HomeCat Behaviorcat emotionsanxietyCan cats be claustrophobic?

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Can cats be claustrophobic? — 6 Comments

  1. I have been trapping/rescuing, rehabilitating and re-homing feral, abandoned cats since 1992. I have yet to come across a cat that did not become a very happy indoor cat. Very feral cats don’t react very much in traps – their reactions are usually those of total submission “so what else will you do to me?” Some may thrash around in surprise, then settle down; others just cower quietly. There is no standard reaction – every case and cat is different, depending on whether they were truly feral, or abandoned and regressed. We also had a cat who insisted on being fed at 3 AM; if we closed the bedroom door, he relentlessly scratched and banged on it until I finally gave in. Had I known then what I know now, I would have kept a bowl of food for him in the bedroom – no such problems now with many more cats.

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  5. The human body can make the mind claustrophobic.

    It happened to me in 2005.I was taken suddenly & seriously ill. As part of the illness, my right lung was squashed flat by fluid. This is called a pleural effusion, it is something the chest does when lungs are under threat from a nearby source of infection or physical injury. The fluid forms a cushion around the deflated lung and a barrier to pathogens.

    Until the ICU doc told me, I had no idea where the sudden terror that overwhelmed me when a curtain was slightly drawn, a door or window closed, came from or why.

    The sudden onset of claustrophobia was a normal response to oxygen shortage. As the illness was so devastating, keeping the claustrophobia going strongly was my brain translating the need for protection to my mind, so I would be compelled to stay in wide open spaces where there was a lot of oxygen.

    Claustrophobia was one of the most frightening
    experiences I have ever had. When conscious, I was just rational enough to understand what I was being told. How much more terrifying for a cat who is at a double disadvantage in that cats do not speak human, nor humans speak cat?

    I hope no other species but us get claustrohobia, it is truly terrifying.

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