The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) seeks to encourage and facilitate good quality veterinary care for cats. However, we recognize that there are unique challenges and difficulties in bringing your cat to a veterinary practice, including:
- Cats often do not travel well.
- Cats do not feel safe when they are away from their normal home territory.
- Cats are highly sensitive to unusual sights, sounds and smells.
- Most cats prefer quiet and solitude.
- Most cats are highly susceptible to stress and anxiety.
- Most cats are highly stressed by dogs and other cats being in close proximity at the practice.
- Cats need to be handled gently, with care and respect in the practice.
- Cats have unique medical requirements that Cat Friendly Practices are capable of providing.
The AAFP created the Cat Friendly Practice program to help veterinary practices meet the wide range of unique needs of cats in a veterinary practice setting. An extensive self-assessment checklist was designed to demonstrate that Cat Friendly Practices:
- Understand the unique needs of cats and have made veterinary visits more cat-friendly.
- Understand how to approach and handle cats in a gentle, empathetic and caring manner.
- Have an appropriate standard of equipment needed to investigate and treat feline diseases.
- Meets a standard for the facilities and care for hospitalized cats.