How to make the trip to the vet less stressful for your cat

Whether it is an emergency or an annual checkup for your cat, the drive to the veterinarian’s office can be more stressful than the visit itself. Here are some great tips to help alleviate stress for both you and your kitty.

  • Leave your cat’s cage out to allow him time to get used to the smell and become comfortable to enter it.
  • When it is time to go, place a few treats in the carrier to entice them to enter. If you need extra assistance wrap them in a towel or small blanket to place them in the carrier.
  • Remember, your pet can feel your emotions. If you are stressed then your pet will feel it and could become stressed themselves. Remain calm and talk through it as you go. This will let them know that there is no reason to worry.
  • Once in the vehicle keep the noise to a minimum. Try to keep the cage below window level as the fast passing motion can cause motion sickness.
  • Bring an extra towel for the carrier. During the car ride many pets can become carsick. Once you arrive, if your cat has been sick, you can change out their bedding easily to make them comfortable once again.
  • After you have checked in if there are other animals in the reception area you can keep the carrier on your knee or cover the kennel with an extra towel or jacket. By taking away the visuals that are stressing them they usually calm quickly.

If you think your cat becomes too stressed for visits to the vet explore the idea of home visits. Some veterinarians do offer this service at a minimal additional cost that may outweigh the stress of going to their office.

—Krista DeCarle is the owner of Royal Pooch Pet Services and is a pet first aid instructor for Walks ‘N’ Wags Pet First Aid.