How Do You Keep Your Pet Calm: 3 Products for Stress & Cystitis

Calming and de-stress products for cats, dogs, horses, birds, mammals, birds

Sometimes, our pets need a little help from stress, but how do you keep them calm? Of course, if you have concerns about your pet’s health, seek veterinary advice to rule out any severe or life-threatening health problems. That aside, this article also included a product that stopped my cat’s cystitis. You can buy specially designed litter enabling you to take a urine sample at home; from this, your vet can analyse the urine. Following a course on a product that combats cystitis, Tabitha’s vet gave the all-clear for cystitis.

1: Pet Remedy Calming Spray

A simple indoor spray containing essential oils contributes to de-stressing and calming your pet. Suitable for cats, dogs, birds, horses, rabbits, ferrets and rodents. An assortment of other products are available.

2: Zylkene

Capsules with a powder content that can be mixed easily with food. It contains a natural calming supplement with an ingredient called casein derived from a protein in milk. Available for dogs and cats.

3: Feliway Feline Cystease

Available as a minimum of 30 capsules with a powder content that can be easily mixed with food or flavoured sauce. It helps ease the stress that causes painful cystitis in cats. Tabitha’s cystitis stopped in days and she was given the all-clear from a vet.

Important: Please get a diagnosis from your vet. This is to ensure painful urination or unable to pee is not because of a more serious problem such as a urinary blockage.

Pet Remedy is a spray for the room and can be rubbed on your pet

States that it works ‘alongside the brain’s natural ‘messengers’ called neurotransmitters, which work by telling the nerve receiving the message either to calm (via GABA pathway) or get ‘fired up’. In times of stress or anxiety, the nerves get overstimulated, which leads on to the many symptoms we see in our stressed pets.’

Pet Remedy
stress in cats can result in extreme overgrooming but Pet Remedy calming and de-stressing spray is recommended
An example of a cat that has overgroomed

Startingly, Tabitha pulled out half her body fur during the first Covid-19 lockdown. Before the appointment, I purchased this product from an accredited online retailer and sprayed inside Tabitha’s carrier hours before her appointment to settle her.

Are Pet Remedy Natural De-Stress and Calming Spray worth the money?

The 200ml spray cost me £14 (2020 prices but now £13.49) plus postage. Of course, what works for one animal may not work for another. Pet Remedy sell various products that are available to suit different animals.

  • Plug-in diffuser
  • Calming wipes
  • Battery operated atomiser
  • All in one kit
  • Travel essentials kit
  • New home kit
  • Training essentials kit (dogs)
  • Small mammal calming & bonding kit (rabbit, guinea pigs, hamsters, rats and mice)
  • Equine calming kit
  • Party season survival kit
  • Cat luxury grooming & massage kit
  • First aid for stress
  • Bandana calming kit (dogs)
  • Boredom buster foraging kit (dogs)
  • Pre-wash spray, shampoo and conditioner (300ml bottles)
  • Grooming kit
  • Calming pet pad

Since buying Pet Remedy, Tabitha developed high blood pressure and lost 90% of her eyesight. She lost 95% of her hearing too. At first, there were fortnightly veterinary visits and, eventually every three months. Instead of buying calming wipes, I sprayed Pet Remedy on a tissue or my hands and wiped it around her muzzle and head. It calmed her down during the journey and I believe it helped reduce stress and possibly her blood pressure.

Testing Pet Remedy Natural De-Stress and Calming Spray

It is easy to assume that spraying it over bedding is the best place. But spraying in prime spots where your cat or dog walks in the home is a good idea. I have never used the spray with other animals, so you must judge the best way forward here. In general, stressed animals need a calm and quiet environment; sometimes, it is about working out the cause. Lots of love, cuddles and reassurance help enormously as well. My vet once told me that our cats could react to our emotions.

The outcome for Tabitha
Locations I sprayed:
Litter tray
Across the stairs
Across the internal door threshold
Across the back door threshold
I did not spray the formula on her bedding and instead concentrated on areas in the house where I knew she would have to walk through it. I was delighted to see she did not avoid these scented areas
‘Use every 1 to 2 hours
I sprayed daily only
Within a couple of days, I noticed fewer clumps of fur on the floor, and so a decline in overgrooming Tabitha
From bald to fluffy again
The overgrooming was extreme this time and had massive bald areas n her body. I continued spraying daily
Tabitha eventually pulled out less fur until, eventually, she stopped. I continued providing more cuddles and actively prevented myself from feeling sad around her. I think both contributed to having a slightly less emotional cat on this occasion and subsequent re-growth of fur

What are the signs of stress in your pet?

The following are signs of stress but can relate to other reasons or illnesses. If you have concerns about your pet, please seek veterinary advice first.

Spraying or soilingBehaviour changes, including hissing & grumbling
ScratchingLack of interaction & hiding
Pupils dilatedLoss of appetite

Any of the Pet Remedy products listed may suit your pet.

Zylkene can be mixed into food and easily administered

Zylkene capsules for cat and dog stress relief when challenging situations turn their world upside down, Zylkene calms them inside & outside the home.

Zyklene calming aid for cats and dogs
I purchased these for my cats

Zylkene was the first calming product I purchased in 2008 when moving house. It can be difficult getting cats and dogs to take medication, so what I love about this product is the capsule pulls apart. The powder can be mixed with food or pet sauce. Alternatively, Zyklene produces dog chews but are expensive. Instead, you can buy SettleMe with 30 smokey bacon chews for cats and dogs for between £10 to £12.99. SettleMe capsules are the cheaper option, with 50 for £11.99 to £14.99.

