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Cats: Common Misconceptions

1. My cat is indoors – she only needs to see the vet when she is sick.

We need to keep in mind that a cat ages a lot quicker than we do. Have you seen a Doctor or had any ailments in the last five to seven years? Cats hide illnesses as much as possible. They can show no weakness as a way of self-preservation.

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2. My cat does not go outside so it does not need vaccinations.

Your cat can potentially be exposed to the rabies virus simply by a single bat getting into your home, and you know your kitty will be trying to catch it for you!

Rabies is a zoonotic disease. This means you or anyone in your family is susceptible to it. Rabies is fatal without immediate treatment. It is not worth the risk with you or your pet’s lives.

The other vaccinations are for contagious upper respiratory viruses. You can bring these viruses into your home after contact with any cats you may have met outside your home. These viruses can have lifelong negative effects on your cat that were otherwise preventable with vaccinations.

3. My indoor cat will not get worms

Your pet can get intestinal parasites from fleas, eating mice or other rodents and was most likely born with them. These parasites take nutrients from your cat and he will not have the nice coat, skin and proper weight that he should.

4. My cat hates coming to the veterinary clinic

This we will not deny, it is not fun to go into a moving carrier. Cats hate car rides and when they are here, we are manhandling them (as nicely as possible).

We have many fear-free tips to help:

  • Don’t feed your cat a full breakfast the morning of the veterinary visit – we like to bribe them and this works better if your cat is hungry.
  • Take the carrier out a few days before and frequently put warm from the dryer towels in it to entice your kitty to hang out inside.
  • Put treats in the carrier frequently the days before the visit.
  • Carry the cage by the bottom – not the handle. They do not feel secure swinging around.
  • Have the car warm on cold days.
  • Use Feliway on the towels – this is a pheromone spray that can help calm your kitty.

We have a medication that you can give your cat one to two hours before the visit to calm her down. This oral sedation comes in both liquid or pill form and even works well on fractious cats.

We will do our best to make your cat’s visit to the hospital as stress-free as we can.

Written by Darlene Cannon, RVT

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