Some cats look as if they are grieving or even crying. But can they do that? In the course of our lives, there are always extreme situations that make us sad. Can pets feel the same? Can cats really cry? My article provides answers to these as well as other questions.
Psychologists refer to suffering as an emotion that people feel in response to a loss in their lives or when they feel pain. This emotion is especially strong when we lose a life partner, family member, or friend, but also when we get hurt.
But we can also feel pain when we are fired from work. We cry even when a loved object is broken or lost.
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Whether it’s tears of joy or tears of sadness, you’ve probably cried at least once in your life. What happens if your cat has wet eyes? Do cats cry because they are sad?
Don’t worry, tears in cats are not a sign of sadness. Because, strictly speaking, cats do not cry for emotional reasons.
Like the rest of mammals, cats are able to produce tears, but they respond to physiological discomfort and not altered emotional states. Allergies, foreign bodies, or colds, one of the most common eye diseases in cats, can cause your cat’s tear glands to produce more tear fluid or tear ducts to swell.
Some diseases that can produce these secretions are as follows:
As we can see, there are several cases in which lacrimation is effective. If you see your cat “crying”, you should not worry about psychological reasons, but medical ones instead. A visit to the veterinarian is essential.
In 1872, Charles Darwin wrote the book “The expression of the emotions in man and animals”. In it, he published his observations that emotions between humans and animals, such as cats, can be very similar.
However, despite Darwin’s efforts, the question of whether animals can be sad has remained unanswered for a long time. It was only during the 20th and 21st centuries that science became more and more concerned with animal emotions.
A well-known researcher in animal suffering is Marc Bekoff, a former professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Colorado-Boulder. His passion was to explore the emotions of animals.
He found that dog brain imaging studies show that areas similar to those in the human brain function during certain states of emotional arousal. Thus, it is now known that animals exhibit emotional behaviors, just like us humans.
Just because cats don’t cry, it doesn’t mean they’re not sad. Primary emotions have been demonstrated in different groups of animals, and grief or sadness is one of them.
Thus, cats express their discontent and discomfort by meowing. Unlike humans, felines communicate their emotions by using their vocalization.
For example, kittens, when disturbed, hungry or cold, emit sounds to attract the attention of their mother. Some cats may emit sounds when changes occur in the home or when a new member appears that they do not know because this is how they try to express their dissatisfaction.
There are also many other physiological manifestations of sadness and depression in cats. Some of the symptoms of this nervous emotional state include lack of care, apathy, and decreased desire to eat, among others.
Human beings are the only animals capable of expressing their sadness through tears. This does not mean, in any case, that animals are not able to suffer and manifest negative emotions.
When it comes to becoming the owner of any type of pet, you need to pay attention to various physiological signs of the animal, because usually, the animals express their sadness by refusing food, by reduced activity, or by shedding.
In cats, meowing and other sounds can give you clues about your cat’s emotional state, but they’re not the only clues.
Certain behavioral traits, as well as ear bending or fur condition, are good signs to consider in order to figure out your pet’s emotional state.
When a cat feels emotional pain, you may notice the following signs:
So crying is not part of the behavioral repertoire of a sad cat.
Patience, calmness, and routine are the most important points if you want to help your grieving cat. First, sadness occurs when a familiar routine is disrupted. In other words, when the loss of a person significantly changes the life conditions of the cat.
Even if your cat doesn’t cry in the human sense, make her feel like you care about her. Make sure your cat continues to receive food at regular times. Talk to her and don’t hesitate to motivate her to play. You can also cheer her up with a toy.