August 12, 2020
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Going to the veterinarian can be stressful for everyone, but it’s especially so for your cat. It’s essential to give them a safe space where they are being transported to and from the vet’s office. So here is a look at the best cat carrier for vet visits.

What to Look for in a Cat Carrier

When you are looking for a cat carrier for vet visits there are a few key items you want to look out for. First is you want something sturdy. Think of this like a car seat for a baby but instead this for a cat. If you were to get into a car accident you want something that would actually protect your cat.

Second you want a carrier that provides easy access. We aren’t going for posh and glamorous we are definitely looking for a carrier with a lot of practical features. Ideally your carrier would have both a top and front entrance. This gives you vet access to the cat without having to rip them out of the carrier when they are afraid. If you don’t have a double door access carrier, a carrier that can have the top easily removed would also be sutiable.

Third item is I always want to know is how easily can the carrier be cleaned and sterilized. Thing just happen and especially after being exposed to other animals we disinfection and throughly rinse our carriers.

Top Picks for Vet Visit Cat Carriers

Here is a look at a few of the best rated carrier for vet trips.

Petmate Two Door Top Load Carrier

We love this model so much we have two of them, or well maybe it’s we have too many cats living here. But anyhow this trusted cat carrier has held up beautifully. It has taken many a trips to the vet in the last five years and we have not had to replace either one.

An important feature to note on this model is the top and bottom screw together. The plastic side latches always worry me on coming apart especially with our larger cats.

Shop the Petmate Top Load Carrier

Lollimeow Cat Backpack Carrier

This option is great but only if you have a cat that is 10 pounds or less. So for some of my guys this transportation option is out. What is most appealing for me and my hands are free and I can carrier the weight all on my back. When I am doing solo runs and have a bag of medicine and paper to take home this is just a whole lot easier.

The company also had safety in mind when crafting this cat carrier. There is a hook to buckle the carrier into your car. As well there is a harness attachment inside the backpack for extra security.

Shop Cat Back Carrier

How to Get Your Cat in Carrier for Vet

Make Your Carrier Cozy

First off it’s important to prepare your cat’s carrier with some nice and cozy goodies. This could be one of their favorite fleece blankets, towel, a carrier pad, or even a small pet bed. Do note that whatever goes in should be something you’re okay with potentially getting peed on or messy. I highly recommend machine washing all the cozy things you put in the carrier when your return from the vet.

Some also may add toys in the carrier or treats but I find that my cats know they are on the way to the vet and don’t have any interest in them. I opt to just leave the toys at home and bring a small bag of treats in the car just in case their appetite changes.

Add Some Pheromones

Cat pheromones go a long way when it comes to going to the vet. We have a handy cat pheromone spray that we use on the blankets that go in the carrier and we also as we will talk about below spritz the car prior to leaving. This spray helps your cat feel calm and safe in just 15 minutes after its use. And no need to worry about reapplying its calming effect lasts up to 6 hours.

Introduce Your Cat to the Carrier

If this is a first trip for your cat or they are very uncomfortable with the cat carrier its a good idea to have a carrier introduction period. Add the carrier (with its cozy goodies) to a main hang out area for your cat. This way your cat can check it out and scent it up with their smell, it’s how they make things their own.

You will find that cats are very investigatory animals and will be quick to check out this new piece. Let them cozy into their newfound cave. One day you may even want to close the door on them for a few minutes and then letting them back out. This allows them to not associate every memory with the cat carrier with the bad experience of going to the vet.

Scooping Your Cat Safely Into Carrier

So believe it or not there is some technique to getting your cat safely into the carrier. If you ignore these pointers you may find you cat totally splayed out and gripping on to every edge of the carrier he or she can find.

  1. Place the carrier on the floor with the door pointing toward the ceiling. Make sure to leave the door open.
  2. Now it’s time to find your cat. Place a towel over your cat’s body and gently pick them up. At the same time you will want to be wrapping the towel around tightly enough to confine her limbs but not so tightly it will restrict breathing. So make sure to leave the head uncovered.
  3. Quickly lower your cat purr-ito into the carrier and shut the door.

Keeping your Cat Calm on the Way to the Vet

Blanket for Security

For some cats completely covering your cat carrier with a blanket offers them extra security. Thinking of it like being totally wrapped up and hidden away from anything scary.

Buckle Up

This is an important safety step. Make sure that you securely buckle in your cat carrier and lock the seatbelt so the carrier doesn’t shift as you driving. Just think how nauseating and uncomfortable it would be to slide around the backseat of your car.

More Cat Pheromones

Not only do we prep the blanket that is going to go inside the carrier with a spritz of cat pheromones

ThunderShirt for Cats

This company does amazing things for both cats and dogs. If you haven’t heard of them their patented ThunderShirt design applies gentle, constant pressure to calm anxiety, fear, and over excitement due to a variety of environmental triggers.

Offer Comfort

Lastly we want to remind you to comfort your cat. Let me them know you are still there. Sometimes your voice is even helpful. I have full conversations with cat sometimes on the way to the vet. If my husband and I are double teaming the trip into the vet I will actually sit in the back with the cat and stick a finger or two in the cage. I normally get lots of rubs when this happens.

Conclusion on the Best Cat Carrier for Vet Visit

We hope these tips help make your next trip with your cat to the veterinarian go a little smoother. If you have any other hot tips we missed or help experiences to share be sure to let us know in the comment section below.

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Robin Griffin

After adopting one two... well many cats I found myself newly dubbed the "Cat Lady." Now I take it in stride and share my favorite tips, tools, and products that we use in our cat household.

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