You’ve had your fur baby for years – they’re your constant companion who isn’t afraid to keep your feet warm on long WFH days or stay up for exam week all-nighters. You’ve got a routine together, and that routine hasn’t changed for years – until now.
Your litter-box-trained cat is peeing on the stove, or your devoted bone-chewing pup is shredding your sofa! When your pet’s behavior goes from predictable to downright weird, you probably have questions. Read on to learn about bizarre pet behaviors and what they could mean!
Note: If your pet’s behavior suddenly changes, always contact your vet to rule out any potential medical issues.
Weird Pet Behaviors and What They Mean
1. Cat peeing in unusual places
Why did my cat pee on my bed?! Cats are sensitive animals that rely heavily on familiarity and routine. Peeing on the stove, bed, or other unusual locations might be their attempt to mark a territory. Cats who stop using their litterbox in favor of odd places could also be telling you that there are not enough litterboxes in the house. Additionally, peeing outside of their litterbox can indicate that they are feeling stressed and anxious.
2. Dog having accidents in the house
One of the most common signs of stress in dogs is the sudden onset of accidents in the house. Dogs love routine, and changing their environment can disrupt their most basic bathroom habits. Moving, in particular, can cause stress-related accidents as they struggle to adjust to new bathroom spots. Patiently reinforcing potty training and re-establishing a consistent routine can help with this behavior.
3. Dog suddenly chewing things
Chewing serves as a coping mechanism, helping dogs release pent-up tension and anxiety. Suddenly finding your dog chewing on shoes, furniture, or other items they previously ignored could result from stress. To address this behavior, provide plenty of appropriate chew toys and be sure your dog gets enough physical and mental exercise. Taking your dog for “sniff walks,” where you allow them to stop and smell many different things, can be physically and mentally stimulating!
4. Cat hiding or running away from you
Cats are territorial, which means they get deeply attached to their environment. If you’ve recently moved to a new place, their strong attachment to your former territory can lead to stress. Hiding or running away is their way of seeking safety until they feel comfortable again. Providing a quiet and secure space for your cat, along with familiar objects, can aid in their adjustment to the new surroundings.
5. Cat or dog losing hair
Both cats and dogs can experience hair loss due to stress. This phenomenon often occurs in response to significant changes like moving or introducing another pet into the home. The stress disrupts their regular grooming routine, leading to patchy hair loss. Regular grooming, a balanced diet, and a calm environment can aid in reducing hair loss.
6. Animal staring into space
Have you ever caught your pet gazing into nothing? It might feel like they’re seeing something that you can’t! Don’t call the paranormal investigators quite yet. This vacant stare can be a sign of stress-induced disorientation. When pets feel overwhelmed or anxious, they might space out to escape the situation. Creating a calm and quiet space and engaging in comforting activities can help bring them back to the present.
Why is My Pet Stressed?
Even though they don’t have demanding jobs or organic chemistry homework, pets can feel stress and discomfort like humans. This stress can manifest in different weird behaviors that can be confusing and concerning. Typically, pets become stressed when their environment or routine changes. A few causes of that could be:
- You and your pet moved recently
- There’s a new pet in the house
- You introduced a new roommate, significant other, or child into the house
- Your work schedule changed
- You switched from WFH to in-office
- Recent dietary changes
While not all of these are things you can control, finding the source of your pet’s stress is the first step in solving it.
Moving is Hard, But Renting Furniture with CORT Isn’t!
Moving is stressful for everyone, cats and dogs included. They don’t have the benefit of understanding where they are or why they’re there! Additionally, they can pick up on their owner’s stress — and escalate it.
When it comes time to move, though you may not be able to talk it through with your fur-friend, CORT is here to help. With a wide selection of flexible furniture packages, you can find exactly what you need to make your house feel like a home, no matter how temporary it might be. Simply build your package online or in-store, schedule delivery, and let us take care of the rest. Renting furniture with CORT means less stress for you, which hopefully translates to less stress for your furry friends! Get started at your local CORT showroom or online today.