Veterinarians: Ease cats' stress in critical situations

June 14, 2018
Michael Nappier, DVM, DABVP
Michael Nappier, DVM, DABVP

Michael Nappier is assistant professor of community practice in the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia.

"Work with the cat as opposed to against the cat," this veterinary specialist says.

Have you ever, strictly in the interest of well-intentioned treatment, wrestled a cat in the exam room with less-than-pleasant results? It happens.

"The most stressful thing you can do for a cat is forcing it into a position or situation that it doesn't want to be in," says Fetch dvm360 conference speaker Michael Nappier, DVM, DABVP.

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But it doesn't have to be that way. Dr. Nappier says you can work in harmony with the kitty and still achieve the desired results by stopping to consider where the cat wants to be and adjusting to the cat's needs.

"Most of the time, we can get what we need to done without moving the cat too far out of where it wants to be or the position that it naturally wants to be in," he says.

For example, if the cat doesn't wish to come out of its carrier, remove the top of the carrier and perform the examination with the cat inside, he says.

"It only takes a little bit of extra time, and if that's where the cat feels most comfortable, it's going to make you feel more comfortable," says Dr. Nappier.

Watch the video to hear more in Dr. Nappier's own words.

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