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Veterinary Q & A - Feliway® Use in Cats

Pheromone-based behavior modification

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Herman Roosevelt Quinn - Cat Relaxing on a Rug Credit: Janet Tobiassen DVM

Herman Roosevelt Quinn - Cat Relaxing on a Rug

Credit: Janet Tobiassen DVM
What is Feliway®, anyway?
Feliway is a product that contains the synthetic version of the naturally occurring facial pheromones of cats.

What is a 'pheromone'?
A pheromone is a chemical marking agent excreted by cats to mark their territory and can server as an attractant to the opposite sex.

From Dictionary.com:

n : a chemical substance secreted externally by some animals (especially insects) that influences the physiology or behavior of other animals of the same species.

What is Feliway® used for?
Feliway®, and the related product, DAP® (Dog Appeasing Pheromone) has many touted uses, including, but not limited to, reducing or eliminating the following behaviors:

  • Urine marking
  • Aggression
  • Facial marking
  • Stress reduction at the veterinarian, groomer, kennel, or while traveling
  • Scratching on vertical surfaces

How is Feliway® used? Is it a medication?
Feliway comes in two forms: pump spray and plug-in room diffuser. Neither form is to be used on the cat directly!

The plug-in is simple, just plug it into a wall outlet and it lasts approximately 30 days, providing coverage for 500-650 square feet.

The spray is to be used on surfaces that the cat is marking. I also used some on an old towel and then laid the towel across "territorial areas" for my cats, such as clean (but unfolded) laundry.

But does Feliway® work?
This is the all-important question. I know people that love this product, others that haven't used it, and still others who say no way -- doesn't work. So what do the viewers of this site say?

Here are a few comments:

"I purchased and tried Feliway many years ago... must have been when it first came out here in California. I found that it didn't work at all. I have a multi-cat household and it just didn't work. The most it did was put me off a bit as it does have an odor and if you're sensitive to odors or have allergies to scents, this isn't a good product to be using." - J.Z.

"I've used Feliway and DAP. They are both wonderful. When I run out I see a difference in the cats and dogs. I'm a veterinarian." - D.S.

  • Compare prices for Feliway
  • Frequently Asked Questions about Feliway®
    Here are some FAQ resources for learning more:

    DAP for Dogs

    Photo: Herman Roosevelt Quinn - Relaxing on a Rug Credit: Janet Tobiassen Crosby DVM (Not under the influence of Feliway; a typical resting position for Herman.)

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