A separate waiting room away from dogs.
A separate hospitalisation ward for when cats have to stay in the practice.
Always choose a sturdy carrier (cardboard, particularly if it gets damp, is no match for a determined cat!), and never travel with your cat loose in the car. It may be difficult to choose the ideal carrier from the huge variety available, but these tips might prove useful:
Your cat will be less alarmed if the carrier smells familiar and reassuring. You can do this by:
Having the carrier around the house ‘as part of the furniture’ so it does not only appear when a visit to the vet is imminent
Getting your cat used to the carrier by using it as a bed at home or occasionally feeding your cat in it
Using bedding in the carrier that your cat normally sleeps on or curls up on at home
In addition, place an article of clothing belonging to your cat’s favourite person in the carrier
Wipe a soft cloth around your cat’s face to pick up its scent. Rub the cloth around the carrier, especially in the corners and then leave it in the basket
At least half an hour before putting your cat in, spray the carrier and its contents with Feliway if available (a synthetic pheromone which helps cats to feel secure), Feliway can be purchased from our practice without a prescription.
If your cat panics at the sight of the carrier because it is unused to it or has bad associations with it, be prepared. Keep calm and work smoothly so that you are successful at the first attempt.
Keep the basket close by but out of sight. Wrap your cat in a thick towel or blanket, which smells familiar, and put the cat and the towel into the basket quickly but gently, so that it cannot grab the carrier, struggle and escape – never to be seen again that day!
Cover the carrier with a cloth or towel during the journey to keep your cat calm.
Put the carrier in the footwell behind the front seat of the car or secure it on the seat with a seatbelt. Place it on a towel to keep it level and to absorb any ‘accidents’.
Drive carefully to avoid your cat being thrown around and keep the volume down on the radio.
Stay calm so that your cat doesn’t pick up any tension from you. Speak quietly and reassuringly during the journey.
Take some spare bedding (smelling of home) in case your cat is sick or soils in the carrier.
On arrival at our practice, try to avoid rushing. Keep your cat in the basket and carry it carefully without swinging or banging it against your legs.