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Products containing artificial pheromones can be an important tool for dealing with feline behavior problems, whether it’s territorial aggression, urinary marking, or simply a stressful trip to the vet. Cats naturally emit these pheromones. They are used to mark their territory as safe and secure by rubbing the side of their face against against furniture, or even against you.

When a cat smells a pheromone emitted by its own species, it triggers a natural response from her endocrine system which then releases calming chemicals. Artificial facial pheromones mimic cats’ natural pheromones and create a sense of security in their environment.  Products containing these artificial pheromones can be used to help comfort and reassure cats while they cope with a challenging situation and help prevent or reduce the stress caused by a change in their environment.

When used in combination with behavioral modification, these products can be very effective. Studies have shown that up to 95% of cats will respond to these artificial pheromones.

The products come in diffuser, spray and wipe form. Diffusers can cover an area of up to 700 sqare feet, and last about 30 days. Diffusers need to be plugged in continuously, and should not be placed under shelves, or behind doors, curtains or furniture. They need to be unobstructed for best results. Sprays and wipes work best as a shot term solution for travel or calming the cat during an unfamiliar or stressful situation.

Not all Feliway products are the same

Feliway is available in several different formulations, and they’re not all the same.

Original Feliway


The original Feliway product is recommended for problems with spraying and urine marking. Studies have shown that the product is 90% effective and results in a significant reduction of undesired behaviors within 7 days.

Feliway Multicat


The newer Feliway Multicat product is recommended to help reduce conflict in multicat households. It contains feline appeasement pheromones.

Feliway Spray


Feliway spray can help ease the stress of travel for vet visits and moves. It can also help reduce stress in a new environment, or during stressful situations such as thunderstorms, fireworks, or disruptions to the cat’s routine such as remodeling, parties, etc.

For more resources on how Feliway works and, visit Feliway’s website for information, testimonials, videos, and more.

Is there a difference between Feliway and Comfort Zone with Feliway?


In addition to the original Feliway products, made by Ceva, the company who originated the product and conducted all the studies, you’ll also find products labeled Comfort Zone with Feliway. The Comfort Zone line, available in diffusers and sprays, contains the same artificial pheromones and is less expensive than the original Feliway line.

A case of “you get what you pay for?”

While the Comfort Zone with Feliway products may be sufficient, you will most likely get better results with the original Feliway products. “I always advise my client to spend the money for the Feliway product,” says Dr. Andrea Tasi of Just Cats Naturally, a house-call based, feline-exclusive practice dedicated to a holistic, individualized approach to each cat. “All the original studies demonstrating fewer stress related behaviors in veterinary clinic cages that were pretreated with Feliway were done with the original product with a higher concentration of pheromones.”

I recommend Feliway to my clients and readers as a first line of defense for behavioral problems with mostly positive results. Anecdotal feedback from my clients suggests that the original Feliway line produces better results than the Comfort Zone line.

Feliway and Comfort Zone with Feliway products are available from Amazon – and Amazon’s prices are the lowest I’ve been able to find anywhere. Once you’ve purchased the diffuser kit, you can buy refills for additional savings. Diffusers should be replaced very six months for best results.


*FTC Disclosure: The Conscious Cat is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to products on Amazon. This means that if you decide to purchase through any of our links, we get a small commission. We only spread the word about products and services we’ve either used or would use ourselves.


This article was first published in 2016 and has been updated. Image at top of post via

57 Comments on Feline Pheromone Products: They’re Not All Created Equal

  1. What is the difference between feliway classic and feliway Optimum? My six-year-old neutered short-hair rescue has PTSD! Calm when he came home from the shelter, but has been skittish, shy, and reclusive since the first 2 hour attempt to get him in the crate to go to the vet. We also have his 17 year old step brother that he lived with prior to their time at the rescue. They are fine together-groom each other, sleep curled up together, etc. After five years, he is just now climbing up on the couch but won’t sit on your lap. We have just received the fluoxetine that his vet ordered, but haven’t started it yet. Any suggestions??

    • My understanding is that the Optimum formula is an optimized (pardon the pun) version of the classic. It sounds like it might be worth a try with your boy.

  2. Hi guys im wondering if it helps with sleeping at nights. My tom cat will not settle in the nights hes awake constantly. Scratching at any door thats closed n meowing really strong cos he wants to go out all the time. I let him out in day but not night. So i think i might try the plug in classic n see if it works

  3. My 2 cats (15 yr old brothers) have been marking my house for years. Tried Feliway many yrs ago for marking & stress issues did not notice any improvement. My Mother passed recently and I have to take her 16 yr old nervous female in. Ready to try Feliway again but it looks like I would have to have 2 diffusers in ea room 1 classic and 1 MultiCat. Is that correct? I need 5-6. Also I still have Feliway diffusers from yrs ago, would they still work? Thank You for any help you can provide.

    • I would start out with just one Multicat in each room. If you’re creating a safe room for your mother’s cat to stay in initially, I’d use the Classic for that room. I’m not sure how long they work, if you still have the packaging, there may be an expiration date?

