Caring Clare helps to keep cats feline fine

Curious, independent, affectionate and playful, it’s easy to see why cats make great companions.

However, there are times when the stress of visiting the vets can make even the most playful puss turn into the fiercest feline.

Now veterinary nurse Clare Burrows is sharing her knowledge and experience to help owners better understand their cat’s unique nature and needs to keep them healthy and happy.

Clare, who works at Lancaster Vets in Bowerham, Lancaster, has just completed her advanced certificate in feline behaviour through the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM), the veterinary division of the charity International Cat Care.

She has always been passionate about cats and enjoys advising clients at Lancaster Vets about their cat’s individual problems and how to manage stress both at home and at the vets.

The practice in Bowerham Road was the first in the area to earn ISFM cat-friendly clinic status, thanks to its cat-only consult rooms and kennels, waiting room facilities with elevated shelves for cat carriers and training in how team members handle cats.

Clare said: “There is something about cat behaviour that has always fascinated me as they are very unique characters that require a much different way of being handled than dogs. Our aim here is to ensure we provide the best possible care for our patients and an excellent service for our clients, so it is important to keep on improving our knowledge and training. Completing the certificate enabled me to learn a lot about their behavioural traits and educate owners about their pets, from when they are kittens to old age.

“Because cats become stressed in practices, owners often avoid coming to the vets, which is not good for their pet’s health and wellbeing and it means they are more difficult for vets and nurses to handle. With a bit of training and advice on how to handle their cats at home, as well as the best carriers to transport them in, it can make coming to the vets much less stressful.”

Clare, a qualified Registered Veterinary Nurse (RVN) who has worked at Lancaster Vets for eight years, owns a cat called Mille.

Becoming an ISFM cat-friendly clinic helped Lancaster Vets become more inviting to cats and their owners, reduce the stress of visiting the vets, and make treating and handling cats easier for veterinary teams.