this is so lyla!
whenever i leave the house, or am away for the night, lyla cries whenever jessie retires to her room and is left alone [WITH buster, mind you]. she cries and cries [or so i hear ;)]. i feel really guilty pretty much everytime i leave. i've been doing a little research on separation anxiety in cats and some of the signs from petplace.com ring loud and clear...
- Over-attachment to the owner, following that person from room to room around the house.
- Distress as the owner prepares to depart (so-called pre-departure anxiety). This can take many forms but some of the more common presentations are meowing, sulking, apparent depression, slinking away, and hiding.
- Vocalization (crying, moaning, meowing) right after the owner has left (you might need to set a tape recorder to check this sign).
- Destructive behavior – rare, but some cats may claw and scratch door edges presumably in an attempt to escape from their solitary confinement.
- Exuberant greeting behavior – as if greeting a long lost friend that they did not expect to see ever again.
i included the ones that are the most true for her. since she's not 'making accidents' outside of the litterbox or more of the extreme signs, i don't think it's severe... but i think she still is anxious. when i was away for a week on vacation, they pretty much stopped eating and it took a week or so for both of the kitties to regain their appetite. i got the kittens when they were very young and were parted from their mother VERY early, another sign. lyla constantly reminds me of her early weaning separation by suckling on cookie monster.
i have found a few tips on various websites that I am going to try out...
- leaving on the radio/television
- ignoring the kitties 15-20 mins before leaving and when coming home to make the events less dramatic. [this is going to be SOOO hard for me. i say bye to each of the kitties like 3 times before i leave and am used to them running up on the bed when i get home and i hug them/pet/kiss/etc.]
i'm pretty sure that i can't/won't do ALL of the tips [some are intense]...like one site said keep cats out of the bedroom which is pretty much impossible with my current living situation.
has anyone else experienced separation anxiety with their kitty? any tips?
i thought the fact that lyla was obsessed with me was really cute and honestly made me feel good, but now i am nervous that she is mildly stressed. and that makes me stressed. i always feel so guilty leaving. gosh, can you imagine when i have KIDS? send me over any separation issues with pet owners tips you can find... cause i know I have it TOO!