  4. The regular Felliway works wonders for my cat. She was hiding under the bed after a serious illness. Hated pills and Vet visits. Used the Felliway and she was out and up on the bed in a few hours, relaxed and happy. Used it when I moved (1 1/2 day trip) even plugged it in at the motel! Got settled in after move and she was find in less than 2 days. Of course she was also happy she wasn’t abandoned. Packing boxes are bad news for her.

    Be careful on Amazon. Bought a refill. It had almost expired, packaging was filthy! Was from a small seller who immediately closed shop.

    • Soothing music or, if you’ve got the pipes, try singing nice songs to your cats, both work wonders for my cats (I’ve always found that soft Christian music ie: Steve Bell works especially well, I’m not kidding, it really does- even Christian speed metal has worked many times for both my dog & my cats!).

  5. I’ve been starting to research the Feliway diffuser for my cat that just seems to be anxious. It’s just him. But he has a really relaxed life, spoiled to say the least. But he has a over grooming problem. I think it’s an anxious, OCD, stressed reduced thing. I read where a Feliway diffuser could help that to calm and relax him. Would this be helpful to him? We give him attention and he has a routine but he is needy. But I’ve been noticing his over grooming issues, he’s jumpy and gets mood swings out of no where. We try to play with him and keep him active. He’s 3 years old.

      • Okay, thank you. I figured I could try the diffuser to see if that helps first. I just noticed a spot from his over grooming and wanted to try something on my own before taking to the vet. If it gets worse then I’d obviously take him in.

        • I noticed the studies claiming this product effective were all conducted by the company and were not done by independent research. When independent research was done, this product was not found to be effective. I’ve used this product in the past and it didn’t work. Save your money and take your cat to the vet.

      • Our cat is a singleton and quite anxious, she does a LOT of overgrooming…but we’ve been using Feliway for a year and counting, and she has stopped her overgrooming problem.

    • They both contain pheromones, but the composition is different. Classic is designed for general stress relief, multicat is designed for keeping the piece in multicat households.

  6. How many do I need to purchase to keep the cats calm?? I have 5 cats….and one is being bullied constantly. And she (the one that is bullied) has been peeing and pooping outside the box. She has been peeing in our livingroom and dining room carpets. So I need to know if I have to purchase more than one infuser or not?

    • In addition to keeping diffusers where the cats spend the most time, have you checked for animals outside your house which upset the cats indoors? Feral & house pets may be marking outside or in your garage, barn, etc. and making your cats feel the need to protect. I know some feral cats will mark your doors, walls or windows because they smell your cats. Good luck coming to a resolution and peace.

  7. I will be introducing a 12 week old kitten to my 6 month old kitten. The 6 month old has already responded positively to the scent of the younger one, but I’d like to make sure the actual introduction goes smoothly. Which version of Feliway would you recommend? Classic or Multi-Cat?

      • Thank you! Do you have any suggestions for it’s use (my first time with cat introductions)? Should I plug-in the feliway before the little one arrives? I’ve read up a lot on introductions, but none that use feliway to help out. Thanks in advance for your time!

        • I would plug the Feliway in before the new kitten arrives – use one in the new kitten’s safe room, and another one in the area where your other kitten spends the most time.

          • Thank you very much for your response and suggestions. And for this particular article! It answered my brand questions simply and clearly.

  8. I have used Feliway and Comfort Zone and when I switched to Comfort Zone there definitely was a difference. Feliway is much better. I have two cats, Smokey and Bandit and when they were young one cat, Smokey, was looking out the sliding glass door onto our deck and there was a stray cat out there. When Bandit came to see too, Smokey turned on Bandit and we had one of those all out cat wars like you hear outside your bedroom window during the night. They have never been close since then. Even Feliway has a hard time calming them. At least Feliway helps them to “tolerate” each other. I just want them to start sleeping together when we’re gone and learn to play together. i need something stronger than Feliway if it is out there.

    • Redirected aggression is such an awful experience, and it’s heartbreaking when cats who were previously best friends stop getting along. You can try calming treats to see if they help calm things further, there are number of different ones out there. Most importantly, use behavioral modification as much as possible to keep the peace.

  9. My vet recommended the spray for car rides and vet visits. She also thought it might help my cat’s overall anxiety level at home. She is very relaxed around family members and her sister cat, but gets very anxious whenever somebody visits – runs and hides. Would you recommend the multicat or the urine control diffuser for a cat with human stranger anxiety? I am not sure of the difference in the ingredients.

  10. I just bought the Feliway Classic, could I use this in a normal diffuser for humans? I ran out of money and this is the only diffuser I have and it has never been used before. Should I mix it with water or just put some drops in? How many drops should I use?

    • Feliway is designed to be used with the Feliway plug in diffusers. I doubt it would work in a human diffuser. I’d also be worried about safety issues using it with a different type of plugin (overheating of the diffuser.)

