PVH Cat Care Center Gives Felines Something to Purr About

Published on July 18, 2017

Pilchuck Veterinary Hospital gives area felines something to purr about with its Cat Care Center. The Cat Care Center is an area of the hospital specially designed for feline patients – including an exclusive “cats-only” waiting area. Pilchuck’s is the only cat care center in Snohomish County. Heading up the Cat Care Center is Deborah Carlson, DVM, a Pilchuck veterinarian who has a special interest in feline care and is a member of the American Association of Feline Practitioners.

Dr. Carlson explained, “Many cat owners skip those important yearly checkups for their kitties. They want to avoid putting their cats through the stress of a vet visit, from the dreaded carrier and car ride to the unfamiliar and often-dog-filled environment. Our goal with the Cat Care Center at Pilchuck is to make veterinary appointments as stress-free as possible for our feline friends and their people.”

She continued, “Wellness visits are just as important for cats as they are for dogs. Your cat will age, on average, five to 10 times faster than a human. And cats are notorious for hiding their signs of illness. During an annual checkup, your cat’s veterinarian will provide a thorough exam and screen your cat for parasites, dental disease, obesity, hyperthyroidism and a lot more. Early detection and treatment are crucial to helping your cat live a long, happy, pain-free life.”

With cats’ discerning preferences in mind, Pilchuck designed the Cat Care Center with the following features:

  • Separate entrance and waiting area for cats, away from canine patients, to prevent unnecessary anxiety for felines
  • A feline-only examination room away from other exam rooms, to prevent noise and scents from dogs that can create anxiety for feline patients
  • Calming pheromones, a cat tree to allow the cat to acclimate to the environment and cat toys in the feline-online exam room
  • An examination bench so the cat can be examined near its owner (instead of on a cold exam table)

In addition, PVH Cat Care Center staff is committed to and has received additional training on using minimal restraint for exams and blood draws. The Center’s nurses have the ability to draw samples in the exam room with the owner present, which prevents anxiety for both the cat and owner. Specialized equipment in the exam room allows for in-room diagnostics with the owner present – versus “a trip to the back” – for blood pressure measurement, ocular (eye) pressure measurement, eye and ear examinations, dermatologic evaluations, and more. 

“Keeping the cat in the same room and near its owner for most diagnostics will not only help reduce overall stress, but also will provide more accurate test results,” noted Dr. Carlson.

The Cat Care Center team focuses on preventive health care and whole-body wellness for each life stage of each feline patient. Vaccine recommendations are tailored to fit the lifestyle of the cat, and nutrition, exercise and supplement guidelines will be addressed at each appointment to improve the quality of life for feline patients.

For those who want to reward their kitties for a visit well-done, Pilchuck’s Cat Care Center houses a retail section with specially chosen cat toys, nutritional supplements and environmental-enrichment products.