Just like humans who have the fear of hospitals or needles, there are dogs too who are not so fond of visiting their vets. Our furry pals can get too anxious with the thought of going that they tend to develop what experts call as the White Coat Syndrome.
The good news is that there are actually ways that the pet owners can do to be able to ease this vet clinic visit anxieties that pets may suffer from. Even the vets themselves like Marty Becker are taking steps to lessen the stress levels of pets so that their owners won’t avoid bringing their anxious pets for a checkup. Becker even initiates a practice related on this matter called Fear-Free.
But as pet owners, here are some tips and steps we can do as our very own contribution to help our dog pals.
Give your dog a practice exam at home.
During the exam your vet is going to touch and handle your dog in ways that you normally don’t. For example, vets commonly examine each patient’s eyes, ears, teeth, skin and body condition. This involves bright lights, strange equipment, and up close and personal contact.
Practice basic commands
“He never acts this way at home!” -If vets had a dollar for every time they heard this phrase from a client, they could all retire! Just because his manners seem to go out the window as soon as he crosses the clinic threshold doesn’t mean you have a bad dog. He’s just reacting to his fear.
Visit the office frequently, just to say “Hi!”
One of the major reasons dogs fear the veterinary clinic is simply that it is strange and unknown to them. Dogs rely on their senses of smell, hearing and sight to judge a situation. When they enter a vet hospital they smell fear, other dogs and cats, antiseptics and strange humans. They hear barking, whining, ringing phones, strange voices, etc. And they see a busy environment of people and pets unknown to them.
There are 12 more helpful steps that you may be interested to read on in this link. You can also try consulting a vet, trainer or a dog behavior expert to help you on the matter. In no time, we can all hope more peaceful vet visits for our very own beloved dogs.