Keeping Cats Calm During Renovations (March 2019)

Conducting renovations, no matter how small they may be, can be a very stressful time for the cats in your home.

Cats are very territorial and like things how they like them – it’s just how they are, so renovations can mess up their claim to your home and cause an unfamiliar situation that will stress them out.

Renovating can cause your cat to need to, once again, establish that this is their territory. A cat will spray/mark with their urine, scratch things up, and react in many other ways to a changing environment.

Fortunately, there are ways to make the process of renovating much easier on both you and your cat.

You won’t have to worry about the state they’re in, so here are some things you can do.

Create a Safe Space Away from the Renovations

The best way to keep your cat’s sane during the renovations is to confine them to one room and make it a safe space for them.

Bring their litter box(es), food and water bowls, blankets, toys, and even the blanket from your bed.

Giving them their things, as well as things such as the blanket from your bed, that they are familiar with can help keep them calm.

I’ve heard of people putting their cats in their bathroom during this time without doing much else – don’t do that. You’ll open the door and they’ll fly out, visibly stressed out.

Make sure you have a piece of furniture, such as a chair with an open bottom or even their carrier, to ensure they have a place to hide comfortably.

Your bedroom is the best place to do this. If that’s not possible, then make sure the room your cats are put into with their things is a place of familiarity and comfort.

Tire Your Kitties Out

Before renovations are due to start for the day, play with them for as long as it takes to tire them out.

Doing this will not help them destress completely, but it will help take some of the stress edge off, allowing them to, hopefully, sleep through most of it.

If you’re going to be present in your home during the renovations, however, staying with your kitties and playing with them can also be a big help, too.

Drown Out Noise With Distractions

Leaving your television, fan, or even some music on can make a big difference in helping your cat not to stress out too much during renovations.

Any distraction, in general, can save your cat from hours of stress and panic.

Keep Your Normal Routine Going

One of the best ways to not stress your cat out during renovation is to keep you regular, consistent routine going.

For example, clean the litter box(es) as you normally would and stick to your regular feeding schedule.

You’d be surprised how much going off of a regular routine effects your kitties.

Minimize Overbearing Smells

Certain smells, such as paint fumes, can create stress without your cat even seeing what’s happening.

To minimize smells that are going to be overbearing for them, stick a towel under the door, if possible.

Let Them Reintroduce Themselves

When all is said and done and life can go back to normal, don’t force your kitties to go and see what was going on.

Simply open the door of the room they’ve been in and let them go explore on their own.


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