At Westgate Pet Clinic, we love and celebrate the "little tigers" that we are lucky enough to share our lives with. We offer the following information and resources to help you help your cat thrive as a family pet! Click on the following categories for more information.
ENVIRONMENTAL ENRICHMENT (link to website webpage "feline environmental enrichment")
PREVENTATIVE HEALTH CARE (link to website webpage "feline preventative health care recommendations")
A SUCCESSFUL TRIP TO THE VET (link to the website webpage "Cats Only: A successful trip to the vet". There are 4 sections on this page which also need internal links. they should be linked to their respective web pages, which all start with "Cats Only".)
When cats return home, they may carry unfamiliar materials (like bandages) or odors on them. Other cats may fail to recognize the returning cat and may attack them. To help reintroduction of cats, follow these tips:
1.) No history of aggression between cats after a veterinary visit:
Leave the returning cat in the carrier to see how the other cat(s) react. If no hissing or signs of aggression or fear occur over a 5-10 minute period, then you can allow the returning cat out of the carrier to interact with the other cat(s). Observe these interactions for 5-10 minutes. If signs of aggression occur, distract the cats to separate them. Avoid getting between them or picking up in an aroused state as redirected aggession may occur.
2.) Where aggression is a potential concern:
If prior home-comings have led to aggression, or if there is a negative reaction after trying the above approach, use the following tips:
* Put the patient in another safe, quiet room (with all necessary resources) for at least 24 hours until the cats consistenty respond to food and toy play from both sides of the door.
* If problems continue after slow re-introduction for 3 days, seek help from your veterinarian. A slower reintroduction period, or medication may be needed to facilitate the process.
* Often, bringing the cats to the clinic together for future visits will prevent problems as both cats will carry the scent of the clinic.
The following information may be helpful for cat owners that need to provide additional care for their cat: AAFP Brochure: Nursing Care for your Cat
Occasionally, your cat may need to stay at the veterinary clinic for additional treatments or tests. We do our best to make your cats stay with us as stress free as possible with the following techniques:
- Cage set-up: Cats feel more comfortable when they can hide. We will use the bottom half of your carrier or one of our hiding boxes for your cat to curl up in. We also cover the bottom half of the door of the kennel with a towel to allow for more privacy. When possible, we use a kennel that is mid-level or higher and all of our kennels are side-by-side, so your cat never needs to face another cat.
- Feeding: Bringing your cat's food from home can be helpful to encourage your cat to eat. Our technicians try to get to know each of our feline patients individually and they recognize when a cat prefers to eat in privacy, or for some cats, if they like to get petted and groomed during meal times.
- Handling: Our team gets special training on how cats prefer to get handled to reduce their stress
- Comfort: If possible, bring a blanket, towel or toy from home that we can put in your cats kennel to make her feel more comfortable. Please note, if these items get soiled, we will wash them, and we make every attempt to return the item to it's rightful owner. Please leave irreplaceable items at home though.