Is your Maine Coon stressed? … Find out how to help them in this article.
Stress is a fairly common problem for many Maine Coons. It is caused by diseases or uncomfortable changes in its environment that affect its territory or its lifestyle. A stressed Maine Coon will frequently show changes in conduct, eating habits, or frequent scratching. Make sure you take your stressed Maine Coon to the veterinarian and revert any changes that affected the cat.
Read on to learn more about Maine Coon stress, the causes, and how to treat this health problem.
Maine Coon Stress
Since Maine Coons are famous for their friendly behavior towards their owners, stress can be an important factor that can change the situation.
If a cat is stressed they have an emotional or mental state of tension created by unfavorable situations.
In order to have a great relationship with your cat, you must know what is Maine Coon stress: causes, symptoms, and treatments.
Nevertheless, we can hardly understand every situation that they go through because they are extremely sensitive animals and can sometimes get annoyed more easily than humans.
Maine Coons can sometimes become stressed, just like humans do. The type of stress that Maine Coons feel is similar to that of humans.
They are sensitive, territorial animals that get used to their environment and lifestyle. If that changes, they feel strongly affected and get stressed.
In order to enjoy a great relationship with your Maine Coon cat, you need to find the factors that stress and solve them.
Changes happen inevitably around the house throughout the years. Some of them can affect your cat more than others.
You can expect the majority of Maine Coons to get stressed at least once throughout their lifetime.
If the stress is not solved correctly, it can become chronic and affect the cat’s wellbeing by leading to behavioral problems and illnesses.
Signs That A Maine Coon Cat Is Stressed
It is difficult to determine if a Maine Coon is stressed because the typical signs are not always clear and they can be caused by another factor different than stress. the typical signs are:
- Maine Coon cat behavioral problems.
- Lowered immune system.
- Amount of food it eats.
When a Maine Coon feels stress, it will show extreme changes in behavior over a short period of time.
For example, it can show apathy towards things and activities it used to enjoy. It can also become aggressive and start attacking other pets and people.
Stress can weaken the immune system of the Maine Coon, leaving it exposed to different kinds of illnesses and infections.
This type of weakness could also be caused by a poor diet or a lack of exercise, both of which could be caused by stress, too.
A change in the amount of food it eats can be a sign of stress. If the Maine Coon eats a different amount of food than usual, it could be a sign of stress. I
t is important to address the problem immediately because the weight gained or lost during this time can lead to a lack of energy and several illnesses.
If your Maine Coon is scratching excessively, it could have parasites. This can be very annoying and if it does not get solved quickly, it could lead to having your Maine Coon cat stressed.
The veterinarian should check your cat right away in these cases so that you can give it the proper treatment.
Causes Of Maine Coon Stress
When you have a stressed Maine Coon cat, the most common causes are:
- Health problems
- Aggression and violence
- Change of environment
- Getting a new pet
- Having too many cats around
- Perceiving worried family members
- Constant loud noises
- Visits from strangers
- Change in food
- Lack of scratching post
1. Health Problems
Health problems can make your cat feel pain or annoyance.
If this goes on for a certain period of time, it will get your Maine Coon stressed.
Sometimes illnesses, parasites, or wounds can be very hard to spot because some of them do not manifest in the exterior part of the cat’s body.
Maine Coons are extremely sociable pets that need the attention of their owners.
If they are alone for a long period of time, they can become stressed and even depressed. They need to play games that exercise them, stimulate their minds, and increase their bond with their owners.
3. Aggression And Violence
The aggression and violence from people or pets in the house can get your Maine Coon stressed. This is something that affects its lifestyle directly because it will not be able to rest and relax in its territory.
If it feels it is being attacked or in constant threat within its environment, it will become stressed.
4. Change Of Environment
Maine Coons are territorial animals and any change in their environments can get it stressed. For example, moving to a different house is a very common cause of stress.
When their territory gets changed radically, they get very annoyed and it can take them some time to adjust to the changes brought upon their territory.
