Schertz Animal Hospital’s Blog
Fact or Fiction? Whisker Fatigue in Cats
We’re understanding animals more and more. Not so long ago, we held many misconceptions about how they think, feel, and love. Sometimes, though, we learn things that are a little difficult to wrap our heads around. Recently, a term called whisker fatigue in cats has begun to make its rounds. Join Schertz Animal Hospital in deciding whether this novel idea is fact or far fetched fiction.
The Almighty Whisker
Your cat’s whiskers are, without a doubt, a complicated organ. While they may appear to just be long hairs, they’re truly an essential part of how felines interact with the world.
Whiskers are more properly known as vibrissae. These long, thick hairs are anchored in a bed of nerves that help your cat navigate his or her world. The modern housecat has different needs than a lion, but the whisker is important nonetheless. Vibrissae help your cat:
- Understand his or her surroundings in dim lighting
- Orient in tight spaces
- Provide a visual metering system to aid in jumping
- Pick up on changes in air currents, alerting your cat to movement
- Determine the position of his or her prey when delivering fatal blows
- Protect the eyes by triggering the blink reflex
- Communicate with us and other cats
The more we learn, the more we understand how important whiskers are to our feline friends. In fact, we know that cats whose whiskers have been damaged or cut seem to be more anxious and experience higher levels of stress.
The Verdict on Whisker Fatigue in Cats
We can agree on the fact that whiskers are extremely important. Recently, however, whisker fatigue in cats has been used to describe the apparent stress cats can feel when their senses are bombarded by input from the whiskers.
Reportedly, the biggest culprits of whisker fatigue in cats are the deep food bowls and water dishes that we offer our four legged housemates.
While this sensory input may be troublesome to our more sensitive kitty companions, whisker fatigue in and of itself is likely an exaggeration. As we understand more about cat behavior, we’re coming to realize it’s probably more the lifestyle we ask our pets to participate in that is stressful.
By nature, cats are outdoor, solitary animals that we’ve decided to bring indoors and force into our pack. Taking steps to reduce environmental stress and enrich your pet’s environment are an important part of responsible cat ownership. This may include providing a flowing water source and feeding from a flatter surface. Remember, combating whisker fatigue in cats is just a small part of making them feel welcome in our homes. Please ask us if you’d like to know more about how to keep your cat happy and healthy.
Awesome, caring, sympathetic and pets are Number One! — D.O
I LOVE Dr. Mossberg. He and the staff are Amazing and SOOO CARING! They are the BEST — M. Lerma
Dr. Mossburg is WONDERFUL! He is so patient! Answers all my questions. I don't feel rushed. He is just so awesome with our Sophie! — S. Cobarruvias
This is the only place I trust with my girl. They always take great care of my Yorkie. — A Byrd
We can't say enough about Schertz Animal Hospital. Dr. Rodriguez and the whole staff are wonderful and so caring. — P. Ring
This is a wonderful animal hospital. Will highly recommend them for anyone who loves and cares about their pets. — B. Lewis
Have taken our pets there for years. Dr. R. Is the best. We appreciate him and the rest of his hard working staff. — C. Yeary
These are our first pets and first ever Vet visit. We are very pleased with the attention, knowledge, and quality of care. Very pleased with our decision!. — J. Tibbetts
We love the care the staff provides, they are big enough to provide services without having to wait long for an appointment, but still make you feel like family. Love this place. — T. Ha
Took my cat in today on an emergency basis and they were so helpful and kind. They have done what they can for him. I have a dog too and this is the only place I will be taking her to. Best vet we have ever been too. — L. Hamilton
Exceptional customer service and great care of my Sammy! Dr. Rodriguez "Dr. R" is the BEST! — A. Garcia
We absolutely love Schertz Animal Hospital for our puppy! They are so caring and take good care of our Bella. — P. Willard
The entire staff is friendly to me and my Bradley. I feel that my Bradley is in good hands. — A. Cano
Love Schertz Animal Hospital. The staff are all friendly and helpful. Dr. Mossburg is thorough and caring. We have taken 3 of our rescues there. Most recently our 7 year old Rottweiler we rescued. They have always taken excellent care of them. — A. Peterson
Schertz Animal Hospital really cares about your pet. They know their stuff. They been in Schertz for many years. All the doctors really know how to relate to us as they are pet owners too. I highly recommend them for all your Veterinary needs. You won't be sorry. SAH thank you for taking such great care of my Service Dog. — K. Duchess
Schertz Animal Hospital is a group of some of the most selfless people. They have been so attentive and caring to my pups, literally dropping everything to care for their needs. I am blessed and ever so grateful to have this team a part of my little family's life. Alley and Noah looooove you all! Y'all are the bomb dot com! Keep on keepin' on ladies and gents! — A.H
Dr. Mossberg and his assistant, Terri, are outstanding! Rusty can be difficult and they are so patient and kind. My husband and I really appreciate that they go the extra mile! Thank you!!! — T. & M. Taylor
I am totally satisfied with the practices, procedures, and service currently in place and have no recommendation for improvement. — R. Schutte
The front staff are awesome and have great attitudes. Very friendly and approachable. — R. & D. Carter
This is the one place that I feel completely safe with taking my Jasmine too. All of you take good care of her. Thank you. — C. & J. Smith
I appreciate being able to walk in (I did call first) with no appt. The doctor was booked but he still took care of my pet. Kudos to Dr. Rodriguez!! — S. & C. Mag
You are doing everything super good!!! Keep it up!!!! — W. Williams
I have never had a vet office that treats its patients so well, and throughly explains all diagnosis and possible treatment. I have always bragged on this office and will continue to do so. — M. & N. Heller
Always professional, clean atmosphere. — J. Wilson
Love how Dr Rodriguez has a passion for what he does - it makes a huge difference! The staff is friendly and caring - thank you. — Anonymous
Very nice facility that is well kept up. Whenever one of my pets needs medical care,I know I can rely on Schertz Animal Hospital to provide excellent care. — D. & R. Lanier
Dr. Rodriguez and his staff are always pleasant, caring and I feel very confident in the care given to all of our pets! :) — M. & J. Hild