Is he cold? Is he afraid? Is he suffering from something? It is sometimes difficult to tell the difference. We give you some tips on what it is and what to do if it starts running in all directions when under stress.
WHAT IS A TREMOR?
Tremor is the effect observed during the repeated and involuntary contraction of a muscle or a group of muscles.
It is considered normal if your cat is cold , then it is a thermal energy regulation mechanism, it is also considered normal if your cat is afraid . In these two cases, it is generally on the whole of the body of your animal that we observe the tremors.
In other cases, the tremor is said to be pathological and corresponds to a disease (such as epilepsy for example). The type of tremor is then very different.
HOW TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FEAR TREMOR AND THE OTHERS?
It is the circumstances of its appearance or the way it trembles that tell you.
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOUR CAT IS COLD?
In this case, it seems obvious when it’s cold of course. However, some cats (like some humans) will feel cold at temperatures that seem normal. In this case, you will know the difference with the repetition of tremors as soon as it is a little humid and if your cat trembles when you open the door or the window or if he searches for the radiators in this type of context. For those who like to go out and who support it, a small coat can be a solution …
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOUR CAT IS SCARED?
Obviously also, when there is a stressful element for him (arrival of a dog, loud noise in your home or in the neighborhood, children chasing him) and especially if your cat has the impression that he cannot escape to escape it. The leak under a bed or in a closet will also be a good confirmation. Be careful, sometimes it is said a little too quickly that some cats are “afraid to go out” when they are simply cold outside. You have to remember to check that this is also the case when it is hot and then look for the cause (new cats in the neighborhood, work in the street, etc.)
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOUR CAT HAS A CONDITION THAT CAUSES IT TO SHIVER?
In this case the tremors are really different:
It is often a single muscle group that trembles, sometimes a single part of the body that trembles, we also sometimes speak of “convulsions”, that is to say manifestations with a greater or lesser loss of consciousness (in the case of epilepsy for example);
Your cat also usually has other signs that appear if it is an illness that makes him tremble (salivation, falling, trembling of only one part of the body, loss of consciousness);
These “disease” tremors can be observed during neurological disorders (epilepsy, encephalitis (cerebral inflammation), cerebellar ataxia, etc.), sometimes due to infections, during metabolic diseases (hypoglycaemia, for example during an incorrect dosage of insulin for diabetes), during poisoning (medicines for dogs wrongly given, excess dosage, toxic such as garden insecticides or rat poison), during (physical) trauma, etc.
In this case, it is necessary to consult so that your veterinarian can make the diagnosis or carry out additional examinations which will allow it.
HOW TO CALM A FRIGHTENED CAT RUNNING OR JUMPING AROUND?
When your cat is running around shaking with fear, it is best to be as calm as possible because if you are also agitated you risk adding stress to stress.
If you are inside, let him hide until he calms down, making sure to block off the access to risky places from which he could not get out (back of the refrigerator, etc.) and wait for him to come out of himself.
If you are outside and he is on a leash, put him back in the carrying bag or, failing that, cover him (without suffocating him, so without tightening) with clothing if you can. A hidden cat feels less exposed and therefore less stressed. If that’s not possible, give him time to come to his senses and return him home as soon as he is physically calmer.
If he has escaped you outside, you should try to approach him slowly, scaring him as little as possible . If he then stops moving and has taken refuge under a car, for example, it is sometimes better to let him calm down than to approach and scare him away again. Indeed, unfortunately, your cat is overwhelmed by his stress and he will not necessarily make a difference between your approach which usually reassures him and that of someone foreign.
If your cat is often shaking with fear, anti-stress products can help. If they are not sufficient, your veterinarian or a behaviorist veterinarian may also be required to prescribe an anxiolytic (by prescription) or even to set up behavioral therapy.
HOW TO PREVENT YOUR CAT FROM SHAKING IN FEAR?
Prevention, ie good socialization and familiarization with the environment from an early age are the key. As soon as your kitten is vaccinated, and under certain conditions before the vaccine (no contact with sick cats or dirty places – excrement – outside for example), you must take care to take it out and at home to show it all everyday objects (sounds of vacuum cleaners, door or window slamming, doorbell…), in short to trivialize.
The trivialization in the first weeks of life ideally already started at the breeder must continue at home and it is essential to put it in place before the age of 12 weeks.
After this age, your cat will be able to get used to the novelty, but it may take longer. You can support him in this process with products that help reduce stress.