5. Getting A New Pet
A change in the daily routine can become hard to adapt to for your feline and this can get your Maine Coon cat stressed.
Welcoming a new house pet means a huge change in its routines. It implies changes in the cat’s territory and adapting to the behaviors of new animals.
6. Having Too Many Cats Around
If you have too many cats in the house, you can get a stressed Maine Coon cat.
The cats will have to define the hierarchies and this will lead to a lot of fights and dislikes in the group. The Maine Coon will not be able to define its territory with so many other cats around the house.
7. Perceiving Worried Family Members
Very few people know that stress can be contagious, both for people and animals.
Being near an extremely stressed person over a certain period of time can get you stressed, even when you have no reason to feel that way. It feels similar to catching the flu. That also happens to cats.
When there are stressed people in the house for a certain amount of time, the Maine Coon will eventually become stressed, too.
8. Constant Loud Noises
Constant, loud noises can be very stressful for Maine Coons.
They have a more sensitive sense of hearing than humans do. This means that they cannot tolerate noises that we consider acceptable.
Some of these unbearable noises can be:
- Loud music
- Rattle collars
- Yelling at them
9. Visits From Strangers
When a Maine Coon was not properly socialized when it was a kitten, it will have the tendency to hide from visitors.
Having visitors staying over for several days can be stressful for a Maine Coon because there are strange people in its territory and its lifestyle will be modified.
A Maine Coon does not understand your language or your punishments. Screaming at it when it misbehaves will never give you the result you expect.
The only thing you will obtain with these types of behavior is to stress your cat and ruin your relationship with it.
11. Change Of Food
A Maine Coon needs to eat high-quality food.
In time, the cat will get used to eating a certain type of food and might not want it changed.
Doing that can get your Maine Coon stressed. It may show its disapproval with bad behavior.
12. Lack Of Scratching Post
Maine Coons have the need to scratch things in their environment.
They mark their territory by leaving their scent in the places they scratch.
Also, they stretch and exercise their body when they scratch.
Not being able to do that can get your Maine Coon cat stressed.
Since Maine Coons grow into substantially sized cats, I recommend you purchase a heavy-duty cat scratching post, like this one on Amazon.
Another popular alternative, which lays flat on the floor is this one.
How To Treat A Stressed Maine Coon
When you have a stressed Maine Coon cat, the different types of treatments can vary depending on the cause of the stress.
- Medical attention
- Pheromone cat diffusers
- Play with your cat
- Get a scratching post or cat tree
- Trim cats nails, and buy a chew toy
- New pets need to be presented slowly
- Limit the number of pets in the house
- Control your own stress
- Avoid constant loud noises
- Do not force cat to adapt to visitors
- Do not punish your cat
- Select high quality food
- Avoid aggression
- Make the new house comfortable, and stay relaxed
1. Seek Medical Attention
If the cause of distress is not clear, the cat may need medical attention. A visit to the veterinarian for a checkup can be the very first thing to do.
The veterinarian can prescribe the proper medication for the cat to treat its illnesses and stress. Also, and give you advice on how to treat it.
2. Pheremone Cat Diffusers
Pheromone diffusers can be a great way to control a stressed Maine Coon cat.
They are scents produced in labs that resemble those produced by the cat. Humans cannot smell them or be affected by them in any way.
However, when the cause of the problem is a medical condition, they won’t relieve the stress.
It is important to check with your veterinarian ahead of time so that you know what is causing the stress and give the cat the necessary treatment.
During house moves, we found this particular cat pheromone diffuser worked well for our Maine Coon cat. It can be purchased from Amazon, and refills are available.
3. Play With Your Cat
Playing with your cat is a very important part of its life. If you have to leave for a while and leave it alone, leave it in a safe place with some toys to play with.
However, do not leave for very long periods of time because it can affect your cat.
