The programme, a worldwide initiative from the International Society of Feline Medicine, is designed to help reduce the stress that a trip to the vets can cause our feline friends and their owners. The idea is that if owners find the experience of visiting a vet less stressful for their pet, they are more likely to visit more often for preventative care and not just for emergencies.
To achieve accreditation, the veterinary practice has to prove a rigorous adherence to a set of criteria set out by the ISFM. That includes provision of facilities and demonstration of staff activities and attitudes, aimed at reducing stress in cats visiting the clinic, both as in and out-patients.
To ensure their continued accreditation, Vale Vets, part of the IVC Evidensia group, have recently upgraded their cat friendly waiting room and have built a cat specific consult room, dedicated to examining their feline clients in a stress free environment.
Another requirement is to have a cat advocate within the practice. This job was eagerly taken up by vet, Vicky Morton. She is very proud of the clinic’s ongoing accreditation and the strides they have taken to ensure stress-free visits for the cats in the local area.
“Cat Friendly Clinic accreditation means we’ve committed to delivering high standards of feline care, with compassion and expertise. Our cat facilities are specifically geared towards the reduction of stress and all our staff are trained in gentle handling techniques.” said Vicky. She went on to say,
“Through our accreditation, we want to show cat owners that routine preventive care, and a prompt visit if their cat seems unwell, will help to give it a longer, healthier and happier life.”