Whether it is from your teenage playing his music on full volume, your neighbor doing some long overdue renovations or fireworks from the fourth of July, loud sounds are a normal parts of our daily lives. However, they may affect our feline friends a lot more worse than us.
Many cats are terrified of loud sounds (and for good reason). Unlike human beings, they don’t necessarily understand the difference between various noises. With their sensitive hearing, sounds may appear to much louder to them than they do for us. It's no wonder that they are scared.
Loud sounds and non-stop noise signal unexplained danger that they may not know how to cope with. When left unmanaged, this can lead to trauma, hearing loss, and distrust towards you. But, how do cat parents know if their fur babies are scared?
How to Know If Your Cat Is Scared
No matter how confident your feline friend is, continuous loud and unexpected sounds can be traumatizing. If it is your cat’s first time to experience something like it, they need your help to bring them to feel safe.
A few common ways to tell if a cat is scared is with its body language. Scared cats will generally appear restless. Often, they will even do so with their tails tucked between their legs or hung low.
Another way to tell if a cat is afraid is through their actions such as excessive grooming, hiding, and not eating or drinking. They may also exhibit unusual behavior like aggression, peeing outside the litter box, or trying to run away.If you’re looking for a way to keep your cat calm during one of the most stressful seasons, here are a few ways how:
Keep Your Feline Friend Inside
It goes without saying that the first thing your furry friend will do when hearing a loud, terrifying sound is to go further away from it. Should your cat escape from your home, they’re at risk of inhaling fumes, getting run over, or getting lost.
Avoid all the stress of a missing pet during the new year by making sure that you keep your cat indoors. Before the fireworks even start, make sure that any possible entryways or exits are closed off.
Find Your Cat a Safe Space
Right before the ruckus begins, bring your cat to the quietest room in your house. Whether it’s the basement, toilet, or bedroom, keep them somewhere where they will experience the least of the noise.
Be sure that your cat has enough food, water, and a litter box so that they will not have an urge to leave the room unnecessarily. Block all unsafe areas and possible exit routes to avoid any injury when hiding.
Stay by Your Cat’s Side (or Not)
If your cat is quite attached to anyone in your household, it’s best to keep them company to console them during this time. Being wrapped up like a burrito with their favorite blanket can make it easier for you to hold them and comfort them.
However, should your cat be the type to want to be alone, give them the space to deal with their emotions. Terrified cats can be very aggressive, so handle them with discretion.
Calm Cats Down with Treats
Should your cat be prone to intense anxiety, you can prepare for stressful, loud days with cat safe, calming treats. Most cat owners have a catnip plant or toys lying around. It’s best to give catnip to your cat before the sounds even start.
For the few cats that catnip does not work on, you may also use commercially available cat treats designed to calm them down or buy some valerian root from the supermarket.
Keep Your Cat Occupied
By keeping your cats entertained, their minds are off all the noise of the outside world. Play some calming music, turn on the radio, or the TV to mask the unfamiliar noise with more familiar ones.
Have enough toys to keep your cats entertained, so they can focus on what is happening indoors instead of what is happening outside of it.
Get Your Cats Used To Fireworks
While it’s great to calm your feline friend during the fireworks, the best step is actually to train them to get used to it. You can do this by watching fireworks on TV shows or movies together, and show them that it’s nothing to be scared of.
However, it is best to be cautious about training them to avoid loud sounds in general. In an event of an actual calamity or dangerous situation, your cat’s survival depends on their ability to respond to their surroundings.
Be Prepared for Anything
No matter how well you try, some cats are just easily spooked. With this, it’s important to be prepared should they manage to find a way to run away. Before the noisy season even begins, check if your cat’s vaccinations, collar, and microchip details are up to date.
Many unidentified pets that have escaped find themselves taken in by strangers who think that they stray cats. Otherwise, escaped cats are also sent to the shelter. If they escape your home, these steps make sure that they have a better shot of finding their way back to you.
Keep Your Cats Calm During Festive Seasons
During the festive seasons, do not forget about your cat. Loud sounds like construction work or fireworks can be a traumatizing experience, especially if it is your cat’s first time to experience them. They need your help to get through it with as little stress as possible.
Prepare your cat and your home before the festivities even begin. Create a space with as little noise as possible, and give your cat the right amount of company.
Distract them with music, toys, and entertainment to keep their mind off the loud sounds. Provide them enough food, water, and litter to get through the night without feeling the need to leave their safe area. Keeping your cat indoors is the best way to keep them safe from any harm.
Keeping cats calm may seem like a lot of work. However, it’s well worth it to make sure that your cat remains trusting of you. Caring for the well-being of our furry friends include their mental well-being, which includes making sure that they're well-adjusted to the noise of the world around them.
With time, most cats will learn that these are periods are normal, temporary, and nothing to be afraid of. Until then, they have you to protect them.