Reducing Anxiety In Cats with Clipnosis

Easing anxiety in cats may be as easy as clipping your laundry to the clothes line. A technique called "clipnosis" allows for a pain free way to restrain your cat, keeping her calm under stress.

It can be used in the vet's office for procedures like drawing blood or vaccinations. Or, it could be used instead of this food technique for clipping your cat's claws or other stressful situations.

The technique is called pinch-induced behavioral inhibition. Like rubbing an alligator's belly or placing a snapping turtle on its back to immobilize it, this technique seems to invoke a scruff response. This is the relaxed pose that kittens take when their mothers carry them by the neck.

When I first researched clipnosis, the only videos I could find on it were in Spanish, but more videos have surfaced. At one point, a video entitled, "How to Deactivate a Cat" went viral.

Notice that they're using regular binder clips. Ohio State has patented a clip, presumably to be marketed to pet owners, but I haven't seen any for sale yet.

Apparently, not all cats will respond to this, and it's less effective if the cat has already become agitated.

Obviously, this is a short term method to reduce a cat's anxiety, and not for use for general anxiety. Feliway diffusers may help to reduce general anxiety daily, as well as help with litter box problems or house soiling, or aggression.

If your cat has to travel a short distance, such as to the vet, try spraying Feliway on a blanket and inside the carrier itself. For a more thorough discussion on reducing anxiety in cats while traveling, click here.

Other methods, such as drug therapy, homeopathy, or Rescue Remedy may also help with anxiety in cats. As always, consult with your veterinarian before use.

By the way, that thing about rubbing the alligator's belly is a bit of an illusion. Placing an alligator on its back reduces blood flow to the brain, and the animal becomes immobile. Rubbing the belly is just for the sake of the audience.

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