Although each feline has its own character, cats are generally sociable and affectionate animals. Even so, certain situations can generate stress in cats and it is very important to know how to calm a nervous cat to help it. If your cat feels restless, threatened, or cornered, the chances that it will engage in aggressive behavior or end up attacking you are high, even if it tries to flee first. Hence, knowing how to make a scared cat trust you are essential. Even the most friendly and calm animal can experience, at a certain moment, feelings of fear and anxiety, so it is something normal, but you have to know how to handle it in the best possible way. Let’s discover how to get a scared cat out of hiding.
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If you live with a cat, you surely know its habits and its habitual behavior perfectly. In general, cats are “very yours.” Although they are playful and affectionate, there are always times when they like to maintain their space and some independence. Keep this in mind and do not burden him when he decides to be alone and hide anywhere in the house until he decides to reappear and look for you to listen to him. This is a very common behavior in cats that has nothing to do with fear or stress. A scared cat is easy to recognize because its own body language will give you all the clues you need. How do you know if a cat is afraid? Take a look at the following:
Finding out what causes her nervousness is an important first step in making your cat’s fear go away. It may be a noise that is strange and unpleasant to you, the presence of strangers or another animal(for example a dog), a space that overwhelms him … these are some common causes, especially when a cat is scared in a new house because he does not know that new environment and does not trust anything or anyone. In these cases, be patient and just give it its space. Let him wander through his new home and familiarize himself with everything around him. The first few days, try to find out what makes him nervous, to avoid the focus of restlessness whenever possible (it can be something as simple as the noise of a washing machine spinning).
In other cases, it may not be so easy to know why your cat is afraid. If the pet you have lived with for a long time suddenly shows the signs of stress that we have described, the best way to try to calm your cat is to talk to it in a sweet and slow way. If he’s nervous, don’t try to pick him up to reassure him. Simply speak to him and your calm tone of voice will convey precisely the calm he needs. Of course, do not yell, scold or threaten him even if he is hiding in a place where you do not want him to be. It is better to give him calm and confidence so that he only goes out and when he approaches you, you can touch or pick him up.
If your cat is nervous, already with its back bent (and perhaps about to attack), crouching or stretching, keeping a safe distance from it can give good results. Getting at his height (and not standing up) will make the animal dismiss any threatening attitude on your part.
In this way, it will begin to calm down. It will leave the hunched or hunched position that it had to prepare to jump and it will remain calm or, surely, it will go elsewhere. In this situation, do not follow him immediately, as he can become just as nervous again and attack you if he is cornered.
It is a little trick that can also make your cat relax and forget what has caused him fear. Offering him some wet food or showing him that cat toy that he likes so much, maybe he will get him to come to you to savor that delicacy you are offering him or to play with his favorite toy and, thus, he will be distracted from his initial problem. Take advantage of this moment to change the source of his fear (remove what made him nervous or, if you cannot, take him to another area of the house), so the problem will not recur as soon as he stops being distracted bit with food or play.
If you see that the cat begins to be somewhat calmer, try to slowly approach and stroke it with a finger. Cats love pampering around the snout or under the chin. If he rejects the caresses, do not insist, but if he accepts them willingly, little by little, you will make the fear disappear and trust in you.
This is a basic premise to calm a frightened cat. Make sure you always have an escape route through which you can leave whenever you want, for example, to another room or to a high place such as a closet, the back of a sofa or a scraper with a platform. Many cats calm down by being up high, somewhere where they can control their surroundings and keep an eye out for any potential threats.
In extreme cases, you can also turn to pheromone products for cats. The pheromones that cats naturally secrete manage to calm them by smelling them, especially with maternal pheromones, which quickly calm the young. You can find sprays and diffusers with these pheromones to have at home and get your cat to detect the pheromones through smell and feel more relaxed without realizing the process.
However, before using them, a veterinary consultation is advisable. If fear and stress problems with your cat are frequent, he may need some type of treatment (perhaps he is in pain or has an undetected disease) or the help of an ethologist to analyze his behavior and possible causes.