When to use:
Cats are happy by nature but, just like us, they can get stressed. The good news is cats are perfectly designed to deal with short-term stress. So when your cat finds himself having to escape from the neighbour’s dog, he is perfectly adapted.
However, in the modern world, a cat’s stress response can find itself ‘turned on’ frequently, or for long periods. Recurrent or ongoing stress affects the balanced functioning of the mind and body, and can manifest in anxiety, tension and stress-related behaviours or illness.
Cats are individuals, and can get stressed for different reasons, and manifest their stress in different ways. Here is a list of stressors that many cats find challenging, and some common ways cats express their stressed state.
Common feline stressors:
- moving house
- no or limited outside access
- vet visit
- cattery stays
- loud noises
- cage rest
- long-term illness
- other neighbourhood cats
- new family members
- home renovations
- unfriendly relationships
- cat shows
- lack of exercise and play
- lack of companionship
Common ways cats manifest stress:
- anxiety, nervousness, timidity
- tension, irritability, aggression
- inappropriate elimination (spraying and marking)
- compulsive behaviours (stereotypes) – e.g. over-grooming, tail chasing
- nervous digestion (indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome) – e.g. poor appetite, loose stools, gas
- bladder inflammation (cystitis) skin complaints – e.g. allergies
- slow healing
Words of Wisdom:
If you are concerned about your cat’s well-being, or are unsure as to the cause of certain symptoms or behaviours, then consult your family vet. Cats that are stressed always have a good reason. The help of an animal behaviourist, or your family veterinary team, will be very helpful in identifying potential stressors and suggesting changes and additional support. For best results, combine with other strategies that help cats meet their needs, feel calm and relaxed, and experience their natural well-being.
How it works:
Here is Taz being given a pinch of Happy Cat Stressfree and enjoying what we call the Happy Cat Response. You will see from the video there are two aspects to a cat’s response to Happy Cat Stressfree - attraction and relaxation.
Happy Cat Stressfree contains a natural feline attractant that cats like. Most cats (around 70% it seems) are naturally attracted to Happy Cat Stressfree. Cats typically show a series of behaviours including sniffing, licking, nibbling and then rubbing, rolling. This initial, attractive phase may last a few minutes and then cats settle down for the next phase. This attractive quality of Happy Cat Stressfree makes it easy to use and useful to enrich a cats environment, facilitate play and support new learning.
By smelling and eating the Happy Cat Stressfree, cats also get to experience the relaxation aspect. Happy Cat Stressfree helps cats to relax, mind and body, supporting the action of GABA, a chemical in the brain (neurotransmitter) responsible for relaxing the nervous system. This relaxing quality means Happy Cat Stressfree can play a useful role in helping to ease anxiety, promote relaxation, and relieve a variety of stress-related disorders commonly seen in cats.
Kittens under 3 – 6 months old may not respond to Happy Cat Stressfree as their nervous system is yet to fully mature. We are, however, aware of exceptions.
How to use:
Helping to support a cat’s natural ability to be relaxed and happy is a rewarding process. Use Happy Cat Stressfree as an aid in that process.
There are two simple ways to use Happy Cat Stressfree:
- sprinkle on ground – for those cats that like Happy Cat Stressfree
- mix with food – for those cats that do not find Happy Cat Stressfree naturally attractive
For unhappy cats use 1 pinch up to 3 times a day if necessary. For happy cats use 1 pinch a day as needed to enrich their environment and promote well-being.
Sprinkle on the ground - Find in a quiet, warm place that your cat likes, or where he/she feels safe and secure. Sprinkle a pinch of Happy Cat Stressfree on the ground or blanket. Find yourself a seat and just observe what happens. Cats that like Happy Cat Stressfree may sniff, lick, nibble, rub and roll for a few minutes and then go on to feel more calm and relaxed. We call this the Happy Cat Response.
Mix with food - Cats that are not naturally attracted to Happy Cat Stressfree can still benefit from its relaxing effects by adding a pinch to their food up to 3 times a day. Adding Happy Cat Stressfree to the food is also useful for cats that do like it but where it is important to ensure maximum benefit from the relaxation effect. Most cats will happily take Happy Cat Stressfreee if added to their favourite wet foods or treat. If necessary, start by adding just a small pinch. Sensitive cats may require very little for effect.
Happy Cat Stressfree contains Valerian, which is generally considered a safe herb for cats. However, if your cat is pregnant, lactating, on medication or undergoing surgery, consult your veterinarian before using Happy Cat Stressfree.
Valerian may interact with drugs with similar mechanisms of action, and caution is advised when using Happy Cat Stressfree with these drugs (i.e. sedatives, anaesthetics).