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How to prepare your cat for their first trip to the vet:
First, it is important for your cat to feel comfortable when coming to a veterinary clinic. Having a carrier that suits your cats needs is key to making their visit less stressful. Below are some helpful tips on what type of carrier is best for your cat.
1.) Finding a secure, sturdy carrier will help your cat feel more comfortable when traveling.
2.) Having a carrier that opens from the front, and has a removable top is ideal for cats who are stressed or sick. This makes it easier for the veterinarian and the technicians to easily remove your cat from the carrier without causing more unwanted stress.
Next step is to introduce your cat to their new carrier. Here are some friendly tips to make this introduction smooth and fun!
1.) Leaving the carrier out in a place where your cat usually likes to rest and relax is a great place to start. Make sure to leave the door open, so your cat can easily come and go when they please. If they are still unsure about going in to their carrier, you can start with the top open.
2.) Putting soft blankets in the carrier will help entice your cat to go in and relax. Cats enjoy warmer temps than humans, so putting the carrier in a sunny, warm spot will be a sure way to get your cat to take their cat naps in the carrier.
3.) Feliway is a synthetic copy of feline pheromones, used by cats to mark secure spots. Spraying feliway on blankets that are in the carriers will help your cat feel safe. Spraying feliway on blankets 15-30 min. before leaving the house will give the feliway time to work its magic. You can purchase Feliway at Briarwood.
Lastly, you need to introduce car rides to your furry friend! These steps will slowly make the transition from home to car a little easier.
1.) Try putting a towel or blanket over the carrier, so that your cat feels more secure. If after a few rides your cat would rather look out, then remove the blanket.
2.) Treats is a great way to reward good behavior. Try short car rides at first, taking the cat around the neighborhood, then back in the house for a reward.
3.) Once your cat is comfortable, then you can make the journey to the vet clinic! Keeping catnip, toys and their favorite treats handy is a great way to keep your cat happy.
**Just a helpful reminder
It's best to bring your cat in on an empty stomach. This will help prevent any car sickness or nervous stomach upsets when they come to the vet. Also, your cat will be more willing to take treats from the staff and from you if they are a little hungry. This way you can keep rewarding your cat for their good behavior!