I have heard sooo many good things about Feliway, when I got Maggie, and again when I got Yuan, I bought some. It’s synthetic feline pheremones – like the comforting scents they leave behind by rubbing their cheeks on things to mark them, and make things “familiar”. It’s supposed to be great at helping them feel more comfortable in a new place, around new cats, etc. They have an aerosol can kind (which my mother once tried and I didn’t care for because I could actually smell that one myself and it wasn’t to my liking. However, my mother swore she couldn’t smell a thing. Perhaps it’s my super vegetarian nose. They say your sense of smell is better when you’re a vegetarian and I’ve had many instances where I could smell things that others could not, so, I call it my Super Vegetarian Nose), an impregnated collar kind, and a plug in kind (like air freshener plug-ins). Having already vetoed the aerosol, I opted for the plug-in (also figuring it would disperse throughout my apartment – it covers most of my square footage). I have to say I used it for a while under the thought process of “Wow – if it’s this bad WITH the feliway, how bad would it be if I stopped using it?!” But when I finally stopped refilling the plug-in, I didn’t notice a difference. I bought it again with Yuan, figuring, different cats take to different things, but I only used it for three days before the diffuser part of the plug in started to smoke! It wasn’t dirty, but I was too afraid to leave it plugged in. There went $40 (I had a coupon, normally the starter kit is around $50, at least at PetSmart) down the drain. The previous one I had had ALSO had started to smoke, but that was after six months and it looked perhaps a little dirty so I thought it had just gotten something on it (and I belatedly discovered that you’re supposed to replace the main diffuser part every six months or so, anyway). So for my kitties, I didn’t notice a difference (though it wasn’t really in play long enough with Yuan to see if it would have aided in his transition). However I have heard lots of success stories from other cat people with it, so take my experience with a grain of salt. I still recommend giving it a try.
On the other hand, I also tried the impregnated collar once they came out after my mother told me how much it had helped her nervous Nellie, Joshua (the poor guy came to her declawed on all four paws – I didn’t even know they did that!! – and was understandably traumatized between having no defenses besides teeth, and moving to a new house, with new people, a resident cat, and a dog). So I bought just one to give it a go, and gave it to Maggie. It’s purple, has some powder on it (that is harmless, it’s how they get the feliway on there, I think, and it rubs off over time), and has the texture of a flea collar. THAT worked. It really did notably help her stress levels. I suppose because it was right there under her nose the whole time. My only problem is that Maggie, like her siblings, is a collar ninja. You can put it on her, turn around, and poof! It’s off. I tried adjusting the length and tightness and everything, but she just won’t keep one on for any length of time. I believe the best I got (the feliway collars last a month or two, as I recall) was a day or two before it was back off again. If I could get her to keep a collar on, I’d buy these all the time.
Speaking of, if anyone has any tips for getting your cats to keep their collars on (I tell them it’s a pretty necklace, and they still take them off), I’m all ears! Deidre used to keep hers on, but after the last one broke (it was a safety collar and the elastic part broke), she hasn’t been tolerating the new one (I got the closest resemblance I could find!). I think she figures if her siblings aren’t going to keep theirs on, she isn’t going to, either. Yuan broke the collar-off record by escaping his in twenty minutes once. I am just destined to have mischevious children. All three collars have been hanging on the wall with their harnesses and leashes for the past several months because I gave up trying! Perhaps I just need to be more pushy.
So, feliway collar, two paws up. Feliway spray, human veto if you have a sensitive nose (if not, spray away) but an anecdotal two paws up from others. Feliway plug in, another anecdotal two paws up from others, but no success for me.
And now for some kitteh cuteness of the day: