Cat Wellness: Is It Possible to Have a Stress-Free Vet Visit?
A fear-free veterinary visit can sound like an oxymoron, but it is an attainable goal for both cats and their people. At home, there is the task of reducing stress and anxiety regarding the travel kennel. And here at New Haven Pet Hospital we are given the special opportunity to help cats have the best possible exam.
Since cat wellness exams are necessary for a lifetime of disease prevention, this team-focused approach helps us all support feline health.
Many cats loathe their travel crates, but it doesn’t have to be this way. You can create a place of refuge for your cat by leaving the crate (with or without the top half on) in a sunny place away from household traffic. Outfit the bottom with cozy blankets or pillows. Leave toys or treats to entice them. Spray Feliway on and around the crate.
Over time, you may notice that your cat enter the crate without prodding. This will make it a lot easier to get them to the vet when it’s time for their routine cat wellness exam.
Kittens are pretty easy going when it comes to new experiences. That’s why we recommend bringing your kitten in to see us soon after adoption. However, even adult or senior cats can learn that no harm will come to them during a short visit to our hospital. You don’t even need an appointment! Just stop by to help your cat get acquainted with the sights, smells, and sensations of our waiting room.
A Word About the Car
Many cats are fine when they get here, but they sure do detest the car ride. Again, it’s advisable to start this desensitization as soon as possible.
- Ensure that their crate/kennel is secure on the car seat – try buckling it to reduce shifting.
- Offer treats and praise during the trip.
- Keep it short and sweet, but aim to do this weekly until you see them relax in the car.
Monkey See, Monkey Do
Cats are highly sensitive, intuitive animals. If they pick up on your own fear and anxiety surrounding the cat wellness visit, they will react in kind. Alternatively, if you are neutral and calm they’ll have a better chance at chilling out.
Prepare for Cat Wellness Exams
Stress is one of the largest reasons why a pet cat misses their routine cat wellness exam. Indeed, a majority of cat owners perceive that their cats hate leaving the house, traveling, and visiting the vet. While we do sometimes get the needles out, we do try our best to ensure that your cat feels safe and secure at our hospital.