Decreasing Your Cat’s Stress When Going to the Vet

by Rachel Baker on September 8, 2014

Has it been a long time since you took fluffy to the vet because she turns into a wildly agressive jaguar every time you have taken her in the past? Well, here are some tips for making the visit a smoother and less stressful trip.

Fear at the Vet’s Office – Using Low Stress Handling for Cats .

According to the Bayer Veterinary Care Usage Study, “40% of cats have not been to the veterinarian within the past year-in large part because the cats themselves resist so vehemently being put in a carrier and transported to the practice, where they encounter unfamiliar animals at the clinic. It’s stressful to the cats, and often more so to the cat owner.” 1 58% of cat owners report their cat “hates going to the vet.” 1 This means that cats are often not getting the preventative veterinary care they need. Therefore when they do go to their vet, they are sick and this means the stress and the bills are usually higher.

The veterinary profession is recognizing the fear that our pets do feel at the vet and the subsequent stress felt by their owners, and is in the process of developing principles and standards for low-stress handling for all pets during their vet visits. The American Veterinary Medical Association’s Physical Restraint of Animals Policy states: “The method [of restraint] used should provide the least restraint required to allow the specific procedure(s) to be performed properly, should minimize fear, pain, stress and suffering for the animal, and should protect both the animal and personnel from harm. Every effort should be made to ensure adequate and ongoing training in animal handling and behavior by all parties involved, so that distress and physical restraint are minimized. In some situations, [sedation] may be the preferred method.

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