With its patent-pending design, the new Thundershirt for Cats applies gentle, constant pressure to the torso. This pressure has a dramatic calming effect for cats if they are anxious or fearful. Cat owners and veterinarians are amazed by the positive impact a Thundershirt can have with cats.
Until now, there just hasn’t been a well-designed, inexpensive solution commonly used for cat anxiety. Thundershirt is changing that!
Thundershirt is an excellent treatment for many types of cat anxiety and fear issues. For many anxieties, we recommend just putting on a Thundershirt and observing the results. You may very well see significant improvement for vet visits, travel, grooming, general fearfulness and other anxiety issues with no training. If your cat appears to not want to move in her Thundershirt (what we term the “Freeze & Flop”), don’t worry! Please see our FAQs down below for instructions on how to work on this. For more complicated anxiety cases, we also recommend using Thundershirt as part of a behavior modification program.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What training is required for using a Thundershirt for anxiety and fear issues?
For most cases...none! Just put a Thundershirt onto your cat and you will likely see improvement in their symptoms. However, cats are very sensitive to having anything put onto their bodies and the “Freeze & Flop” is a common initial response. When you first put on Thundershirt, if your cat appears to “freeze up” or refuse to move, please see the “Freeze & Flop” section on this page. For many issues, like travel anxiety or vet visits, a Thundershirt may be all you need for success with your cat. For some more serious anxiety cases, such as severe separation anxiety, you should consult a good trainer for how to integrate Thundershirt into a training program.
- My cat freezes up, won’t move or falls over in her Thundershirt. What should I do?
When first wearing a Thundershirt, some cats will behave as if they are immobilized and may even “fall over”. Don’t worry! The Thundershirt is not causing discomfort; they just need time to adjust to the new sensations. Cats are amazingly sensitive to touch and sometimes require a little more adjustment time in the beginning. But this also means that many are even more responsive than dogs to the gentle, calming pressure of a Thundershirt! If your cat initially appears uncomfortable or does the “Freeze & Flop” - please do the following:- Put the Thundershirt onto your cat with very light pressure and for 5 to 10 minutes, try to engage your cat in play with a favorite toy or a laser pointer. If your cat continues to look uncomfortable or still refuses to move freely, remove the Thundershirt for a short period and then repeat the process two to three times. If still no success, try repeating the process with longer breaks in between (e.g. wait a day and then retry).
- Can I wash and dry my Thundershirt? How can I remove hair from the fastener hooks?
Thundershirt is made with durable, washable fabric. When necessary, Thundershirt may be washed in a regular cycle using regular laundry detergent and cold water. Hang to dry. If necessary, to remove cat hair from your Thundershirt’s fastener hooks, we recommend using a standard “slicker” brush. A couple of strokes and the fastener hooks will be nearly completely hair-free.
- How long can I leave a Thundershirt on my cat?
Thundershirt is designed to be safe to leave on your cat for extended periods of time when appropriate for the situation or issue that you are addressing. Thundershirt is made out of lightweight, breathable fabric, so overheating is very rarely an issue. When properly sized and properly put on with a comfortably snug fit, your cat should be very comfortable for extended periods. If you will be allowing your cat to wear a Thundershirt for extended periods over two hours at a time, during the initial periods, we do recommend removing the Thundershirt frequently to check for any signs of irritation points. Irritation points are very rare, but best to be cautious.
- Is it safe to leave my cat unsupervised while wearing her Thundershirt?
It is typically safe to leave a cat unsupervised while wearing a Thundershirt. HOWEVER…before leaving your cat unsupervised for extended periods longer than one hour, we strongly recommend the following:
- Make sure that your cat is comfortable and moving freely.
- Make sure that your cat is using the litter box without issues.
- Make sure that your cat is not tending to slide her front paws into the neck hole and possibly getting stuck.
- We do NOT recommend having an outdoor cat wear a Thundershirt outdoors to avoid reducing her ability to escape from any potential predators.