Routine check-ups for cats

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (HEARTLAND WEEKEND) - February is National Cat Health Month. While more than 25% of U.S. Households have a cat, cat owners are slacking when it comes to regular vet visits.

Dr. Liz Stelow, Veterinary Behavior Specialist at the University of California, Davis, says, “cats don’t get the same level of routine veterinary care that dogs get.” According to Dr. Stelow, cat owners mainly take their feline companions to the vet when they’re in desperate need of care.

Getting your cat ready for a trip to the vet in a non-stressful way can take time. It starts with making sure the cat is comfortable being in a carrier or crate. Dr. Stelow recommends an occasional car ride with your cat inside its carrier, ensuring plenty of treats is involved.

Finding a veterinarian specializing in cats or is designated as fear-free can also help.

“It’s really good to pick one of those clinics if you can. It means that the veterinarians and the office staff are taking special care with cats.”

If your cat still isn’t having a positive experience during a check-up, the vet may recommend medications before its next visit. “There are medications that can be taken the night before, and the day of that can make everything a lot less stressful for cats. That way, the veterinarian can do a better job of examining, and the cat won’t have a really terrible memory of the event.”

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