Depression is mostly associated with humans; however, animals like cats also suffer from the condition. Although cats always appear to be calm and relaxed, they too can suffer from depression. It is your responsibility as a cat owner to observe your pet carefully for you to notice the signs and symptoms that indicate that the cat is depressed. Cat depression can be prevented and treatable.
Signs of depression in cats
Behavioral changes can indicate that your cat is experiencing a lot of problems. In case a normally sociable and friendly cat starts to appear shy and reserved, the cat may be suffering from depression. A cat that loved to play around and interact with various objects but now shies away and won’t go near people may be depressed. However behavioral changes only can be difficult to employ while identifying the condition; therefore it should be monitored together with other signs to come up with a correct conclusion.
Sleeping is vital for your cat’s health; in fact, cats appear to sleep most of the time. However, it is easy to observe a change in your cat’s sleeping habit when they are depressed. Depressed cats tend to sleep more than usual and are always inactive even when they are wide awake; this is because dejected cats experience low energy levels.
Also, reduced appetite can be a symptom of a depression problem. If your cat used to eat a significant amount of food fast but suddenly it appears to eat reluctantly or hardly takes any food; then there is a problem somewhere. When your cat has a depression problem; it is likely that its appetite will reduce and the cat will not enjoy its food.
Your cat may be depressed if it starts over grooming; this is another sign of the cat’s health being problematic. Cats require cleaning up and maintaining a high level of cleanliness; however, excessive grooming may lead to problems, for example, bald patches, hairballs, and sore skin because they will lose a lot of furs.
Making excessive noises is another potential problem sign with a cat that usually stays quiet calling out frequently and sometimes at strange hours for instance during the night when they are often quiet. A Depressed cat can feel alone and make noises to attract your attention even when you are not at home; this usually happens if someone in the household has died making the cat to mourn.
Problems with using the waste box is also another sign of depression; when an ordinarily choosy cat takes to depositing their waste in unusual places, then this means something is wrong. The problem may lie with the actual waste box but if the problem continues without any improvements as time pass; then there might be something wrong with your cat.
Other possible signs of depression in cats
• Reduced appetite
• Failure to groom regularly
• Behavioral changes
• Violence Possible Causes Of Depression In Cats.
When you start to spend more time away from home; your cat will always feel lonely. Loneliness is one of the leading causes of depression in cats.
Your cat can get bored by the environment even when you don’t spend much time away from home. Cats like to run about, have an adventure, and play with items. Consider acquiring items that appeal to your cat such as toys to play with; this helps the cat to stay active thus avoiding depression. In addition, let your cat play around the house to avoid being bored; cats love to be in a free environment.
The cat’s diet is another possible reason that may lead to depression. Consider providing a variety of meals for your cat rather than feeding it with one type of foods. Furthermore, ensure the meal is of good quality and has all the required nutrients such as vitamins and other essential components.
Another cause of cat depression is an illness. When your cat is suffering from persistent pain due to a specific condition; it can show some behavioral changes such as depression. Also, severe infections could also be the main reason for cat depression.
Depression in cats is not hard to identify when you observe your cat. Rather than being active as usual; the cat will most likely hide away from your presence. Several felines also become a bit hostile. There are other signs that often go together with depression in cats.
How to treat cat depression
If your cat shows the signs of any illness or depression, you should contact your veterinary doctor immediately. Inform them about the symptoms to assist them in identifying the problem and find out the cause of the condition. The vet will check the cat carefully, and in case an underlying problem is detected; then a medical solution will likely treat cat depression. Anti-depressants or hormonal drugs can be used to get rid of moderate depression.
You should also offer your pet with gentle care; for example, consider spending additional time to play with the cat. You may also purchase some toys and other types of treats for the cat. In addition, you can search for a companion for the cat to keep it company and help to treat the depression.
Although all of these symptoms are significant depression indicators; they can also be symptoms of other diseases. It is always imperative to seek for advice from a veterinary doctor immediately in case these signs appear to avoid any underlying health conditions. If your cat is not grooming, as usual, brush and clean it by hand; this will give the cat a sense of friendship with you that can help solve the problem.
In case you need to leave your senior cats home alone for a long period, ensure that you have improved the environment by opening the curtains. This will give the cat an outside view and also bring in some light. Consider leaving a television or radio on during the day to prevent the cat from feeling alone. It is difficult to prevent your cat from being depressed since some cats are more vulnerable to stress just like humans. However, it is essential to provide a regular, stress-free, tender environment for your cat to help him avoid depression. Also, consider taking your cat to a veterinary check up on a regular basis; this will help you to maintain your cat’s health.
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