Help, I hate taking my cat to the vet!
According to the AVMA https://www.avma.org/Pages/home.aspx, 45% of cat owners decline bringing their pet in to the vet for regular care because they “hate taking their cat to the vet”. Unfortunately, cats are very good at hiding it when they are sick, and you will not notice any symptoms until the illness has significantly progressed. Your veterinarian, through a complete physical exam and routine blood work, can catch symptoms much earlier.
So, what can we, as veterinary professionals, do to make it easier on you and your furry family member?
Here at Gentle Touch Animal Hospital, we work hard to make every visit fear free and stress free. https://drsophiayin.com/low-stress-handling/. How do we do this?
You, and many other cat parents, hate taking your cat to the vet. We advise our clients to put the cat carrier out well ahead of the appointment day. We can provide you with a Feliway wipe to put all over the carrier. This is a pheromone that is proven to attract and calm the cat. She will want to enter the carrier to “check it out”. You can even put treats in their to make it rewarding to her.
- If she is more comfortable staying in her carrier, we will simply remove the top and examine her in there. Hopefully, she will be so interested in the reward, she will not pay attention to what is being done to her.
- When you arrive to our hospital you are immediately put into a room so that your cat does not have to wait in the lobby and feel stressed with all of the sights and sounds. Our cat specific rooms are equipped with non-slip mats, Feliway, and music boxes with calming, cat specific music. Our entire staff is trained in stress free handling and your cat will get as many treats as she wants to during the visit. This is called counter conditioning. The idea being she will be so interested in the reward, she will not pay attention to what is being done to her.
- Cats are not known for loving a car ride so it is important to make it the least stressful as you can for him. Make sure he is in the carrier, with Feliway and treats (unless he is sick). Place the carrier on the floor in the back seat. More often than not, the less they can see the more secure they feel. You can also cover the carrier with a towel to make him feel more secure.
- If all of the above is unsuccessful and your cat is too stressed, we will offer a light sedative to “take the edge off”. This will calm him and allow us to complete the exam without a negative effect on your cat or the staff. And don’t worry, we know that Fluffy is a wonderful pet at him, he is only acting out here because he is scared!
As always, do not hesitate to contact us with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303.691.3720
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