Can Cat Pheromones Affect Humans?
If you have ever considered purchasing a pheromone related product (Click here for 3 of the Best Pheromone Collars for Aggressive Cats) or just even curious about them. Chances are if you are like me, you wondered, could this affect me? Let me explain…
Can cat pheromones affect humans? No, cat pheromones cannot affect humans. Pheromones are species-specific. Meaning that human pheromones will only affect humans and cat pheromones will only affect cats. There is no risk of them being affected by different species.
Now you know that cat pheromones can’t affect humans, let’s delve deeper to understand exactly what these pheromones are. How they affect cats, what triggers them and also dispel some myths about it.
What are Pheromones?
Pheromones can be quite confusing to explain and understand. But, let me explain to the best of my ability.
Firstly, pheromones are not any kind of medication. It is a natural chemical that animals produce.
As briefly discussed earlier, they are species-specific. So, humans have this, cats have this, in fact, even bees have this.
Effectively, the pheromone chemical results in a reaction from the animal depending on the situation.
This reaction can fall into a few categories, as follows:
- Sexual reaction
- Aggressive reaction
- Territorial reaction
Let me explain using an example…
Cats release a pheromone when they are marking their territory. For example, cats may urinate on a piece of furniture as a way to warn other cats “This is mine”.
When they do this a pheromone chemical is released which will indicate to other cats that this is their territory. Are you with me?
Let’s focus on more aggressive pheromones. If a bear raided a honeypot. The bees will let out an aggressive pheromone to alert all the other workers that they are being attacked. This will alert them that they need to defend their queen.
How do cats use these pheromones?
Cats have a few areas in their body which they use to excrete these pheromones. In particular:
- Paw pads
- and Perennial region
They are all used for a number of different reasons. Such as, making the opposite sex aware that they’re ready to mate.
Let’s look at another example…
Cats sometimes scratch with their claws on the furniture. This is to mark their territory. When they do this not only do they leave a visible mark, there is a scent left behind and pheromones are released.
These pheromones send a message to other cats. Simply warning them that this is another cats territory.
What are facial pheromones?
According to Wikipedia, Facial pheromones are used by cats to indicate an object as being “checked” and familiar. The actual pheromone itself is released by rubbing against an object or a person.
Once the pheromones are released it will indicate to other cats, or that cat in particular, that this object or person is familiar.
A good way to explain this is with an example, comparing this behavior to us humans…
Let’s say for instance you entered a new hotel room. To make yourself comfortable you may put down some familiar objects such as family photos or an ornament that means something special to you, right?
This lets you know, and other humans know, that this hotel room is familiar to you.
However, for a cat, it doesn’t have these objects, so it will rub against this new piece of furniture (and release pheromones) to indicate that it finds it safe and familiar.
What things will pheromones not help with?
You can actually purchase pheromone related products on the market such as the popular Feliway diffuser. The goal is to relieve your cat if it feels stressed or anxious.
The problem with these products is the expectation from customers. They expect these products to be able to cure any issue with their cats.
However, there are certain things that these pheromone products cannot help a cat with such as:
- Issues not related to stress.
- Health-related problems.
- Adverse behavioral problems caused by lack of resources.
Issues not related to stress
These products cannot help with anything that is not directly related to stress. This is quite broad, but you need to understand that it is designed for stress and anxiety issues.
So, anything outside of these parameters is not realistic. For example, let’s assume your cat has a bad habit of chewing up your work shirts, this product will not help with that.
Health Related Issues
If your cat has any kind of health-related issue, these pheromone products cannot help either. If there is a known health issue your first call should be to your vet to check on your cat.
Behavioral related issues caused by a lack of resources
Any behavioral problems your cat has, that is caused by your lack of resources, will also not be covered by this.
For example, issues that include your cat soiling or urinating in your house which is a direct result of your cat not having the correct facilities. Such as no litter tray.
Can cat pheromone products really help cat stress?
According to The Honest kitchen, there have been independent studies that have been drafted which have proven that these pheromone products can actually help cats with stress-related problems.
However, some of these sources are backed by product manufacturers, so it’s hard to say if they are biased or not.
According to the journal of medical scientists, who conducted a one-month clinical trial. On cats that had urine related problems, 37% were found to be completely cured and another 40% were found to show improvements.
Can pheromone related products modify the behavior of your cat?
There is no real hard and fast evidence. But it has been reported that if your cat has anxiety based issues then these pheromone related products may be able to help with it.
Do cats give off a weird smell when they are scared? Yes, it has been proven that if a cat is feeling scared they can excrete a fluid from their anal glands. This may give off an unpleasant smell which would lead to the questions of why they smell like this.
Can cats detect sadness? Yes, they can, in fact, they say that they can detect facial expressions such as if you appear to be angry happy or sad. In recent studies, it has been observed that cats are more receptive and wanting to spend time with owners that expressed smiley inviting facial expressions. As opposed to an angry frown.
What is a cat pheromone spray? Like a cat diffuser plug-in. It is cat pheromones in a spray. This is for convenience, so you can apply it. The idea is the pheromones in the spray can calm a stressed-out cat. It is supposed to change its behavior based on the chemicals, as discussed earlier.
Can these Pheromone products help my cat to stop peeing in the house? if your cat is peeing (click here to see 9 reasons why your cat is peeing in the house) in the house. There can be many reasons. If it is related to stress or anxiety, there is a chance that these products could help.
However, if it is due to your lack of resources, such as you have neglected to provide the facilities for your cat to pee in an acceptable manner, then no, it won’t help you.
What is a pheromone collar? A pheromone collar is similar to the spray or diffuser, concept wise. Essentially it is a way of providing pheromones to your cat, in an effort to calm her from stress-related issues.
The collar is a convenient way to apply these pheromones. Especially for those people that prefer not to use a spray or a diffuser plugin device that we have discussed earlier in this article. Again, it won’t solve all your problems, but it is another proposed solution using pheromones.