Signs of Stress in Cats

Did you know that, just like people, cats can feel stress and anxiety? Fluffy may not have to worry about turning in that big report, car repairs, or juggling bills. However, kitties can get very worried and nervous in certain situations. Some of the things that make kitties feel stress include moving, gaining or losing a human or furry roommate, changing owners, and veterinary appointments. (Sorry, Fluffy: visiting us is in your best interests!) Some cats even get anxiety over new or rearranged furniture! Here, a Sugar Land, TX vet lists some common signs of stress in kitties.

Litterbox Woes

Stress can cause Fluffy to stop using her litterbox. She may also have diarrhea or get constipated. Never punish your kitty for litterbox mishaps. It will only increase her anxiety, which could make matters worse.


Kitties are very, very diligent about grooming themselves. Fluffy will take time every day to keep her pretty fur soft and shiny. However, cats that are stressed sometimes go overboard, and groom themselves so much that their fur starts looking thin or patchy.


Kitties often withdraw when they are sick or unhappy. If Fluffy keeps hiding, and doesn’t want to leave her hiding spot, she may be anxious.


Cats often think of their humans as parents, and may demand extra attention when they feel scared or upset. If Fluffy wants to snuggle 24/7, she may be dealing with separation anxiety, or another form of stress.

Excessive/Unusual Vocalizations

If Fluffy is feeling stressed, she may meow or growl. Of course, some kitties are naturally furry little chatterboxes. What you want to be concerned about are changes in Fluffy’s vocalizations. How your pet acts when she meows is also telling. If Fluffy is following you around with her tail up and generally just acting chipper, she may just be talkative. If your pet seems withdrawn, nervous, or aggressive, she may be feeling stressed.


It’s important to note that all of the signs listed above can also be indicative of medical issues, as well as stress. If your furball has any of these symptoms, have your vet examine her. If Fluffy checks out, at least you know you have a nervous pet, instead of a sick one.

Please contact us, your Sugar Land, TX vet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We are here to help!

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