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June 30, 2009 2:55 PM   Subscribe

Feliway-filter: We got feliway a week ago and my cat's inappropriate elimination, etc problems went away, but he isn't fun anymore.

After having major problems recently with our cat peeing and pooping all over the house, and getting very upset when guests visited, we finally got a Feliway diffuser after he peed on a beloved piece of furniture. It had an immediate impact- he quieted down and stopped acting anxious within 30 minutes.

We've had the diffuser in the living room for about a week, and all of the inappropriate elimination and other problems have vanished. But...so has our cat's interest in doing anything other than sleeping. He no longer sleeps in any of his other favorite places, he just snoozes by the feliway diffuser (in locations <1 ft away where he has NEVER slept before).

He doesn't have any interest in playing with us anymore. He doesn't like to play with string or catnip or bouncy toys or catnip mice or anything. He doesn't like sitting in the window or watching the birds at the feeder. He just sleeps, rousing only for foodtime.

On one hand, it is nice to go through a week without him peeing on something. But on the other hand, I miss the energetic furball who used to play with me and be so avidly interested in life!

Are we drugging him into a stupor with Feliway? Will the fun cat come back? Or was his playfulness just anxiety manifesting itself in the past?
posted by stewiethegreat to Pets & Animals (3 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
give it a month, he will get more used to it and his playfulness will come back.. as long as he is eating, drinking and pooping enough he will probably get through it.
posted by By The Grace of God at 3:36 PM on June 30, 2009

Fun cat will come back. I've gone through exactly this with my previously anxious and cranky kitty. For a few days, he was zombie cat, but he's fine now.

If you're concerned about the level of lazy, you could unplug the diffuser when you're home and want to play with him, and plug it back in when there are guests or whenever your kitty seems anxious.
posted by burntflowers at 11:04 PM on June 30, 2009

Sounds as if he's enjoying the smell of security, which is what Feliway provides. He could well be catching up on some proper relaxation too. Let him do this without hassle, it can take a cat who has been stressed a fair time to really chill out.

Keep a close eye on his eating,drinking and elimination, any change there, then off to the vet. Major changes in behaviour often signify there's something physically wrong.

The diffusers aren't designed to be plugged in and out at will - there's a fire risk, the substance will clog up the diffuser, overheat and catch fire according to the manufacturer. A constant level of Feliway in the home is better for your cat than fluctuating levels. He's not a machine to be switched on and off according to human whim, so I'd keep the diffuser plugged in.

Getting the Feliway spray and putting a few squirts on all doorways, furniture etc at cat head height around the house, will let him feel more relaxed everywhere else.

I think By The Grace Of God is right, he'll find himself again, once he's convinced the feeling of security will last.

Best of luck.
posted by Arqa at 6:20 AM on July 1, 2009

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