During a house call, Lisa Benisek, doctor of veterinary medicine, was asked to sit down and play the piano. Her client was a piano instructor, and the woman’s cat felt more comfortable to come out from hiding when the piano was playing.
“I thought it was a little interesting, but the cat really did respond well,” Benisek said.
This is one of many unique experiences the veterinarian has encountered since starting her cats-only house calls practice nearly eight years ago.
Benisek, who has practiced for more than 23 years, had worked in veterinary clinics when she realized there was a niche that needed to be filled.
“People love their cats,” she said. “They are so relieved when their cats can have medical service provided in the home without the stressful ride to the vet.”
Benisek provides different services such as kitten wellness, blood testing for illnesses and routine annual exams. Working mostly out of the Lansing area, Benisek has built her client base to about 650 people and works “pretty much every day.”
Getting down on the cats’ level is something that really helps put the cats at ease, Benisek said. Bringing cat treats and a blanket for the floor are some of the ways she tries to make her patients feel more at ease.
“It just tends to not trigger any defense mechanisms in them,” she said. “I just feel that I can read cats, so I guess I feel that that’s my strength.”