Research studies consistently show that only 50% of America’s cats have seen a veterinarian in the past year, indicating a problem on many levels. One solution to get more cats to the vet is to create a low-stress experience for cat vet visits by taking cats to fear free veterinary clinics. Since many cat parents report that the leading reason they don’t bring their cat to the vet is because he’s stressed by the visit, a less stressful visit will encourage cat parents to take their felines to the vet more consistently, resulting in earlier disease detection, and healthier cats.
LACK OF CAT VET CARE HAS NEGATIVE CONSEQUENCES
When cats don’t get consistent veterinary care, negative consequences can occur which affect both cats and cat parents:
- Cats suffer because medical conditions they’ve developed go untreated.
- Cats suffer because late-stage treatment of disease may require more aggressive treatments.
- Cat parents suffer because it’s more expensive to treat disease in later stages than catching a disease and treating it in the early stages.
STRESSFUL VET VISITS: THE NUMBER 1 REASON WHY CAT PARENTS DON’T TAKE THEIR CATS TO THE VET
Multiple veterinary industry surveys show that the main reason why cat parents don’t take their cats to the vet is because they don’t want to put their cat through the stress of visiting the veterinary hospital.
FEAR FREE VETERINARY CLINICS ARE THE ANTIDOTE TO STRESSFUL VET VISITS
The antidote to stressful vet visits is to consider Fear Free Veterinary Clinics as your source of veterinary care. Once cat parents experience fear free veterinary clinics, and the resulting low-stress experience for their cats, they are more willing to provide consistent veterinary care for their cats.
Here’s what Fear Free Veterinary Clinics like Mile High Animal Hospital of Aurora offer:
Low Stress Handling Techniques – The staff at Mile High Animal Hospital of Aurora has special training in Low-Stress Handling Techniques for animals. This results in a low-stress experience for cats who visit one of these types of veterinary hospitals. Some examples of low stress handling techniques include:
- Not holding or forcing a pet down for an examination
- Putting a towel over cats while they’re being examined to help them feel safe
- Conducting exams from tail to nose, instead of from nose to tail
- Letting pets lick a paddle of peanut butter or get access to treats while they get their exam
Segregated Exam Rooms – Fear Free Veterinary Clinics offer exam rooms specifically for cats. That means no dogs are allowed in those rooms, and cats can relax because there are no smells of dogs in those rooms.
Aromatherapy – Cats navigate by sense of smell. When another cat feels scared or in danger, it emits pheromones that tell the next cat entering the exam room that it’s a scary place. Fear Free Veterinary Clinics use synthetic pheromones that tell a cat (through its nose) that they’re in a safe place.
HOW TO FIND FEAR FREE VETERINARY CLINICS
There are some easy ways to find true fear free veterinary clinics. Here are some suggestions for finding veterinary hospitals that operate under “fear free” guidelines:
Staff Trained in Low-stress, Low-restraint Animal Handling Techniques: Visit websites of veterinary hospitals you’re considering and look for this language: Low-stress, low-restraint handling techniques.
Certified Cat-friendly Practice: Veterinary hospitals with this designation have to pass a lot of requirements to be certified as a cat-friendly practice. This designation comes through the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP). So, look for signs that a veterinary hospital is a Certified Cat-friendly Practice.
The bottom line is that Fear Free Veterinary Clinics like Mile High Animal Hospital of Aurora create a low-stress experience for cats (or any pet) who’s afraid to go to the vet. By creating this low-stress experience, cat parents can stop putting off taking their cat to the vet because they don’t want to stress out their cats. This results in more consistent veterinary care, which is good for cats and good for cat parents, too!
Got a cat who’s scared to go to the vet? Bring him to Mile High Animal Hospital of Aurora, which is a Certified Cat-friendly Veterinary Hospital, with a staff trained in low-stress handling techniques. Contact Mile High Animal Hospital of Aurora to schedule veterinary care for you cat, or give us a call at: 303.693.6484.