8 Tips To Make Veterinarian Visits Smoother

Taking any pet to the veterinarian can be a stressful ordeal, and it can be particularly stressful for cats. Whether your cat is an indoor cat or an outdoor/indoor cat, they most likely won’t be pleased with the unfamiliar surroundings and intrusive situation. There are many ways to make your trip to the veterinarian easier for both you and your cat. We’ve got some great tips and tricks lined up for you here that can help make veterinarian trips much less of a pain, resulting in a happier cat and an easier experience for you.

Cat Crate1. Get your cat used to their carrier: One necessary accessory that you’ll need to invest in when inviting a cat into your life is an adequate cat carrier. You can purchase these at any pet store. You’ll want to select a cat carrier that will be spacious enough for your cat to fit inside, yet small enough that they can feel snug and comfortable. You won’t want to purchase a very large one, as cats are comforted by spaces that are just the right size.

In order to prepare your cat for their first trip out in the cat carrier, you can ease them into the process by allowing them to get comfortable with the carrier in their own time. When you’re at home, have the cat carrier in a room that your cat frequents. Leave the door open so that your cat can explore the space. If you try to shove your cat into their carrier before they’ve experienced it at all, they’ll become stressed out and the visit will only go downhill from there. Make it comfortable with blankets or pillows, and place one of your cat’s toys inside so that they feel welcome and at-home.

2. Give your cat lots of affection beforehand: As a cat owner, you’ll begin to understand the moodiness of your cat and how quickly they can go from content to irritated. You’ll want to help your cat feel calm and at-ease before taking them to the veterinarian. This can be through snuggles, pets, brushing, or however else the two of you bond. This will set your cat’s mood up so that they are at least in good spirits before leaving the house.

3. Get lots of play in before the visit: Assuming that you’re just going for a regular checkup and your cat isn’t showing symptoms of being ill, you should try getting in some good playtime before the veterinarian visit. This will put your cat in good spirits, and will help them get out some of their pent-up energy. By the time you’re at the vet, your cat may be too exhausted to act out.

4. Regularly check up your cat at home: One of the best things that you can do to make visits to the vet smoother is to be regularly checking your cat at home on your own. Get them used to having their paws touched and their lips lifted to look at their gums. This will help you locate any potential problems beforehand, as well as help your cat get used to being touched by humans in ways that they wouldn’t be comfortable with otherwise. You can help get your cat used to being touched by rewarding them with treats when they do allow you to touch.

5. Put a blanket over the carrier: This is a great trick that many cat-owners aren’t aware of. You’ve already taken the time to help get your cat acclimated to their carrier, but you can take the comfort a step further. When you take your cat in their carrier out of the house and into the veterinarian’s office, bring a blanket that can fully cover the carrier. This will help your cat stay calm and feel protected. They will be hearing and smelling all kinds of new things, and will likely be getting stressed out in there. By covering their cage and disabling them from seeing what’s happening, they will feel safer and secure.

6. Talk to them: Your cat loves you, and will be taking cues from you on how to behave and feel in such a stressful situation. Don’t be embarrassed to speak calmly to your cat and let them know that you’re there for support. If you feel stressed out once you get into the office, just take a deep breath and stay calm for your cat’s sake. THey are in tune with you more than you know, and the simple gesture of you staying calm will help them be more at ease.

7. Schedule appointments during non-busy hours: If possible, schedule your appointment for a less popular time. Your cat will be less stressed, and you might be less stressed as well, if you take your cat in during a time when the office isn’t packed. When you call to schedule your appointment, ask the receptionist for times and days that aren’t high-traffic hours.

8. Bring treats: To help your kitty feel at ease, bring their favorite treats or kibble along for the trip. There’s a chance that your cat may feel so stressed that they aren’t hungry, but it’s certainly worth a try. Some cats may be so distracted by their food that they’ll forget all about the stressful situation that they’re in. Give them treats for relaxing, and allow them to have the treat in their carrier.

Taking your cat to the veterinarian is part of being a responsible cat owner. By trying some of the tactics that we’ve mentioned, your cat will be much less likely to have a stressful time. Even if your cat is freaking out, your veterinarian will be understanding and patient with both of you. Make sure to take the time to select a veterinarian that you’re happy and comfortable with, and each visit should get smoother than the last.