Tips for a Cat-Friendly Vet Visit

Most feline patients are very sensitive to new sights, sounds, and smells. In a new environment this can feel threatening to your cat and may put him or her into a fearful state. If you or your cat has had a stressful visit in the past, please mention this to our receptionist at the time of scheduling your appointment. We can discuss a low stress plan to make your cat’s experience as smooth as possible.

Here is a list of some ways to help reduce anxiety in our feline patients and have a calmer visit:

  1. See our handout titled “Transport Your Cat with Less Stress” for general information on getting your cat acclimated to the carrier.
  2. Keep the carrier on a level and secure surface when transporting your cat in the car.
  3. Cover the carrier with a towel to quiet the sights and sounds in the car.
  4. Use Feliway®, a calming synthetic pheromone that can reduce anxiety in your cat. This product is available in a spray or a pre-moistened wipe. Do not apply Feliway® directly to your cat. Instead, spritz a towel or wipe the inside of the carrier. Use Feliway® at least 30 minutes prior to travel.
  5. When you arrive at the clinic, our staff will place you and your cat in a cat-friendly room to minimize the sights and sounds from other animals in the clinic. These rooms are set up with soothing music by “Through a Dog’s Ear,” a Feliway® pheromone diffuser, and a heating pad and blanket for your cat to cuddle on. If a cat-friendly room is unavailable, you have the option to:
    1. Wait in the lobby – Please use the Kitty Corner to keep your cat’s carrier up and away from dogs and other animals. When cats are scared, they instinctively want to be up in high places. Towels and Feliway® spray are available to cover the carrier until a room is available.
    2. Wait in the car - You are more than welcome to call our office from the parking lot to ensure a cat-friendly room is ready for you. If there is going to be a wait and the lobby is busy, we have the option of letting you and your feline wait in the quiet car. Our technician will then notify you when a cat-friendly room is available. If you are more comfortable waiting in the clinic, we can also set up another waiting area in the treatment area of the clinic.

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