There are more pet cats than dogs, but they receive less veterinary care than their canine counterparts. What accounts for this underrepresentation? Possible reasons might include crate anxiety, travel stress, and exposure to potential adversaries at the vet, even though there are numerous benefits associated with routine visits.
How do we help cats – and their owners – accept this “hard to swallow” pill? For starters, we strive to make our hospital inviting for our feline friends. Our fear-free approach not only relaxes patients but also hopes to impact future visits for greater cat health.
Training for Everyone
Cat owners typically dread forcing their cat into the crate, only to have their best friend suffer through a scary car ride and a foreign exam room. Luckily, with a bit of training and patience, you can both face the challenges of leaving the house together.
If possible, crate train your cat from an early age. If it’s a clamshell, separate the top lid from the bottom, line it with cozy blankets, toys, and treats, and reward your cat when they get in on their own. Over time, reattach the top lid and door while continuing to encourage your cat to spend time inside.
Try going for a drive together every once in awhile, being sure to praise your cat for the new experience. Be consistent, remain calm, and you’ll both be well trained to leave home together.
Cats are amazingly adept at using their finely tuned survival instincts to evade predators and hunt their prey. These highly developed senses include a high sensitivity to sights, smells, and sounds that might be perceived as threatening. Going into sensory overdrive creates excessive stress and anxiety for a confused cat, and leaving their territory is one sure way to make this happen.
Cats have potent pheromones in glands throughout their bodies, like the cheeks and paw pads. That’s why they rub on furniture, walls, fences, and people they claim as their own. They release these pheromones when they’re relaxed and content.
Fear-free practices employ pheromone diffusers like Feliway to simulate these good feelings and reinforce comfort and confidence when away from home.
To help your cat relax a bit inside the crate, car, and vet, spray this product around them or even on yourself.
A Boon to Cat Health
Unfortunately, cats are perceived as solitary animals who prefer their independence to the company of others. Sure, they’re amazing at self-care, but they’re also stoic animals, which means they’ll endure unnecessary pain and discomfort before symptoms are noticeable.
There are elements of cat health that require veterinary intervention. Dental care, vaccinations, age-appropriate nutrition, parasite control, disease prevention, and more are vital components of overall cat health. Without routine care, longevity can be affected, as well as quality of life.
Cats need their owners to provide the best possible care, and sometimes, that includes (or hinges on) veterinary support. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns about cat health. We’re always here for you!