(THE COMFY SOFA, My House, Annapolis, Maryland) April 14, 2015—Stress is one of those things that we are all aware of, even felines! Fittingly, April is Stress Awareness month and there are several ways humans and felines can help each other out!
Luckily for humans, cats are awesome at helping to reduce stress. It sounds too good to be true, but it has indeed been scientifically proven! Who knew that we could provide such great health benefits to our humans? Cats can help reduce stress by:
- Being a companion. Cats are often portrayed as being complete loners. Though it seems as though we need our space sometimes, we are actually really good at being companions. To be precise, we are America’s #1 companion and are present in more than 30 percent of all US households, spreading unconditional love.
- Receiving your attention. We love to seek out attention from our humans and as it turns out this benefits not only us, but them as well! The repetitive motion of petting a feline and hearing them purr can reduce stress.
- Making you laugh. Cat videos are popular for a reason! Felines can do some outrageously funny things – like wearing a shark costume and riding a Roomba – and laughter is, as the saying goes, the best medicine. Laughter can help reduce both long and short-term stress.
In return for all of the benefits that we give humans, they can help cats by:
- Making our visits to the veterinarian easier. Humans can do this by making our carrier a “home away from home.” If it is a comfortable resting, feeding or play location, we’ll associate those fantastic feelings with it. Also, if you keep the carrier out, it will be more familiar and we won’t run and hide once we see it.
- Providing us with a healthy environment. Felines, especially indoor cats, thrive in an enriched environment. Ensure that we have enough stimulation, places to hide, and opportunities for regular exercise. This will keep us healthy, happy, and stress free.
- Get to know us. The secret to finding out what is right for your cat and what will keep them stress free, is understanding what is normal for them. Some of us like to hide more than others or are more affectionate. Taking the time to figure out our individual personalities and embracing them, can help us lead longer happier lives.