Knowing how to spot signs that your cat is stressed is essential for every cat parent. Cats tend to hide symptoms of stress very well and they can be difficult to spot. Chronic stress in a cat may also result in a wide range of illnesses because stress affects the immune system. The earlier you can spot signs your feline friend is stressed out, the quicker you can treat any discomfort your cat is feeling.

Signs Cats Could Be Stressed

Here are the top 5 signs of stress in a cat.

Urinating outside the litter box

Inappropriate urination could be a sign that your cat is stressed. The cause of stress could be something as simple as rearranged furniture, a new pet in the home, or loud noises. If you notice that your pet cat is urinating outside the litter box, avoid the temptation to chastise your cat. This may just increase stress levels.

Excessive grooming

Cats under stress tend to groom themselves excessively. Of course, all cats groom themselves. But, if you notice that your pet cat is licking and chewing so much that bald spots are appearing, then it would seem your cat’s anxiety levels are up.


Cat aggression is one sign of stress. You probably know your cat’s typical behavior well, so it should be easy to spot if your furry friend has become more aggressive. You may notice that your once peace-loving pet now hisses, scratches, or bites when they never used to do that.

Change in eating habits

Just a stress can make humans eat more or less, so too, stress can cause changes in your cat’s eating habits. Have you noticed that food is being left behind in the bowl, or your cat has even stopped eating at all? This might be a sign that your cat is under stress. Of course, a visit to your local vet clinic is a good idea to check for any other underlying health problems.


Cats tend to be loners, but a new tendency towards avoiding all contact with others is a common sign of stress or discomfort.

What to Do if Your Cat is Stressed?

The best course of action if you notice symptoms of stress in your cat is to go for a checkup at your vets. Your local vet can give a thorough examination and check blood work to make sure that there is no disease or illness that is causing changed behavior in your cat.