Don’t yell at the cat or scold her for hissing, growling or even scratching. If your cat is reacting negatively it’s because she’s very frightened. Punishing her will only heighten her fear.
Do as much advance preparation as possible and write down any questions or concerns you have about your cat’s health problem or behavior. You may even want to take some video on your smart phone to show the veterinarian if that’s the most efficient way to demonstrate a particular behavior or issue.
Don’t expect your cat to be immediately sociable upon your return home. She may need time to groom herself and get comfortable in her environment again. Clean the carrier to remove the smell of the veterinary clinic and toss any towels in the laundry.
Do give your cat time by herself before reintroducing her if you have a multicat home. Scent is a major form of communication between cats and it’s normal for the cats who remained at home to feel threatened by the vet clinic scents on their feline companion.
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Your cat needs good veterinary care throughout her life. Its important for cats to have yearly exams and for geriatric cats to have twice-yearly exams. In addition to the routine wellness exams, it’s also crucial to have your cat receive veterinary care at the first sign of a potential medical problem. You may not ever be able to completely reduce the stress a cat may feel during the veterinary visit or even during the trip to the clinic (does anyone love going to the doctor?), but you can reduce some of that fear. If you have a kitten, now is the perfect time to start training in order to have an adult cat who is easier to transport to the clinic and easier to handle once there.
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