      • Ah, you have to invest in the diffuser. You don’t however need to buy a new one every six months.

        • The manufacturer recommends replacing the diffuser every six months, Deborah. I’ve noticed that they get pretty gross after a few months, and I think replacing them is probably a good idea not just for efficacy, but for safety as well.

  11. So now that I just ordered 9 “Multi Cat” feliway products for inappropriate marking and peeing. I see that I should of ordered the original. Wish it would of said it on the packaging. I’ve done a lot of research trying to see what the difference was and had never seen any until I read this article. Is the “Original” feliway the one called “Classic”?

      • I too had not realized that these were different product s. I guess I thought they were just different branding or packaging. Not having much luck managing marking. Need to try again and make sure I am getting the classic.

  12. No concern that the company who created and is selling the phermone product is also conducting the studies? Are they peer reviewed? Have they been recreated by a neutral party?

  13. We have 3 female spayed cats. They had 1 litterbox in the basement that they shared. Our 7 year old cat Bella began pooping on our carpet and peeing on our couch! She seemed badly constipated. She bloated 2x her belly size and would howl in pain as she was relieving herself on our upstairs rug! It got so bad that we had to throw the couch in the garbage. We assumed she was very ill, we did not think she would be with us much longer.

    After a vet visit, they assured is that Bella was not sick … She was stressed out by the other cats. On our vet’s advice, we bought the Feliway Classic diffuser and added 2 more litter boxes. One box for each cat. To our amazement, Bella never had another accident again. No more constipation, no hissing, no running and hiding from our 3 year old grandson. She was truly saved. Like clockwork, when it ran out after30 days, the hissing and hiding started up, so we bought a refill. Like magic, she is peaceful and happy … Immediately after we plugged it in again. I recommend this hands down!

  14. 5 year old spayed female cat, approx 2 months ago began urine marking a chair and pooping in the same area of hardwood floor in living room. She grew up with 2 of 3 small dogs, got the 3rd dog in March, so not sure if this is behavioral because of new dog or not. It’s obvious she has an issue with the new dog, I thought maybe it was just bc she still somewhat acts like a puppy (she’s just over 1 year old) but that kitty would get over it in time. Will she? And if this is behavioral, why did she only recently begin marking?
    Also, will any of these profucts have any effect on the dogs??

  15. The last two times we have ordered Feliway refills through the vet, they sent Feliway Multicat instead.

    That said, I can often tell a difference in Parker’s behavior when the Feliway is running low. She is a much more pleasant kitty when there is a diffuser, and the spray on a bandana helps when she has a difficult trip (such as the 5-hour ride to the farm for Christmas).

  16. We used the original plug in Feliway when we adopted our second cat (the Tortie). She was quite scared and having trouble acclimating to our home. We kept her in a closed off room with the Feliway plugged in. I do think it helped although it could also just have been time that did the trick. Either way, I’m giving it a positive review since I felt it was helpful in calming her during a challenging time.

  17. I’ve been told that the original Feliway spray can be sprayed on on items to keep a cat from clawing/scratching them. Anyone have experience with this?

    • You can use the spray for that purpose, although I have found that the spray works better for brief, challenging situations like vet visits (spray the inside of the carrier about 15 minutes before you’re going to use it.) For longterm issues like scratching furniture, the plug ins tend to do a better job.

      • Thank you so much, and I apologize for being so late in my response. I’ll try the plug-in since she continues to scratch the carpet. Thank you again!

  18. When I brought one of my cats home from the vet, my other cat wanted to fight her to the death. My vet recommended Feliway, and it worked like a charm. I love this stuff. Nice post.

  19. Feliway was recommended by my vet. Our young, neutered male cat was very sexually aggressive toward our older spayed female cat. Unfortunately, feliway had the opposite effect on him. He became more aggressive and exhibited new unacceptable behavior. I used comfort zone with feliway because that was all I could find. I didn’t know there was an original until reading this article.

  20. You didn’t mention the Calming Collar with pheromones imbedded because? They’re not an original Feliway product? I have used them with some good effect for a cat who had newly joined our multicat household (a 13 year old rescue) and was quite anxious about one of the other cats. Wearing the collar, he gradually calmed down.

  21. I used the Comfort/Feliway diffuser to reduce tension between my two and it worked quite well. I discontinued it after 90 days as per the directions. I had a small emergency and had to take Eve to the vet and she’s terrified of the carrier so I picked up a 9oz spray bottle of Quiet Moments by NaturVet. Cost was $9.95. I can report it did the job and I’ve used it in other places around the house where there’s been a change (change is alarming to my cats!), such as adding a new comforter to my bed. A few mistings and they want to lay on it all the time! Thanks for your continuing good advice!

    • I just got an original Feliway diffuser for my kitty. He has had a urinary blockage this past wknd and are barely starting to feel like himself after 48 hours at the emergency vet. I was wondering if anyone had experience using these diffusers in relations to helping your slightly older cat reduce stress, and in turn reduce risk of blocking again. any and all feed back would be great. thanks so much!

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