Source: Express (Extract)
Posted: September 8, 2021

The coronavirus pandemic over the last year-and-a-half has disrupted virtually every facet of 21st century life. From forcing office workers to set up shop at home, to bringing entire industries to a grinding halt, the coronavirus has exacted a heavy toll on the nation. Animal experts have now warned pet cats all across the country have also felt the impact of the pandemic, with Covid forcing them into a new and rather alien lifestyle.

According to animal charity Cats Protection, having to adjust to their owners working from home has been a pretty stressful ordeal.

Unlike man’s best friend, cats tend to be more solitary creatures, especially when on the hunt.

This, of course, is not always the case with every cat.

According to Blue Cross for Pets, domesticated cats can still form intimate bonds with their owners and “on rare occasions, can even develop separation anxiety” when left alone for long periods of time.

But a spokeswoman for the charity has warned cats may still become stressed by the amount of time they are spending with their owners.

With owners no longer going to the office and children learning from home, cats don’t have the seven or eight hours of peace and quiet to act as a “circuit breaker”.

The stress of having to share a space with humans round-the-clock has led to an increase in life-threatening conditions in the last 18 months.

Vets have reported an uptick in blocked bladders in male cats and cystitis in female cats.

A spokeswoman told The Times: “It would appear that some cats may have become more stressed in their home during the pandemic.

“Changes to a cat’s routine always have the potential to cause stress, as they are creatures of habit.”

“As well as this, ‘safe’ or ‘quiet’ places that a cat could have escaped to in the home previously may have been repurposed as a home office, so the cat no longer has a quiet place.”

To help fight against the pressures of adjusting to the new routines, Cats Protection has suggested creating moggie-friendly safe spaces.

These could be quiet little corners, where you can tuck away treats, water and blankets for your cat to hide once in a while.

According to Cats Protection, there are a number of tell-tale signs your cat is stressed.

These include being more withdrawn than usual, being less tolerant of people, overeating and house soiling.

Cats may also react to stress by over-grooming and being more hesitant to interact with owners.

If you notice any of these symptoms, the charity suggests giving your cat some space.

And if you suspect your beloved moggie is suffering from any health condition, pay a visit to your vet.


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