Your Guide to Using Feliway


This article is written by Pet Circle Veterinarian, Dr Teagan Lever BVSc (Hons) and was last updated by Dr Jacqui Victor BVSc MANZCVS (Medicine of Cats)

1. How Does Feliway Work?

2. Signs of Stress in Cats

3. When to Use Feliway

4. How Do You Use Feliway?

How Does Feliway Work?

FELIWAY is a synthetic version of the feline faical pheromone naturally left by cats when they rub against objects in their environment. This pheromone is usually released by your cat when they feel happy or content and is also used to mark territory. Feliway helps to reduce signs of stress such as urine spraying, scratching or hiding.

FELIWAY FRIENDS is a synthetic version of the cat appeasing pheromone (CAP) released by mother cats after birth to help their kittens feel safe and secure. These "harmony" messages help restore harmony between cats living together. Feliway Friends helps to reduce unwanted tension and conflicts, and promote harmony between cats living in multi-cat households.

Pet Circle veterinarian, Dr. Carla, discusses Feliway and how it works. See more helpful pet care videos on Pet Circle's Youtube Channel.

Signs of Stress in Cats

Signs of feline stress are usually subtle, and often antisocial behaviours can be the first indication that something is amiss.

Common behaviours of stressed cats include:

  • Urinary issues (eg urinating outside the litter box) such as cystits and urine spraying
  • Inappropriate scratching of furntiture
  • Fighting with other cats in the household
  • Decreased playing or hiding
  • Decreased appetite
  • Overgrooming
  • Aggression

When To Use Feliway

The first thing to consider is whether Feliway or Feliway Friends is best for your cat's situation:

  • FELIWAY is the best option if your kitty is showing signs of stress such as urine spraying, scratching or hiding. Feliway is also useful in situations such as travelling, visiting the vet or cattery, moving house or decorating, visitors or new household members. Feliway is available in a spray or diffuser.
  • FELIWAY FRIENDS is the best option if you are introducing a new cat to your existing cat, or if the cats in your multi-cat household are not getting along (eg hissing, fighting). Feliway Friends is available only as a diffuser.

Can I use both Feliway and Feliway Friends Together?

Yes! If you have multiple kitties in conflict that are also displaying stressful behaviours (which is not an uncommon!), then you can absolutely use Feliway and Feliway Friends at the same time.

Source: Ceva Animal Health Australia

How Do You Use Feliway?

Feliway & Feliway Friends Diffuser

Feliway and Feliway Friends are both available in diffusers, which operate in the same way. These diffusers are designed to be plugged into an electrical socket and left on continuously 24/7, covering a space of up to 70m2. Avoid placing diffusers behind furniture, doors or curtains or underneath shelves as this can make them less effective. Each diffuser refill will last for 30 days, depending on surrounding conditions.

Most cat owners see an improvement in their cats within 7 days. However as every cat is different, and their stress levels and triggers vary widely, it can take up to a month to see results.

Feliway Spray

The Feliway Spray is useful for preventing scratching and spraying as well as making trips in the car and carrier less stressful. It can also be used generally around the home by spraying on prominent areas like window sills, cat flaps and doorways. For spraying or scratching, spray the area that has been marked after it has been thoroughly cleaned. To alleviate travel stress, simply spray inside the carrier or car.

Feliway Spray works in the environment immediately, however it is important to leave at least 15 minutes to allow the alcohol in the spray to evaporate before introducing your cat to the environment. If repeat applications are required, such as during long car journeys, the area can be sprayed every 4-5 hours. Remember to never spray Feliway directly on your cat.

Feliway and Feliway Friends are safe, effective and drug free ways to help your cats feel less stressed, and more relaxed at home. By reducing your cat's stress levels you can avoid anti-social behaviours and foster a stronger bond between you and your feline friend.

Further Reading

Stress and Anxiety in Cats

Reducing Stress in Multi-Cat Households

How to Prevent Urinary Issues in Cats

Tips to Keep Your Indoor Cat Happy

Catify Your Apartment