National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day came and went Sunday, 8/22/21. Most of you cat owners probably did not know it was even an observed event. And on a Sunday too. So let’s call this week National Take Your Cat to the Vet Week. 

Now you know. 

According to the Humane Society of the United States, there are approx. 86 million cats and 78 million dogs in U.S. homes. (Granted, more Americans own dogs than cats. But, it seems people like to have a couple of kitty cats in the house or apartment.)

That said, doggie owners do a better job of bringing their furry friends to the vet than feline owners. So, duh, the reason for a National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day or Week promotion.  

Why Cats Don’t Go to Vet as Often as Should

Alison Birken, DVM, wrote a very informative blog on this topic recently. Here is the link. Among the points she brought up are:

“A recent study showed that more than half the cats in the US have not been seen by a veterinarian within the year for a wellness visit.”

“Some people also believe that because cats are very independent animals, they do not need the care and attention that dogs do.

“Another reason why cats don’t see the vet as often is because cats are known to hide symptoms of an illness until they cannot anymore. This unique characteristic is actually a survival tactic. As a prey animal, cats instinctually do not want to show any sign of weakness or illness. They will act as if they are healthy and strong to keep themselves from looking vulnerable.”

Cat Carrier Causes Stress

Cats are known to be “high-stress” creatures. Some pet parents don’t want to add to that stress. So they skip the vet visit rather than the following:

  • Cats do not like change in their routines, like leaving the house or apartment (in a cat carrier).
  • Nothing says stress more than being shoved in a cat carrier (“hey, isn’t this the box I was put in when they BROUGHT me here? Oh Oh…”).
  • Driving long, uncomfortable distances in a car, suffering through stop-and-go traffic (in the cat carrier).
  • Locked up in a cat carrier in the vet’s waiting room with— DOGS barking, sniffing dogs!!!

A workaround is to create a self-contained fun zone in the cat carrier. You can put kitty at ease. Try a comfy favorite blanket. Include a couple of favorite toys. These will encourage the cat to enter its carrier and to distract while inside.

Bottom line, do what you can to make kitty’s visit more comfortable. But make the appointment for a visit.

Don’t have a vet? You can find an AAFP Member or Cat Friendly Practice® near you at this website.

(What type of content should your business website blog offer? Advice rather than product promotion. Be a valuable info resource rather than an irritating source of sales pitches. For example, if you owned a pet shop or veterinary practice, then you might share this type of content. Contact me if interested.)