Veterinary exams are very important, even for indoor cats. Regular check-ups help keep your cat healthy and can help you identify problems before they become serious issues.
But going to the veterinarian can be stressful for your cat. To your cat, the process of entering an unfamiliar carrier, a scary car ride, a strange waiting room, and then the examination can be very stressful. (Download our helpful information on Getting Your Cat in the Carrier for Your Next Exam.)
Feliway pheromones can help reduce the signs of stress your cat may be feeling while at the hospital.
In fact, many veterinarians use Feliway pheromones in their practice to help reduce the level of stress. Feliway is clinically proven* to help reduce the stress a cat may feel during a veterinary exam, making it easier for the veterinarian to handle and exam your cat.
Spray Feliway on the inside of the cat carrier (one spray in each corner and two sprays on the floor and ceiling) at least 15 minutes before use. Also spray Feliway on a towel to place over your cat's carrier while in the waiting room. This helps block the cat from the strange sights and provides him with some privacy. The veterinary staff may also use this towel while handling your cat to help reduce the signs of stress.
If your cat has an extended stay at the veterinarian (hospitalization or boarding), plug in a Feliway Diffuser at home for the cat's return.
Using a Feliway Diffuser will also help other cats in the household, as the returning pet may be unrecognizable by smelling and/or looking different (bandages, collar, etc.).
You and your cat will have a much better experience at the hospital!
Put yourself in your cat's shoes with this fun video to show how a cat might feel going to the veterinarian:
Need advice on traveling to the hospital with your cat? See our video:
*Pereira, Fragoso, Lavigne, Beck, et al. Proc of the 2014 International Congress on Semiochemistry and Management of Animal Populations, Apt, France, Nov 2014; pp 89-90.
A week before the visit, place the carrier in the open and prop the door open.
Make the carrier an attractive place by putting in soft bedding, and placing treats in the carrier. You may also want to feed your cat here.
Spray the carrier with Feliway® daily (8-10 pumps)
On the day of the visit, spray the carrier with Feliway® then wait 15 minutes before putting your cat in it.
Spray a towel with Feliway® and place it over your cat carrier to shield her from the strange and scary sights.
Make sure the cat carrier is on a flat surface during transport.
Once at the veterinary office, try to keep your cat elevated, off the ground and away from the other animals.
Leave the Feliway® sprayed towel on the carrier until your veterinarian is ready to exam your cat.
Veterinarians use and recommend Feliway. For even more information on veterinary visits, go to AAFP / American Association of Feline Practitioners.
He is a lovely cat but has always hated travelling by car, even for short distances.