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Bringing Your Cat To The Vets

Bringing Your Cat To The Vets
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A visit to the vets does not have to be stressful for you or your cat.

Here are a few helpful tips;

1. Plan Ahead

  • Ideally, your cat should regard the carrier as part of the furniture at home, so it does not only ever appear just before a trip to the vet or cattery. If possible, keep the carrier out at all times with some comfy bedding in it, and feed your cat treats inside the carrier so he has positive associations with it.
  • Use bedding that smells familiar or even a piece of your clothing that smells of you.
  • You can spray the bedding with Feliway, a calming pheromone spray (available from us) 30 minutes before putting your cat in the carrier, or wipe a cloth around your cat’s face to pick up his own pheromones and place that in the carrier.
  • If your cat panics at the sight of the basket, it is best to keep it out of sight, wrap your cat in a large towel or blanket and quickly pop him into the basket still wrapped up.
  • Let us know if your cat is very nervous and we will try to book you an appointment at the beginning of a clinic when the waiting room will be quieter and there is less chance you will have to wait to be seen.

2. The Carrier

  • For your own and your cat’s safety, you should never let your cat travel loose in the car, and he should always be safely restrained in a secure carrier at the vet surgery.
  • If you have more than one cat they should travel in separate baskets, as stress may cause aggression between even the friendliest of cats.
  • The carrier should be strong, escape-proof and easy to clean. Top opening baskets are the easiest to get the cat in and out of.
  • Carriers which can be taken apart are useful for nervous cats, as once at the practice, they can stay in the bottom half of the carrier to be examined.
  • Cats like to hide, so cover the basket with a familiar smelling towel or blanket to make him feel more secure.

3. The Journey

  • Secure the basket either in the footwell or on a seat with a seatbelt, and try to keep the basket level.
  • You may wish to place a towel under the basket to absorb any “accidents”.
  • Drive carefully and calmly, and try to avoid loud noises and music. Talk calmly and reassuringly, and stay calm yourself as cats pick up on our anxieties.
  • Bring spare bedding for the return journey in case of any accidents.

4. At The Vets

  • If you would prefer to leave your cat in the car until your appointment time, just let us know at reception.
  • We have separate areas of the waiting room for dogs and cats to reduce stress to your cat.
  • Place your cat’s basket on one of our raised areas between the seats, as cats feel safer when they are higher up.
  • Keep the basket covered, and facing away from other pets that may also be waiting.
  • In the consulting room, don’t rush to get your cat out of the carrier, but instead, give him time to get used to his surroundings, and possibly even venture out of his own accord whilst you and the vet are talking.
  • If your basket comes apart, you can remove the top half and leave him safely in his familiar basket and bedding for most of the consultation.
  • Please ask for advice or a demonstration if you are unsure about how to administer any medication your cat has been prescribed.

 

Finally, if your cat becomes extremely distressed, please remember that we are able to offer the option of a home visit from one of our vets or nurses; please enquire at reception for further details.

 


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