Any time you remove your cat from its established territory, it becomes stressed. When away from home base, everything in your cat's world becomes unpredictable - inconsistency is the bane of cats' existence. Over 80% of cats visit the vet’s office before their 1st birthday, but over 50% of cats don’t return until they are in pain or become sick. It's important to maintain at least annual veterinary exams.
Here are some tips for making your vet visits more tolerable for your cat:
Carrier - Cats quickly associate the carrier with a scary trip outside their comfort zone. Leave the carrier out and train your cat to go into the carrier by tossing in a treat, or feeding in the carrier.
Smells - The vet's office smells very different than home, so take along a blanket, or something your cat normally sleeps on. Put the item down on the exam table so there are familiar scents nearby.
Drives - Take your cat on short drives that don't end in a vet visit. Cats become afraid of car rides because they associate them with the vet visit.
Cover -The vet office waiting room can be very stressful for your cat. Be sure to keep your cat inside the carrier and cover it with a blanket to block the view.
Pheromones - Try a spray of pheromones inside the carrier a few minutes before you leave - this will help to relax your cat.