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What To Do When Your Dog Is Afraid Of The Vet

Just like some humans are afraid of going to the dentist or seeing a doctor, some dogs are scared of vets. It’s just something that they might develop over time, perhaps starting from a bad experience they had once. For whatever reason, you need to help your dog get over this fear as they need to visit the vet every now and then. It’s where they get health checkups, jabs, and you really can’t avoid taking them to a vet when they’re feeling sick

So, what can you do to help your dog get over this fear? Here are a few possible solutions that could work for you:

Stay calm

Yes, you need to also stay calm whenever you go to the vet. Often, dogs may fear the vet because they sense anxiety from you. They can feel your energy and see in your body language that you are uncomfortable and afraid. So, they start to worry as well, which can develop into a full-blown phobia. If you are calm and happy when taking them here, they are more likely to feel relaxed. 

Get the vet to come to you

A lot of the time, your dog starts to fear the trip to the vet’s office. They hate getting in the car and being in the building with all the other pets – some of which are clearly in pain or suffering. Instead, you could find a mobile veterinarian that does house calls. They come to you, meaning your dog is safe in a setting they’re used to. It calms the nerves dramatically, meaning they can receive health checks without all the additional stress. 

Use treats

Dogs are very smart animals that pick up on things very quickly. If you start to reward them with treats whenever they go to the vet, they quickly lose their fear of the place. Start with treats when they get in the car, then when they get to the office, and then after the appointment. If you use special treats that they never get at any other time, they start to understand what’s happening and where you’re going. But, they also understand that, if they go through with this, they have a special treat on the other side. 

Visit the vet more regularly

You probably won’t need to visit a vet that often – perhaps once a year or so. Furthermore, you only visit them when there’s a problem, which is why your dog starts getting anxious and afraid. Instead, make frequent visits, even when there’s nothing wrong. Start popping in just to say hi to the staff and generate a positive relationship with them. Your dog becomes more accustomed to the place and stops associating it with pain and suffering. When they eventually need to go for a checkup, they will be far more likely to do so without complaints as they are comfortable with the place. 

Anxiety is natural when it comes to this particular situation. With a few little tips and tricks, you can ease your dog’s fears and make vet appointments far easier for everyone.

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