Making your visit to Whole Pet Veterinary Center easier!
Do you dread bringing your cat to the vet? Spend too much time trying to drag Mittens out from under the bed or dresser? You’re not alone!
Let’s face it. Most cats don’t like the car. But regular physical exams are essential to your cat’s overall well being. Here are some tips that may make getting Fluffy to our office a little less stressful. (These strategies also help for taking your cat on vacations).
Before you go:
- Start habituating your cat to the carrier and car early – it’s best to start this as young as you can:
- Leave the carrier out and make it a place to play, sleep or feed.
- Put treats in the carrier.
- Take your cat on periodic car rides associated with a positive experience. Avoid busy, noisy, high traffic areas that might make the experience backfire.
- Put soothing synthetic pheromones (such as Feliway) or clothing your cat associates with a favorite person in the carrier before transport.
- Cover the carrier during transport as cats de-stress more quickly in the dark.
- Avoid motion sickness by withholding food before travel. Some cats may benefit from prescription medications to prevent motion sickness.
- Some people find top-opening cat carriers more convenient.
- Some cats like to be transported while hiding in enclosed beds or blankets.
- To avoid aggression and conflict between cats, use separate carriers. Even cats who are the best of buddies at home can turn on each other when placed in a stressful situation.
At the Clinic:
- Pick an area of the waiting room away from dogs or other cats.
- Put the carrier up on a bench or table to keep your cat away from curious dog snouts.
In the Exam Room:
- Take the lid off the carrier to remove a stressed or frightened kitty from the carrier.
- Sometimes it’s helpful to use a towel to minimize visual stimulation.
- Some cats will be more comfortable being examined in the bottom half of the carrier rather than on the exam table.
- Let your cat wander around the exam room while you wait for the doctor or technician.
- Place the carrier in a quiet place and open the door.
- Allow your cat to come out on her own.
- A cat may bring home some smells from the clinic. Therefore, it’s best to separate a returning cat from other household cats for 30-60 minutes to avoid fights.