Did you know that cats visit the veterinarian less than half as often as dogs do? According to Veterinary Practice News, the average number of feline visits to the vet is just 1.6 per year. Whether it’s because of cats’ notorious dislike of car rides, their ability to hide illness, or another reason, the fact is that cats aren’t getting the medical attention they need and deserve.
Don’t Wait Until Your Cat is Sick to Schedule a Vet Visit
If you only bring your cat in when she is sick, consider how much you could improve her quality of life with preventive care visits. These check-ups give our veterinarians the chance to look for signs of injury or illness that you might otherwise miss. Your cat’s regular veterinarian will do a head-to-tail exam to look for any issues that weren’t present at her last appointment. If we do discover something, it’s in your cat’s best interest to start treatment as early as possible.
The annual check-up is also the ideal time for us to check on parasite control, weight, and immunizations as well as order bloodwork. Our staff will look for signs of parasites such as fleas, ticks, and heartworm and recommend a treatment protocol or prevention strategies if necessary. If you’re behind on your cat’s immunizations, we will get him caught up at this appointment. We can also recommend non-core vaccines based on your cat’s risk factors and lifestyle.
Bloodwork is especially important because it allows our veterinarians to detect problems such as diabetes, kidney disease, and hyperthyroidism. With kidney disease being especially prevalent in older cats, it’s even more important to get in for routine check-ups.
Tips for Transporting Your Cat to the Vet in Peace
Cats are smarter than many people give them credit for and know that the sight of the cat carrier means a trip in the car, which most cats don’t like. To overcome this resistance, place the carrier in an accessible location at least a few days in advance. Your cat will have the opportunity to smell and mark it as well as climb inside. You may also want to consider spraying the inside of the cat carrier with pheromone to help reduce anxiety.
Cats are not above bribery, so try placing some treats in the carrier too. Adding blankets or favorite toys makes it seem like a cozy place to be. Once your cat has accepted the carrier, try going for short car rides with her inside of it. Be sure to praise any amount of cooperation you receive, no matter how small.
In the end, your cat may still throw a hissing fit about coming in for an appointment at Chaska Valley Veterinary Clinic. Just as you do with children, you know what’s best and sometimes you have to let your cat be upset for a while for his own good. However,we will do everything possible to make him comfortable and feel more relaxed once he arrives at the clinic. If your cat hasn’t had a check-up for a while, you don’t have to wait until August 22. Just call or request an appointment online and we will get back to you.
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