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I'd like to bring my cat to the vet because he has some spots in his eyes (he had this since a long time, actually) and to do a general check-up but my cat is really really aggressive when it comes to go to the vet making the visit difficult.

What are some techniques I can use to make the whole experience a lot smoother (for the cat but mostly for the vet)?

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Related but not a duplicate Putting a cat into a carrier –  James Jenkins Aug 4 at 9:34

2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

This is almost certainly a fear reaction, not "aggression". Cats tend to find vet surgeries extremely stressful, frightening places. I had one who was so bad my husband and I simply didn't take her unless it was an emergency: she had to be sedated to be examined.

Some of the things you can do that will help:

  • notify the vet in advance that your cat tends to lash out when frightened. Most vets have procedures and equipment in place to handle frightened cats.
  • try to schedule the first appointment of the day or at a time when there are no other animals there. This won't always be possible, but if you can do that, it will help (and may be enough that your cat can be handled safely)
  • have something that smells of you in the cat carrier. The familiar scent will help to reassure him (this is a relatively minor factor, but with a cat that lashes out when frightened, anything helps)
  • if you have a carrier with extremely limited line of sight that will also help, particularly if you can't get an appointment when there are no other animals in the vet surgery (again, a relatively minor factor).
  • talk to your cat the whole time. This is another minor thing, but tends to help.
  • it also helps if you are the one holding the cat and reassuring him. This isn't always possible, but it does help. Be prepared to take some damage when you do this: a terrified cat may not distinguish between you and a stranger.
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Note that some vets will only allow their own personnel to restrain the cat during the exam (for liability reasons, so you are not injured). Check w your vet. –  Zaralynda Aug 5 at 19:45
    
These are all excellent points in helping a stressed cat NOT stress when they're going to / at the vet's office. Leaving a cat carrier out, where your cat can get used to it and see it as "utterly normal", is another good method to easing stress. If you can find any cat-only vets, that's another big way to reduce stress on your cat. –  Leigh Aug 6 at 1:40

Depending on where you live, there are mobile-vet services who can and will come to your home / the animal's environment, and do basic vet things like basic checkups/diagnostics and some vaccinations. This service may cost more, but if going into the carrier stresses your cat far too much, this may be a way to get those spots identified.

You might try calling your regular vet and ask them if there are such services in your area that they'd recommend.

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