferent to humans, but in fact they want to bond with their master,” says Brian Ogle, assistant professor of anthropozoology at Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida.
And often, humans do not bother to interact enough with their cat because they say it’s useless. Regular play with your cat helps to strengthen the human-feline bond. And it’s win-win: everyone feels more relaxed afterwards. “
By the way, sleeping with your cat is a habit not to take.
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Feces deposited in the wrong places
If your cat defecates other than litter, it can be a sign of a health problem, a reaction to a situation or a depressive state. It is essential to react in a positive way (even if setting foot on a fresh cat poop is the last thing you want). Check that it is not a symptom of a serious illness.
“Cats are solitary animals,” says Brian Ogle. They do not have the cognitive ability to interpret subtle social cues or to make the connection between the punishment and the behavior that caused it. Use positive reinforcement instead and make sure that the animal’s litter is always clean and easily accessible. “
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Not showing Any Affection
Avoiding the company of people is not necessarily a sign of depression in your cat, but it may be the case if he deliberately turns his back on you and ignores you, says Kelly Hayes-Raitt, specialist in feline behavior and author of a book on the subject. Not always easy to understand the signals your cat sends you.
“When my cat did not like the man I was dating, he would sit in a corner facing the wall, and would not even look at me. It was an obvious sign that he was unhappy. “His solution: do not force the cat to communicate. “Your cat will get to know newcomers when he’s ready.
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Spittle and whistling
We know the stereotype of the furious mad cat: he hisses and spits, his back arched, all claws out. But it’s not so much a show of anger as a way to show you his frustration. “I choose to deliberately ignore this behavior,” says Kelly Hayes-Raitt. I leave my cat alone where he sleeps and after a while, he will accept my presence without aggression.
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Furnishings turned into a scratching post
If your cat does not usually behave like a Terminator towards the furniture, but has recently started tearing the curtains, he may be suffering from transient stress, and a worried human may confuse that with the Depression, says Karen Miura, specialist in animal communication.
She recommends using a diffuser or a pheromone spray that will have a calming effect on your little companion.
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Watering walls (Pee)
The cat is a very territorial animal and he considers your house and his court as his own kingdom. When someone “invades” their space, says Karen Miura, it undermines her morale. “The marks of claws on the furniture, the jets of urine on the walls are ways to mark his territory to discourage intruders. And the intruder may as well be a mouse in a closet that a change in his daily routine.
If the return to the status quo is impossible (you are not going to put your new baby out of the house to please Minou), try to preserve the best possible habits of your cat.
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Lamentations for no apparent reason
Your furry friend may not speak French, but he has a repertoire of vocalizations to express his emotions.A sad cat will not necessarily speak with a pitiful meowing. It is rather by excessive meowing that he will express his stress, his loneliness or his need for attention because he feels sick.
If your cat does not look good on his plate, let him have some new toys to distract you in your absence, and give him more hugs on your return.