Reduce Stress on a Vet Visit – It Starts at Home
Based on a study done by Bayer Veterinary Healthcare, 26% of dog owners and 38% of cat owners get stressed out just thinking about taking their pet to the veterinarian. 37% of dog owner and 58% of cat owners say their pet hates going to the vet. We want to help you decrease this percentage. Below are some tips that you, the parents, can do at home to help decrease stress for your pet and still give them the care they need to stay happy and healthy for many years.
- Puppy classes – Take your puppy to a puppy class between 7-12 weeks of age. Make sure the trainer uses reward based training methods.
- Fear-free visits – Bring your dog by the hospital just to get a treat and say hello. This allows them to get used to the hospital and associate the experience with fun things. And it is FREE!
- Handling – Get your puppy used to having their feet and their ears touched. Look at your dog’s mouth and get them used to having your fingers in there (helps with teeth brushing too). ALWAYS reward with a treat after you do this.
- Withhold food from your dog the morning of your visit so they come hungry and ready to take treats.
- Watch your emotions. If you are stressed, your pet will pick up on your stress. Take 3 deep breaths and try to remain calm.
- Get out of your car calmly and be encouraging to your dog.
- Use Thundershirts™
- Teach your dog basic commands: sit, stand, lie down, and turn around.
- Bring your dog’s favorite toy and treat(s) with you to your appointment.
- Pet sedation protocols are ok if needed to use before you leave home. Check with your veterinarian to determine the best choice.
Our goal is to make you and your pet’s visit less stressful! Everyone wins if the owner feels less anxious about bringing their pet to the veterinarian, the pet feels less stress and we are able to give your pet the best health care they deserve to allow them to live a happy and healthy life.