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Fractious Cat Restraint

Views: 56153 - Comments: 31

Megan Brashear, CVT, VTS (ECC), and Technician Assistant, Sarah Crisp, wrangle Max, a very grumpy cat who is in the ER for an exam and diagnostics. Megan gives some tips on handling aggressive and fractious cats.

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Megan Brashear's picture
Megan Brashear


Enrolled: 07/2011

Sarah Crisp's picture
Sarah Crisp

Enrolled: 08/2011

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Jill Greene's picture

Nicely done, team. Just one note - don't forget to remove bandaids before putting him in his kennel to go home. You don't want THAT cat to come back for a swollen limb!

Sheree Peterson's picture

great video for my class to study about being in control but not harming the cat!! thank you dove.

Julie Poduch's picture

Very helpful,even to a lay person! I have grumpy cats and have difficulty just getting them in the carrier to take to the vet. I'll try the towel trick to control their flailing.

madeline marschak's picture

good camera work, good job! Shows us that going slow, having patience, and willing to create laundry is far better than rough handling and power scruffing.

Megan Brashear's picture

Power scruffing, I like it! I'm glad you're getting some good ideas from the video, if you have enough laundry you can handle ANY cat!

Leslee Chilberti's picture

Amazing video!! I am new to the industry and currently working as an Assistant and going to school for Tech. Since I am still being trained at my Clinic for Assistant this helps a lot because I never know how to handle fractious cats. Thank you so much!!!!!

Sophie Beaulne's picture

This was really helpful. Seeing you being patient, calm and laughing is wonderful. Love your 'happy hat', I'll look into getting that type, ours are nylon and velcro so they don't stay on very much. I guess cat gloves weren't necessary lol.

Megan Brashear's picture

Sophie, don't be too fooled, some of that is nervous laughter... I will use cat gloves in rare situations, but they take away my ability to feel and know what's going on under that towel. In most cases a comforter is thick enough but still allows for enough control to get the job done. Grumpy cats beware!

Robin Gilman's picture

Megan, Thanks for the awesome video. I'm going to school for Vet Technician and I'm also President of a cat rescue and we get a lot of scared, angry, or Feral cats. That video is very helpful for me. Thanks again.

Alissa Woodall's picture

Fantastic video!! I love the cat muzzle you have. Ours is velcro and fabric and it seems to restrict breathing too much for my taste.

Tracie Vestal's picture

I want this video playing on a continuous loop on our treatment floor as we have a lot of new staff being trained regularly! And the big blanket is my favorite restraint trick (and back leg butterfly my favorite blood draw technique) on fractious cats!

karyn wherton's picture

Great viewing, thanks. Just wondering what muzzle you use in the video?

Tamara Cox's picture

Just wanted to tell you guys awesome job! Great video!

Anna Taylor's picture

Great video! I've never seen the type of muzzle you used - we only have the fabric/velco kind which help alot but I can see what you mean about the breathing issue - can you tell me where you got yours?

Peggy Sorensen's picture

this is a great video. I work in AZ where it is hot and I find that using a good size bath towel that is wet (more than damp but not dripping) works much better than large blankets. Many times that cats are surprised that it is wet and it distracts them a little and they are not able to roll over under it. I have had some fractious ones come in for SQ fluids and we take apart cage, place wet towel on them and with minimum (safe) restraint can administer SQ and put carrier back together and then they growl and hiss. It works pretty well with feral cats too. DONT make it too soaking wet or your staff is slipping in water while trying to get towel over feral cat!!!

Debra Olmedo's picture

I love the muzzles!!! Had a chance to try them out yesterday. They worked perfectly.

Kenneth Lopez's picture

Nice job ladies. Although I was a bit concerned you didn't mention his feet while putting the muzzle on. For us seasoned techs we know it, but if a new hire was watching I think it's good to mention those claws need watching too.

Tanya Crocker's picture

Great video. I also have a technique where I will put the blanket over the cat, have them turned so they are not facing me (or position myself so they are not facing me while I place the towel/blanket) and pick them up (the entire body, not just by the legs) holding their legs at the forearm area, you are squeezing inward as you do this. The way you end up positioned is such that you can use your forearms to hug the entire length of the cat, they cannot turn and bite or back up as they are immobilized enough by the towel and you have control over the scratching parts! Works every time. You can easily have someone muzzle from that position too as you bring the towel back and place it or you can turn it into a kitty burrito. I find using too thick a blanket does not work as they can wiggle out as you are unable to hold anything. It sounds a little confusing but it's worked for me for 11 years and I've had a lot of head strong cats in that time. If you want I can send a video.

Sarah Crisp's picture

Tanya, your technique sounds well-practiced and very effective. I also find that my forearms and "hugging" are two of the best defensive tools I have.

And we would LOVE to see your video! You can post it directly on our Facebook page here:

Amanda P's picture

Where did you purchase you purchase your cat muzzles from? We've been combing through our distribute sites (MWI, Butler, etc.) forever and have only come up with the soft cat muzzles...

Nicole Bernardi's picture

I would love to know where you guys purchase your cat muzzles. I would love look at investing in a few.

Susan Mazi's picture

Great job ladies! I'm the go-to person for fractious cats where I work. Quick and decisive works every time.

Kendall Bulcao's picture

This was a great video! Nicely done! My teacher assigned us this video and i really learned a lot :) Thank you Dove, you guys give great advice and really help to understand things!

Emily Daoust's picture

Thank you for the great advice for dealing with angry cats, I will definitely be remembering these tips for the next time I need to do this!

Darcie Harrell's picture

Great video, love the fact you never had to scruff. I never saw an answer as to where the cat muzzle was purchased while looking through the comments. I would also like to try to find this type of muzzle. Thanks!

Brenna Cairncross's picture

Great video, but I would make one little change. I might suggest weighing the cat in the carrier before taking him out, then weighing the carrier and subtracting the carrier weight from the total weight to find the cat's weight. No worries about kitty bolting while you let go to get an accurate weight. If Kitty doesn't have a carrier, weigh the blanket you will be using before hand, place the cat in blanket on the scale, and subtract blanket weight from total weight. A little more math, but maybe a tiny bit safer and you wont have to anger the cat for an extra 30 seconds. Just my two cents. Maybe there is a reason you did not do it this way. Please share.

Megan Brashear's picture

Brenna, nothing at all wrong with your plan! Weighing the cat in the carrier is a great idea to try and get the information you need without angering the cat. For us, our small scales in the treatment area don't fit the carriers and rather than walk the cat all over the hospital we just weighed him after removing him from the carrier. Good thought, the best plan is to be prepared and have a plan of attack before getting the angry kitty out of the carrier!