4. Purchase Scratching Post Or Tree
Maine Coons need a scratching post or a cat tree in order to satisfy their need to scratch objects.
They will never learn not to do it and having this need unattended can be very stressful for them.
By placing the double-sided tape on the furniture and a scratching post next to it, the problem should get solved.
I love this extra-large cat tree, on Amazon, because it is:
- Extra large
- Large cat
5. Trim Cats Nails Or Purchase Chew Toy
If it is biting different objects, you can give it a chew toy to bite instead. This does not solve the cause of the problem, but in the meantime, it can help.
Give these mice chew toys from Amazon a go. They are packed full of catnip, and bound to make your Maine Coon go crazy for them!
6. Present New Pets Slowly
Although Maine Coons are friendly to other pets, they could need some time to adapt to their new companion.
Introduce them slowly so that they get used to each other. You can start by placing the new pet in a different room in the beginning.
You can feed them at the same time, but separate their plates. In time start getting their plates closer together when they eat.
Finally, present them face to face so that they can get used to each other.
7. Limit Number Of Pets In House
Pets require a certain amount of space in order to feel well. This implies that there is a limit to the number of pets you can have in a house.
When there are too many pets in a given place, they invade each other’s territory and the house gets overcrowded. This can lead to many behavioral problems.
Even humans become affected by overcrowding.
8. Control Your Own Stress
If your Maine Coon feels stressed, it might be an indicator that you are stressed. If this is the case, you only have to control your stress levels so that the cat feels comfortable again.
By doing this, both you and your cat will avoid getting sick.
9. Avoid Constant Loud Noises
Maine Coons have a very acute sense of hearing. Avoid loud noises like loud music, rattle collars, or constant yelling.
Keeping a quiet atmosphere is good for both you and the cat.
10. Never Force Cat To Adapt To Visitors
If your cat hides every time a stranger visits the house, it may need time to get used to the visitors. Getting your cat out of its hiding place in these cases will not solve the problem.
Instead of that, the cat will become more frightened.
Give it its space and the necessary time to get used to the visitors and come out on its own.
11. Never Punish Cat
If the Maine Coon misbehaves, remember that cats do not understand our language or punishments. Violence, threats, and aggressive body language do not work.
Instead of punishing your cat, give it rewards for good behavior and ignore bad behavior.
Also, make the situations of its bad behavior more difficult and uncomfortable and facilitate positive alternatives so that you can orient its behavior to a more desirable one.
12. Use High Quality Food
Maine Coons have a demanding sense of taste.
When you feed your Maine Coon, always choose good quality food and respect its taste preferences.
If the food has to be changed for a medical condition, ask your veterinarian about the types of food that are convenient for your cat.
13. Avoid Aggression
Do not treat your cat aggressively. Instead of that, use positive and friendly gestures. If a pet treats your Maine Coon in a hostile manner, try to reintroduce them.
Pets can be hard to understand, so you may require the help of a professional in some cases.
If the stressed Maine Coon acts aggressively, trim the nails or use nail caps so that they do not become a threat.
14. Make House Comfortable And Relaxed
If you are moving to a different house, take some of the bedding and furniture to the new home so that the cat has something that it’s familiar with.
Let the places the cat frequented the most be a part of the new house.
It is important to consider that moving to a different house is one of the activities that stresses people the most. If the cat perceives this, it can become stressed, too.
Why Stress Is Bad For Maine Coon Cats
Stress is bad for your Maine Coon. Its immune system can weaken because of stress and this can cause your cat to catch diseases and infections.
Also, your relationship with your cat can deteriorate if it does not feel comfortable in its environment and gets stressed.
Furthermore, if a disease is causing stress, it has to be treated quickly or it will worsen.
A Maine Coon needs an eating schedule, a clean environment, a defined territory, and benevolent treatment.
Discomfort can make your Maine Coon stressed.
The cause of Maine Coon stress is related to illnesses or changes in its environment. Anytime you change something in your house, check how your Maine Coon reacts to that.