You can pop a capsule in your pet’s mouth, but I think the capsule is too big for a cat and a small dog. It usually recommends mixing in water, but it settles on the surface, so mixing with food is the best option.

The company recommends giving Zyklene daily two days before a stressful event. But your pet can suffer anxiety with anything and when Tabitha had an episode, Zyklene calmed her.

Is Zyklene worth buying for a cat or dog with anxiety?

As an owner of a very stressed cat, yes, Zyklene is worth buying to help your pet relax, but if too expensive, then SettleMe is the better choice cost-wise.

Buy Zyklene from VioVet.

Buy SettleMe from VioVet.

Testing Zyklene with a cat

Tabitha thankfully loves Webbox Lick-E-Licks cat sauce, and for me, it was the easiest method to administer by mixing in the powder.

ProductThe outcome for Tabitha
Pulling apart the capsule:
Some capsules are hard to pull apart but
Zyklene capsules are easy.
Ensure you pull apart over a bowl
Cats are savvy and notorious for refusing what they are suspicious of. I emptied the powder into a bowl and quickly mixed it with cat sauce. Tabitha devoured the contents of her bowl without question.
Mixing the powder with water:
Zyklene also recommends sprinkling it into the water and it will dissolve
To be honest, the powder sat on top of the water surface and did not dissolve. Tabitha sniffed the water and walked away. I recommend trying a little powder in water first.
How quickly did Zyklene start working?
A few days
A week
Admittedly, Zyklene did not work as quickly as I hoped. Pet Remedy acted faster, which positively impacted on Tabitha. Zyklene took a few days, but it was successful

What are the signs of stress?

I have covered signs of stress in the Pet Remedy section, so I want to clarify that if you have deep concerns about your pet’s health, please seek veterinary advice in the first instance.

Feliway Cystease can stop cystitis

“… stress is considered the main factor in urinary health.”

Cats with cystitis can feel better taking feliway cystease
Helps cats with cystitis

Cystitis is also known as Idiopathic Cystitis. Idiopathic means unknown causes. Cystitis affects a cat’s bladder and urinary tract and is caused by stress.

I paid about £200 for cystitis tests at our local veterinary practice, so I researched online for a product to help stop the condition and found Feliway Cystease. Because the vet analysed Tabitha’s urine but did not prescribe medication to stop the condition, I decided to buy Feliway Cystease. At the time, it was £6.99. It worked. Feline Cystease saved me a lot of money and is easy to use.

  • 30 capsules £8.25
  • 300 capsules £69.99 – recommended for rescue shelters

As your cat is stressed, and to save money, you can collect urine at home with a simple kit. Then take the sample to your vet for analysis.

If under the Pet Health Club, you get a discount for a particular cat litter and a free annual analysis. KatKor non-absorbent cat litter is easy to use, but if you are squeamish, you may not like syringing cat urine. You can buy the kit for under £3.50 online, or from a veterinary practice. In 2020, it cost me £5 from my clinic

Buy KatKor from VioVet.

Is Feliway Cystease worth purchasing for your cat?

If your vet has diagnosed cystitis, I recommend trying this product but speak to your vet if you feel it necessary. It depends on whether your vet will prescribe medication to stop cystitis. Tabitha’s vet kept wanting samples, and I couldn’t allow Tabitha to keep being in pain.

Feliway Cystease is for cats only.

Buy Feliway Cystease from VioVet.

Testing Feliway Cystease with a cat

ProductThe Outcome for Tabitha
Administering the capsule:
Give whole
Empty the capsule and mix it with wet food
Empty the capsule and mix it with cat sauce
Cystitis is from anxiety and stress, so administering a capsule the size of paracetamol would cause fear and resistance from Tabitha

For a cat on dry food only, this presents a problem

Despite being on a diet of hypoallergenic and anallergenic dry food, I mix Cystease powder in a little Weebox cat sauce
The effectiveness and speed of helping ease cystitis:
After 2 or 3 days of a daily dose (she weighed 3kg), cystitis eased and then stopped
Should Cystease be used with another Feliway product?
Feliway recommends using it alongside a Classic Diffuser with a continuous dose of Cystease for a week. Then
repeat if a stressful situation is forthcoming
Tabitha would get stressed at home without there being any event. And to be honest, I never purchased or used any other Feliway products alongside Cystease. Cystease results were very positive.

What are the signs of cystitis in cats?

The following are signs that your cat may have cystitis.

  • Crying in pain when trying to urinate
  • Passing blood with any urine
  • Squatting in places other than the litter tray
  • Running from one place to another, squatting
  • Changes in behaviour, mood swings
  • If a male cat is unable to pass urine, this is a life-saving emergency, so please contact your vet

As an example of a cat with cystitis, Tabitha squatted around the house and urinated twice on my bed duvet.

Please visit my YouTube channel for Feliway Cystease and the Current Deals page.


I am not a veterinary professional. This article does not give medical advice. If you have any concerns about your pet, I urge you to seek advice from a qualified veterinary surgeon in the first instance.

Poppy’s Pets has a column in an East Yorkshire newspaper


The reason I write and make YouTube videos is to help you and your pets from my experiences, and to take you through a journey of Green Living from worm composting and bokashi.

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