If you’re a cat owner and have never had to deal with a hissing, snarling, or cowering cat, consider yourself lucky. At some point during your cat’s lifetime, they will inevitably become anxious or agitated. The causes are quite varied, but no matter the reason, you’ll need to help your cat calm down. Here’s how to calm down a cat:
- Assess the situation. Is your cat hissing at the neighbor’s cat? Is your cat cowering in the corner because there are too many visitors in your home? Is your cat tearing through the house because they’re too excited about playing? If you can’t figure out just what has your cat so agitated, look for patterns of behavior. Some cats exhibit strange behavior due to past events in their lives. Determining what’s got your cat all worked up is the first step in calming down a cat.
- Take your cat to a quiet place. If possible, take your cat to a quiet place, such as a bedroom in your home where they can hide until the excitement is over. Speak in a calm voice to keep them from becoming more agitated. Some cats may prefer to be left alone, while others like to be held.
- Improve the situation. If you can’t remove your cat from the situation entirely, try to make it easier for them. When traveling, bring your cat’s favorite food and toys. Place a blanket in the carrier, and bring it out long before the big day so that they can get used to it. Put on some music or turn on the TV to distract them from an approaching thunderstorm. Doing what you can to make it less agitating for your cat is easier than trying to calm down a cat later.
- Try herbs. If there is likely to be a situation where your cat will become agitated, start the calming routine before it happens. Herbs like thyme and chamomile can naturally calm your cat’s nerves when added to his water dish. There are other ways to provide a calming atmosphere, too, including low lighting and talking in quiet voices.
- Talk to your vet. Does your cat always become agitated when you bring out the cat carrier, or start cowering at the first clap of thunder? Talk with your veterinarian about appropriate ways to deal with this natural response to fear. Your vet can suggest things that you can do, or prescribe a medication that can calm your cat.
Dealing with an anxious or agitated cat can be difficult, since you can’t reason with them. Instead, try to deal with the situation, either by removing the cat from the situation or making it better. If anxiety or agitation is a routine problem for your cat, a trip to the vet help sort it out, and help your cat live a healthy and happy life with you.