Veterinarian - Heart of Florida - Haines City and Winterhaven, FLHeart of Florida

Taking your pet to the Veterinarian

If you pet is displaying any of these signs give a call today to schedule an appointment 863-421-2338.


  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Change in appetite-decreased or increased
  • Change in normal activity level: lethargy, hyperactivity, or restlessness
  • Limping
  • Sudden inability to move back legs
  • Crying in pain when touched
  • Clumsy or disoriented behavior
  • Seizures
  • Any loss of consciousness
  • Coughing, especially at night
  • Panting in a cat
  • Any difficulty breathing or labored breathing
  • Any blue, purple, or pale hue to the tongue and gums
  • Sudden collapse
  • Excessive drooling
  • Straining in the litter box without producing any uring
  • Crying out while urinating
  • Change in urination: location, frequency, amount, color, smell
  • Bloated abdomen
  • Sneezing excessively
  • Uncontrolled bleeding
  • Nose-bleed or bruising anywhere on body
  • Any unusual odor
  • Hair loss
  • Runny eyes or nose
  • Squinting

Tips on Taking Your Cat to the Veterinarian


  • Always transport the cat in a carrier or other safe container.
  • Train cats to view the carrier as a safe haven and “home away from home.” Keep the carrier out in the home. Put treats, favorite toys, or blankets inside to entice the cat into the carrier.
  • Carriers with both top and front openings are recommended. Top-loading carriers allow for stress-free placement and removal of the cat and enable them to be examined while remaining in the bottom half of the carrier.
  • Bring the cat’s favorite treats, toys, and blanket.
  • If the cat has previously had negative experiences at a veterinary hospital, the veterinarian may prescribe a short-duration anti-anxiety medication that should be given approximately one hour prior to the visit.


  • Take the cat for regular rides in the carrier, starting with very short ones, to places other than the veterinary hospital.
  • Because cats may get carsick, do not feed the cat for at least an hour prior to travel.


  • Reward desired behaviors, even small ones, with treats, verbal praise, and other things the cat likes (e.g., brushing, massaging, playing).
  • Remain calm and speak in a soft voice to help the cat remain calm. If a situation is upsetting for the pet owner, the cat may do better if that person leaves the room.
  • Always allowed a trained veterinary team member to handle the cat. Even the sweetest and most laid-back cat can become aroused and fearful in a strange environment. Anxiety may cause the cat to act out of character and bite or scratch.

Think your pet may have an allergy? Click here to learn more about pet allergies.