Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Blog the Change - take your cat to the vet


Statistics tell the very sad story: kitties do not make it to the vet nearly as often as they should.


According to the American Veterinary Medical Association cat visits have fallen 30% since 2001. Cats see the vet about half as often as dogs. This really is a shame. Even if you are purposefully avoiding vaccines, you should not use that as an excuse for putting off having the cat examined. Cats are so good at hiding their health issues you often can not tell something is wrong until it is advanced and often much more difficult and thus more expensive to treat. Annual blood work can catch thyroid, liver and kidney issues before they become life changing. Making sure your cat's teeth are in good shape is also very important. Many people are not comfortable looking in their cat's mouth to check on their teeth and dental issues are as important to cats as they are humans. Having a vet regularly check your cat's teeth will keep their teeth healthy and can help prevent tooth pain and loss.

Many people site stress on the cat as their reason for avoiding the vet visit. Catching a cat, getting it in the carrier, and then traveling by car can all be very stressful. Cats are creatures of habit and it is not each particular thing that is the stressor but the fact that these things do not happen on a regular basis. Cats that routinely travel by car do not find it stressful at all. Going slowly and desensitizing your kitty to being picked up, getting into the carrier, and eventually going for car rides will actually make this easier for you. Take your kitty for short rides around the block. When I worked for a vet we actually had clients bring their pets in to be loved on by the receptionists to try to make the vet office a positive place. Chances are the receptionists at your vet's office would be happy to make nice with your kitty and offer treats and a few chin scritches.

Another benefit of having regular vet visits is that you end up creating a good relationship with your vet. Having a vet who knows you and can pick you out of a crowed, and who likes you and your pet is absolutely priceless. A vet who sees you regularly knows that you are going to be a regular source of income and might be willing to extend you some benefits that they might not be willing to offer someone they have never seen before. Discounted services or free samples might be offered from time to time as veterinarians want to keep their regular clients happy and coming back. They might also be willing to extend you credit if an emergency arises and finances aren't in place to take care of it. I know of several people who have their vet's cell phone numbers to reach them if there is an off hour emergency.

I would like to share this video with you. I really like it as it offers many great suggestions for keeping your kitty calm. While a lot of it speaks directly to the veterinarian, there is no reason why you couldn't take these suggestions with you and offer them up as your vet starts the exam.

Video by catalystcouncil.org

Personally I need to take my own advice. I am currently with out a vet, and my cats are slightly over due for their annual exams. I plan on taking a day or two in the upcoming weeks and scheduling an appointment at a few clinics in the area to go in and spend some time chatting with the vet. I want to find a vet who is willing to work with me, who is open to suggestions and 'new' research. Who does not dismiss 'it came off the internet', who will not lie to me, and are willing to accept 'no' for an answer when they suggest treatments for my cats. Sadly it is a very tall order for the vets I have come in contact with. I am determined to find one though. Hopefully I don't have to drive too far, as Kit tends to get car sick when we drive..

Please, let us not treat our cats like second class citizens and make sure they get the medical care they deserve.

Blog the Change

11 comments:

  1. **Sigh** I've been to the vet enough for a DOZEN kitties! And none of them can figure out for sure why I'm so picky about food. Meanwhile, Binga and Boodie don't go anywhere NEAR as often! My human is a little lax in their checkups because they are generally healthy and, to be honest, she never goes to the human vet either! But all three of us have had vet visits and senior panels in the past year, so that is a good thing!

    ReplyDelete
  2. We go to the vet annually, but the head peep really hates taking Ashton and will put it off. Ahston gets so stressed out that she pants and drools, and that always makes her drag her feet about it. She's not due again for a while, so we don't have to start procrastinating again...yet!

    ReplyDelete
  3. We have been to the Vet so often since Abby got sick that it's not funny. We keep going and going and going because Mom is now petrified. Annabelle has been three times, first was a wellness check up, then for followup with itchiness, and then with what is now turning out to be a small prolapse anus. This will as you can imagine more Vet visits.

    ReplyDelete
  4. ITA with this and can't understand why cats become second-class pets who don't get to the vet's office. I have been surprised a number of times when we'd bring one in for a wellness visit and get unexpected news--and I'm pretty vigilant about our cats.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Very interesting and useful post, thank you ! We go to the vet annually, and more if there is something wrong (Mum is very good at finding if there is something wrong with one of us). No problem with Zorro, but it's hectic with Loupi ! Purrs

    ReplyDelete
  6. we are "lucky" that our vet comes to the house. mom is going to talk to her about the whole vaccine thing, but she tries to be vigilant about getting us seen once a year (except Maestro who gets the really-old-mancat-6 month checkup)

    ReplyDelete
  7. I am looking around for a new vet. My previous vet is rarely around (he's passing the business to his son) and I'm not comfortable with his son. I found one whom I kinda like who's good with the kids but he's a little too far. I hope to find one soon because the cats are all overdue with their checkups.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks for posting this. I have been meaning to take Skootch in and haven't done it because he's old and very frail and nervous. Lately he has had very bad breath, and I will make an appointment RIGHT NOW!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. This is such important stuff! We wish everyone would get their kitties checked regularly.

    ReplyDelete
  10. You know, we've three vets and we talk to all of them regularly. We're off to see them this week to discuss vaccination issues. Mind you, the humans go to the doctor about once every five years so we kitties are WAY over our quota!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Important post! The peeps always leave my PTU out for about a week before the v-e-t so I love to sleep in it or on top of it. That said, actually going to the vet totally stresses me. Last time, TW used Comfort Zone spray which helped a little. My original vet was awful and they almost killed me but putting me on my back. TW then looked for another vet but none of the local ones spoke English. My peeps don’t drive and need a vet close enough that the cab ride doesn’t cost more than the vet visit. Last year, we tried another vet that they used to bring their Mom’s very first cat too. The place comes highly rated but the doctor I got who specializing in cats was scared of me. He examined me in my case but couldn’t do erays or get blood work cos he was afraid I’d get an asthma attack from the stress. There is a mobile vet but they’re only good for my shots although the peeps don’t like the idea of shots. Sorry to go on so long.

    ReplyDelete

All spam will be fed to the kittens

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...