How to Deal With Separation Anxiety in Cats
Separation anxiety in cats is common, but can be hard to notice. For instance, your cat may refuse to eat, vocalize, or urinate outside of the litter box. If you have noticed any of these symptoms, you should take your pet to the vet for an evaluation.
A veterinarian will perform a physical examination and will ask detailed questions about your pet’s behavior. They can also rule out medical causes of anxiety. In extreme cases, medication may be needed. The vet can prescribe an anti-anxiety medication that can reduce clinical signs of separation anxiety.
Separation anxiety in cats can be treated by using a behavioral modification program. This includes working up to longer absences. You can also try pheromone diffusers to help your pet cope with stress.
Before you begin a behavior modification program, talk to your veterinarian about your pet’s medical history. Be sure to provide any medical or dietary information that your vet asks for.
When you leave the house, you can give your cat toys and treats. These will keep your cat occupied and distract him from the stress of leaving. Puzzle feeders can also help, as well as interactive enrichment toys.
Make sure to have an enclosed yard and/or patio where your cat can spend time. Try puzzles, scavenger hunts, and mental stimulation. Ensure that your cat has access to a variety of high-quality interactive toys.
Having another cat or a cat sitter can also help. A sitter will stay in the home, allowing your cat to be socialized and remain in the home.