top of page

What you need to know about Feliway Classic, Feliway Friends and Adaptil

Dr Chantelle McGowan, BVSc MANZCVS (Behaviour) & Elite Fear Free Coach


Do pheromones actually work? How do pheromones work? Are pheromones right for my pet?


Recently Dr Channy teamed up with Feliway and Adaptil to help pet guardians understand the role that pheromones can play in their pet's mental health. Pheromones like Feliway Classic, Feliway Friends and Adaptil are microscopic airborne chemical messengers generated through bodily secretions such as urine, breast milk, and axillary (armpit) sweat to be transmitted to another individual of the same species. These scent-less molecules are inhaled through the nares (nostrils) and attach to the olfactory nerve at the back of the nose. This triggers various signals to the brain, depending on the pheromone. Adaptil and Feliway are pheromones for calming, and promote feelings of security and safety, while others (that may be released at the vet for example) indicate danger and provoke fear.



Adaptil is a calming pheromone product for dogs, available as a diffuser, spray & monthly collar. Adaptil is a copy of the 'mothering' pheromone the bitch releases during lactation when the puppies are feeding. Adaptil is indicated for mild separation anxiety, noise / storm phobia and generalised anxiety, but can also be beneficial for puppies that were weaned from their litter before 10 weeks of age. A useful application of Adaptil can be spraying a treat-loaded snufflemat with Adaptil 15 minutes before giving it to your dog. Never spray your dog with Adaptil directly.





Feliway Classic (purple box) is a calming pheromone product for cats, available as a diffuser & spray. Feliway Classic is a copy of the 'happy territory' facial pheromone cats release when 'bunting / allorubbing' (rubbing their cheek on objects / individuals to indicate familiarity). Feliway Classic is indicated for stressed cats, but can also be beneficial for cats that are struggling with unfamiliar cats in their territory, or sprayed onto their carrier or towel (allowing 15 minutes for the deliverant to evaporate before bringing into contact with your cat). Never spray your cat with Feliway Classic directly.





Feliway Friends (red box) is a calming pheromone product for cats, available as a diffuser only. Feliway Friends is a copy of the 'mothering' pheromone the Queen releases during lactation when the kittens are feeding. Feliway Friends is indicated to help with conflict in multi-cat households, but can also be beneficial for cats that were weaned from their litter before 7 weeks of age. For Dr Channy’s anxious kitties living in a free-range, cat-dense neighbourhood, we run both Feliway Classic and Feliway Friends side-by-side monthly.





Black and white fluffy cat on a blue harness sniffs green bushes
Louis sniffs pheromones left by the neighbourhood cats

Pheromones are species-specific, like a lock-and-key mechanism; pheromones from one species cannot affect the other. For example, running Adaptil and Feliway in the same household is just as effective to the individual as on their own. Pheromones are not a ‘drug’, they do not enter the blood stream and are perfectly safe for pregnant, breast-feeding, young or vulnerable individuals. Pheromones are also safe to use long term.



Adaptil & Feliway products can be purchased from vet clinics, in store or online (you don’t need a prescription), but make sure you use a reputable retailer. Feliway Classic, Feliway Friends and Adaptil can have a mild-moderate effect on anxiety; so if your pet is severely anxious, it will have an effect, but perhaps not enough to see any difference.

So, if you’re wondering whether Feliway Classic, Feliway Friends or Adaptil are worth trying, the answer is yes! But with moderate expectations.


If the introduction of Feliway Classic, Feliway Friends or Adaptil is not seeming beneficial, or you’re concerned about the frequency, intensity or duration of problematic behaviour, we are here to help


This article has not been sponsored by Ceva



 

While intended to help any pet parent decide whether pheromones are right for their situation, this article is no substitute for a consultation with firstly, a veterinarian to ensure no physical ailments, and secondly, a qualified veterinary behaviour professional to assess your pet(s), their unique triggers, thresholds and capabilities, to offer a treatment plan tailored for success.

32 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page