How To Calm Down A Cat When Angry, Scared, Or Agitated

Cats of all breeds and ages can get extremely upset. Aggressive or stressed-out behavior is bound to occur, and as a pet parent you’re the one who must help the kitty calm down.

Scared and angry cats or felines in heat usually find it difficult to calm themselves down. Frantic running, hiding, meowing, yowling, hissing, and other similar types of problematic behavior are the most common telltale signs that you must take control of the situation.

Calming a feline creature isn’t easy, especially if it’s being aggressive. Nevertheless, it’s not mission impossible. There are several ways to approach the kitty without the need of relaxants and sedatives such as Feliway sprays.

How To Calm Your Cat Down And Make It Relax

Here are the most practical ways to help your pet relax. But whatever you do, remember that your cat is a living being with emotions and feelings. As such, you need to treat it carefully.

Locate The Problem

Before you take any measures, you need to find what it is that’s upsetting your precious furball. Could it be simply startled by something? Is it scared or extremely anxious? Or is it acting territorial and overprotective?

Kitties can get upset for a number of reasons. Trips to the vet, unknown strangers, new surroundings, car sickness, noisy children, and unexpected loud sounds are common anxiety triggers.

Improve The Kitty’s Accommodation

Even though cats don’t see the world the way we do, they still perceive it similarly. When it comes to certain surroundings, cats can feel just as relaxed, anxious, scared, or angry as human beings.

Try to improve the kitty’s surroundings. Set up a comfortable cat bed and make sure the room is quiet, safe, and has a pleasant temperature. Remove anything that might be upsetting your pet. This includes children, unknown strangers, other pets, and so forth. Cats can easily be upset by new furniture pieces or loud appliances.

Make sure your furry pal has safety and comfort in its room. If you’ve recently moved into a new home, give the cat some time to adjust to its new surroundings.

Approach Your Pet

When approaching your beloved furball, remember not to make any sudden movements or to block its possible escape routes. Be cautious and keep your cat’s safety in mind, as well as your own. Bites, scratches, and other attempts at attack might occur.

Speak to your furball is a soft and soothing tone. Talk to your kitty in order to calm it down before trying to engage in any physical contact with it.

Opt for bringing out its favorite cat toy. Instead of dangling the toy and teasing the cat, simply leave the toy nearby. Another option is to bring a food bowl filled with your feline pal’s favorite food. You can also use cat treats.

If the cat allows you to get close enough to touch it, do it. Use slow, soothing strokes while you’re petting it. Talk as you’re stroking the kitty and don’t make sudden gestures or loud noises. If possible, embrace the kitty and hug it near ground level so that it has an easy escape route if it decides to bolt.

Allow The Cat To Adjust

If the above tricks don’t work, give your feline pal some space. Sometimes it’s best to leave your pet alone in a quiet room until it calms down on its own. You can use a towel to wrap the kitty in it as you’re carrying it to the other room so that it won’t scratch and bite or try to jump from your arms.

Seek A Professional’s Help

Sometimes cats can become anxious and upset due to health reasons – either physical or emotional. An undiagnosed health disorder can easily be the reason behind your pet’s anxiety.

If you can’t calm your cat down with the above techniques, schedule an appointment with your vet. If necessary, the vet will prescribe medication such as relaxants and anxiety remedies (such as pheromone Feliway sprays and cat collars.)

Regardless of the cause behind your cat’s behavior, the most important thing to do is to not panic! Your kitty will sense that there’s something wrong with you, which will make it even more anxious.

Emily Parker

Emily Parker is the Content Manager at Catological. She's passionate about helping cat parents love their cats better by providing the best information and recommendations about everything you'll need to know about your cat, from kitten to senior years. She believes natural, biologically-appropriate products are best...why wouldn't you provide the best for a member of your family?!

1 thought on “How To Calm Down A Cat When Angry, Scared, Or Agitated”

  1. This was a great read! Hopefully, no one will have to experience this but unfortunately, this is something every cat parent will have to face at some point. Upset cats are no joke and they can pose danger to you and themselves.

    It is important to let your cat have a time on its own after you do your soothing part.

    Depending on the reason why the cat got upset I would either approach it slowly immediately or leave her alone for some time and then slowly approach with her favorite treats and toys.

    Here is how to help a very upset cat which will not tolerate anyone’s presence.

    Do not try and soothe your cat if it is rejecting your help because you can possibly make things worse. Wait for the right moment to approach. You can observe your cat from a safe distance from the ground and try and make yourself less of a threat by not making sudden movements and by trying to look physically smaller. You can accomplish that by laying on the ground on your side with your shoulder touching the floor but also be careful with this position on the floor. Make sure that there is enough distance between you and your cat for you to get up or move before your cat would attack you if provoked because your eyes and face would be very close to the ground.

    Observing the cat from a distance and not having a threatful appearance will help your cat calm down and then you should slowly lean with your hand and try and pet it, once the petting has been approved by the kitty that will mean that the cat is much calmer than before. Then start soothing it even further.

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