Wednesday, February 8, 2017

How to Keep Your Dog Relaxed During Vet Visits


We make dog food that helps pets feel their best every day. Because it's a topic we care about a lot, we want to focus on another essential element of great pet health. That element is professional care from a vet. Just as it's important for people to go to a doctor for regular checkups even if they feel fine, dogs need to be seen by a vet on a regular basis.

Vets play a central role in dogs' health, which is why we always recommend that owners take their time and find a vet they feel truly comfortable working with. But even if you personally feel great about the relationship with your vet, your dog may have different thoughts. Dogs of all sizes get anxious, overwhelmed, or downright worried when they visit the vet.

When this happens, it causes a lot of stress for the dog's owner as well. If you've had this kind of experience at the vet and wish you could avoid it in the future, we've got five tips to help you out:

1. Make Visit Days a Fun Adventure

You want your dog to associate going to the vet with positive feelings instead of negative ones. A great way to make this happen is by always taking your dog somewhere fun like a favorite dog park after a visit.

2. Create a Massage Routine

Dogs do best when they have routines to follow. One routine you can create for vet visits is giving your dog a relaxing massage. You'll want to practice this prior to the day of a visit. Practicing will give you a chance to figure out what type of touch your dog finds most relaxing. Then once you know what works best, you can apply this technique multiple times throughout a vet visit.

3. Take Initiative with Brushing

A common source of stress during vet visits is dogs aren't used to having their mouths opened. You can reduce this source of anxiety by regularly brushing your dog's teeth. Not only will this habit make your vet visits smoother, but it will noticeably help your dog's oral health.


4. Refresh Basic Obedience

Basic obedience commands can help a lot during a vet visit. If there are certain commands that your dog knows but may be a little rusty with, it's worth doing a little refresher work before your next vet appointment.

5. Use Treats and Toys

Both dog treats and toys can help distract your dog or change its state of mind to being much happier. Having these items easily accessible when you go to the vet may be exactly what's needed to avoid any stressful situations.

By making visit days a fun adventure, creating a massage routine, taking initiative with brushing, refreshing basic obedience and using toys & treats, you'll be able to make your visits to the vet a great experience for everyone who's involved.

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