Every dog has a certain amount of trepidation and anxiety of the unknown, and when it comes to veterinarian visits there are many ways to prepare a fearful dog that can calm the animal and make the visit go smoothly. As a pet owners we are each responsible to a certain extent how our dogs view humans, simply because it is largely our duty to socialize them to interact with humans from an early age. A dog that is ill-prepared to deal with unfamiliar people and places is bound to be a fearful dog for veterinarian visits, and the impact can represent a difficult patient for the veterinarian and a less thorough physical examination for the dog due to it’s antisocial behavior.
One of the best ways to prepare a fearful dog for veterinarian visits is to take the time at home to make the animal become familiar with being touched in unfamiliar ways. It’s important to remember that a veterinarian will touch your dog on every part of it’s body during an examination, and if a pet owner has never touched their dog in those areas a vet is in for a tough time performing their duties on a fearful dog. You can prepare a fearful dog for veterinarian visits by simulating an examination at home to make your pet accustomed to being touched in strange new ways. This is best approached by devoting a week to each body area such as ears, mouth, hind quarters, abdomen etc., and then after a dog has become used to the activity moving on to a new body part.
After a dog becomes used to being touched in different and new ways, to prepare a fearful dog for veterinarian visits then entails helping the animal socialize with new people and strange surroundings. Taking your dog to locations where there are a number of diverse types of people allows them to interact with humans of all shapes, sizes and races which will help calm your dog when it meets new humans at the veterinarian’s office. Also, don’t forget to give your dog the opportunity to get used to animals of other species such as cats that they may come into contact with at the next veterinarian visit.
A pet owner can prepare a fearful dog for veterinarian visits by remaining calm themselves and not making a big deal out of the occasion. Get to the appointment a little early and take your dog for a 10 or 15 minute walk before entering the building to give it a chance to burn off a bit of energy and to relieve itself. Stay upbeat and jovial during the vet visit and chances are that your dog will be soothed somewhat by your lack of concern.