Two leading Kent vet practices have received a prestigious endorsement of their top-quality care for cats with recognition from the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM).

Cinque Ports Vets’ Rye practice has been recognised as a silver-level cat-friendly clinic (CFC) by the ISFM, while the vets’ Lydd surgery has also earned a bronze award for its feline care.

Alex Brotherston, head veterinary nurse and cat advocate at Linnaeus-owned Cinque Ports, said the award was a great recognition of the practices’ determination to promote wellbeing and the highest possible standards of care for all cats visiting them or being hospitalised at either site.

Alex said: “We’re very proud to have achieved silver cat-friendly clinic status at Rye and bronze at Lydd. These awards really have been a big team effort across our practices and are a fitting reward for everyone’s hard work and dedication.

“We have ensured we provide a low-stress environment which respects the natural needs of our feline patients. It’s a continuous priority across our practices and we always look to keep improving.

“We have regular meetings to discuss changes we’ve made and things we can still change, with our ultimate aim of achieving the CFC gold award.”

The ISFM launched the cat-friendly clinic initiative to encourage veterinary clinics to make changes to improve the welfare of cats in their care.

The programme advises practices on how to make their environment as welcoming as possible for cats, as well as providing support in staff training, handling techniques and cat-specific client care.

Alex added: “The ISFM examine the provision of facilities and staff activities and attitudes aimed at reducing stress in cats, both as in-patients and out-patients.

“Its criteria include having separate dog and cat waiting areas, feline-friendly hospitalisation cages and veterinary equipment specifically for treating cats.

“Most importantly, staff are encouraged to approach and handle cats sensitively and respectfully.

“Clinics are also expected to maintain high standards of veterinary care, including continuing to update their knowledge of feline medicine as new knowledge becomes available.”

Cinque Ports also has practices in Ashford, Hawkhurst, Tenterden and Wye. For more information, visit either

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