questionswhat are some solutions/remedies for a cat that…


It sounds like she's grieving. My cat expert recommends adding another cat, and lots of positive attention.


Is she spayed? Our female cat had the same problem up until she was spayed. Immediately after the procedure, it stopped.

Either way, it sounds like in my case and yours, the issue is anxiety. So anything that would reduce her stress levels might help.


My boss had a crazy cat who chewed his belly bald. Their vet did every test (at no small expense) before becoming so frustrated / intrigued that she offered to continue testing for free. They did everything they could think of until they finally tried a quarter pill of prozac a day. The problem stopped immediately. Turned out the cat was a little crazy, and the meds fixed the issue. The generic for it was cheap, so they still give him a little prozac every day. He hasn't had the issue since, and the vet wrote a paper for a medical journal on it.

Now somebody say "cool story bro"


My cat is also a non-purebreed Siamese, and she will lick at different spots on her fur, to the point where the fur falls out, when she is stressed and unhappy. Once I figure out what is stressing her, she stops the obsessive licking. (On a side not, Siamese cats are known for being a little psychotic/obsessive)

So, try to be Sherlock Holmes and see if anything is really bothering her around your house- maybe you don't have a window open that you left open in the summer, or something else as seemingly innocuous as that. Best of luck!


Definitely seems like a stress issue. Buspar or prozac are options, but it might be worth trying Feliway, since it can be calming to many cats as well. It bothers me that the vet basically said it wasn't a problem. This isn't normal/healthy cat behavior, so there should be a little more concern on the vet's part as to something needing changed.

The problem with just putting a bitter spray to discourage her from licking is that it will stop the obvious issue but is ignoring the underlying cause-- the stress. It might just start to manifest in other ways and isn't treating the actual problem.


I'm going to agree with everyone else and say that it is most likely stress. Our cat had a similar problem a few months ago. A change in our daily routine threw her off and she started pulling out the hair at the base of her tail. Giving her lots of extra attention seemed to help and after a week or 2 she got used to the new routine and calmed down and left the hair alone. Your cat might just need time and comfort since she is missing her friend. Personally I would give her time and attention before turning to drugs.


@jezebelseven: I forgot to mention what Feliway was, in case it wasn't clear-- It's not a drug, it's a diffuser (or spray, but for stress, I believe the wall diffuser is the preferred method) with a mimicking of cat's pheromone. We've used it with varying degrees of success. The first time we had some cat issues it didn't work so well, so we were hesitant to try it again, but we used it again a couple weeks ago, as we were moving to a new place with our 3 cats, and it's made them handle the move much, much better than expected. They've been calm the whole time... even when they were cooped up in a room together for a couple days (as one cat hates the other two so we were expecting catfights and fireworks all night).

More info:

(I bought mine through Amazon as it was much cheaper there than at my vet's, even with the rebate on their website.)


Yes, she is spayed.

She has been pulling out her hair the majority of her life, she started by obsessively grooming her front paws and her rear-end. She's 5 and a half now, and has been pulling out her hair since she was just over a year and a half.

When I first brought her in, they said to try Buspar, which I was hesitant to do, I realize she is a Siamese breed and they can be neurotic or high-maintenance, I expected some craziness when I took her home, I didn't expect the obsessive hair pulling though! What the vet has said that since I didn't want to put her on Buspar was that since she is not hurting herself (ie, making herself bleed), it's just something she's going to do. She said the same thing, Siamese are neurotic sometimes, and this habit is similar to a person biting their nails.

It's just that it's gotten so much worse that has me concerned. I'll try the Feliway, at this point, it's worth a shot. More suggestions still welcome!


This type of problem is a veterinary nightmare becuase it is very difficult to hit upon a treatment regimen that actually satisfies the client. "Stress" is both a likely culprit and a throw-away term that defies pinning down. First, accept that your cat is crazy. Second, make sure it is flea free (it probably is, but make sure). Next, try the various remedies. I have had success (and not) with corticosteroids, megestrol acetate, prozac, amitriptyline, valium, feliway, and combinations and derivatives of them. One client successfully cured her cat of its psychotic behavior by having an animal psychic have a chat with the animal (Honest, she swears it worked, and the cat is doing better and drug free). The one thing I would be skeptical of trying would be getting another animal. Cats are solitary and anti-social. Other than lions, cats in the wild only get together to breed and kill each other. In most cases, bringing in another critter is more likely to cause the problem than cure it.


@nortonsark: Oh, I know she is crazy!

She is the youngest of what was four cats. The cat that died was one that she also 'beat up', but then she would groom him like it was her baby (go figure). Since he died, she's been acting nuttier. Now (as of 10pm eastern last night), she's also getting more aggressive towards my oldest cat.

The other cats are a 11 year old brown tabby that has a problem with getting crystals in his urine and is on a special diet, and a black cat that is exceptionally laid back (she almost always gets along with him, they even sleep together in a cuddlepile under my blankets.)

I'm going to try the feliway first, and if that doesn't work, I'm going to have the vet write her a script. I'm not so sure about the psychic, but maybe if I get desperate enough!

Thanks for stopping in and giving me some advice though, I'm actually getting concerned about her! I don't want to have to give her up either, so, I'm going to get to trying these solutions soon!


One more thing I forgot to add - I know you said that she takes off shirts, but the dog version of this worked well for my parent's dog with anxiety:


My bengal cat did this off and on for years. Her obsessive grooming was stress related as well. We fought it with a combination of figuring out what was stressing her out and changing it as well as using the feliway diffuser on a regular basis.
I hope you can find a good solution that works for you; I know how frustrating it is to know there's something wrong with your kitty but you don't know how to fix it. :(


Catnip 24-7! Seriously, I would pay heed to nortonsark who, as I'm sure you know, is a vet. Good luck!


Yes, I did know that nortonstark is a vet, and I value his advice! In fact, I was hoping to see his reply in this question eventually, and so glad he did! So, thanks @nortonstark!!

I just bought a feliway at my vet today (I wanted to start it ASAP, and I already had to pick up the special diet for my tabby, so killed two birds with one stone~so to speak, lol!).

I'm going to look into the thundershirt for cats next, even if it's only on the days she seems most stressed.

Ah, catnip, I can't even begin to tell you how many catnip toys these little munchins have! They have access to those 24/7, and maybe that's part of the problem, lol!

I remember buying her special toys for 'teething' and 'mouthy' cats a while back, but they seem to be MIA (she hid them very well!), so I may buy her these again too, not sure how much they help, but, it puts something else in her mouth besides herself!


@baybei: good luck!
I have a multiple cat & dog household, there is occasional fighting among the cats so feliway is always plugged in - works good on common issues. last year my youngest cat (8) began licking to the point he had no hair on his stomach, was constantly aggressive to my oldest cat (17), & the ones in the middle would attack him to protect the oldest. feliway was not effective at all. after trying some things, my vet prescribed buspar. within a few days he was a totally different cat. the aggression ceased, the licking stopped, he was relaxed, & not on attack mode all the time, he was more sociable, and really seemed happier. no side effects & he doesn't act like he is drugged. if this is what your vet recommends, I wouldn’t hesitate to try it. really made a difference to him and to how the other cats respond to him.


@kaiserlucifer: ooh, I didn't know they made that for cats. My non-purebreed siamese is super scared of the outside and loud noises. But that doesn't stop him from thinking he wants to go outside. And so now I put him in a harness (which is full netting across almost the entire body, almost like a thundershirt but not quite as much fabric) and it seems to make him think he is SuperCat when he occasionally gets to go for a walk out on the porch or in the back yard. I'm betting he would really like a thundershirt.