It’s human to feel down, blue or even depressed sometimes. Believe it or not, your cat can feel this way, too. Behaviorists first recognized depression in cats in the 1990s.
“Cat depression is an abnormal behavior in which the cat shows a change in activity, change in vocalization and usually a decrease in appetite,” says veterinary behaviorist Katherine Houpt, director of the Animal Behavior Clinic at Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in Ithaca, N.Y. “Depression in cats is not very common, or at least it isn’t recognized as a quiet, less active cat doesn’t bother the owner.”
Cats can become depressed after a major disruption in their lives, such as moving, adding or losing a family member, or having their owner’s schedule change. The most common cause of depression in cats is the loss of a friend.