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Training Your Dog for the Vet

By on Jan 27, 2016 in Training |

shutterstock_294695720Going to the vet can be an incredibly scary experience for any pet, especially if it’s their first time. The sounds and overwhelming number of smells that your dog is likely to encounter in a vet’s office can easily frighten even the most confident pup. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to help make your dog’s trip to the veterinarian’s office as easy on him/her, and on you, as possible.

Expose Your Pet to the Building

If you know the office that your pet will be visiting for his/her veterinary appointments, a great idea is to help acclimate your pet to this environment by doing a few test visits before your pup even sees a doctor. For example, you might drive by the vet’s office, walk into the waiting room, give your pup some treats, and then leave a minute later. This will help your pet begin to associate the office and all of its smells with a purely positive experience. If your pet is social with people, you may want to ask any vet techs or veterinary assistants who aren’t busy with other clients if they wouldn’t mind giving your dog a treat and a quick pet to help reinforce the positive experience.

Handle Your Dog as Much as Possible at Home

Even if you regularly pet and snuggle your pup, the fact is that your dog will be handled in ways that are very uncommon during their vet appointment. As such, you may want to slowly and gently get your pet used to such handling while he or she is in the comfort and security of their own home. To start, join your pet on the floor or another location where they feel comfortable and slowly, gently start to handle their paws. You can just pick their paws up off of the ground, feel their pads, and touch their nails. Immediately treat your pet if they react positively. If your pet seems at all uncomfortable, give him or her some space and do not proceed. You can then move on to lift your pets ears and lips as if you were performing an exam. If your pet is still comfortable, you can press on their belly and continue to treat for good behavior.

Remember: A Tired Dog is a Happy Dog

The day of your pet’s appointment, you should make sure to thoroughly exercise your pet before heading to the vet’s office. The more tired your dog is, the more likely it is that he or she will be relaxed while at the vet’s office.

At , we know that preparing your pet for unfamiliar experiences can be a stressful experience, and we are here to help you and your pet prepare for all of life’s adventures. If you would like to learn more about the services and training that we offer, contact our Austin dog walkers and trainers today by calling (512) 655-9557.