Taking a kitten or cat home for the first time is a heartwarming experience. But there's nothing very nice about introducing your new kitty to the veterinarian, at least from the cat's perspective. The vet's office or an animal hospital can be an incredibly stressful place for any pet, but even moreso for a cat that has never made the trip before. Here are three tips to keep in mind to help you and your cat survive the first trip to the veterinarian.
Ask About Your Veterinarian's Background
Some veterinarians are jacks of all trades but some specialize in treating specific types of animals. For best results, there's nothing wrong with asking a veterinarian how advanced their knowledge is about cats in particular. A seasoned pro at dealing with cats might know some additional tricks to help keep your cat calm during the visit.
Give Your Cat Time To Adjust
It''s likely that your cat is going to be spending a good bit of time in a cat carrier during the car ride over or while waiting for the appointment to begin. Some cats are fine with being in carriers but others might completely freak out. In order to ensure this does not happen, you should get your cat used to going into the carrier at home before heading off for the appointment. Consider taking your cat with you on other minor trips, to get them used to traveling inside the carrier while in your car. With a little luck, your cat won't think anything is amiss when you put it inside the carrier and head off to the vet.
Wait Somewhere Besides the Waiting Room
One of the reasons cats and other animals freak out at the veterinarian's office is because of all of the scents from other animals that have been there. The most stressful part of any visit to the vet for many cats isn't actually meeting the veterinarian; it's having to sit in a waiting room that might be filled with other animals for an unknown amount of time. If you don't believe your cat will respond well to this environment, the solution is simple: wait in the car. You can call the vet and let them know that you have arrived for the appointment but don't want to bring your pet inside just yet and they will certainly understand.
If you want to make sure your cat's first visit to the veterinarian or animal hospital goes off without a hitch (or a scratch), take the time to find a vet who specializes in cat care and plan out your strategy for transporting your cat to the office on the big day. Contact a clinic like TLC First Animal Hospital for more tips and advice.