How to avoid fear of the vet

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dog afraid of the vet

It is totally normal for a dog to be afraid of the vet, since when we go there to visit it is usually to do something that ends up hurting, such as giving a vaccine, healing a wound or passing a review in which it surely feels quite uncomfortable.

But just because it is normal for a dog to be scared when he goes to the vet clinic does not mean that it is a good behavior, since they have a bad time and over time things get worse.

That is why from we want to teach you how to help your puppy, so that his visits to the vet are much more bearable with these simple guidelines that we can all carry out.

Index of contents

  • 1 Tips to Eliminate Vet Phobia
    • 1.1 He comes to you more often
    • 1.2 Let your dog spend his energy before the visit
    • 1.3 Avoid the nerves and use positive reinforcement
    • 1.4 Be careful with routines, avoid them
    • 1.5 Use your imagination to divert his attention
  • 2 Human contact is very important

Tips to Eliminate Vet Phobia

Obviously we are not going to make our dog lose his fears with a few simple words or gestures, we must put into practice a series of very simple tips that will help him to overcome his panics easily.

scared dog at vet

For this it is essential that we as owners are always very calm and do not lose patience with our dog, applying these guidelines he will lose fear little by little and possibly in less than a month he has overcome it.

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Although you should bear in mind that some dogs cost a little more than others, if your dog takes a few weeks longer than normal … don’t worry and it persists, you will end up achieving it.

He comes to you more often

Do not worry, you should not pay for each visit you make … You simply must go to make a visit of more or less two or three minutes and leave. Talk to the vet so that when you go to visit, always give your dog a treat and give him some cuddles.

With this we seek to associate the visit to the vet with a positive memory, to go often without doing anything, just to visit and also get a prize is something super good that your dog will not forget.

This way when he comes for something real like a vaccination or a review, he will think that it is a visit and simply wait for his award. It is what is known as positive reinforcement education.

Let your dog spend his energy before the visit

When a dog is afraid of the vet, he tends to transform his energy into anxiety, because he simply does not want to be there. If we give our dog a great walk before his visit to the vet we will make him waste that excess energy.

Even if we do a little sport with him or take him to a dog park to play with other dogs, he will spend much of his energy and therefore will suffer less stress.

Avoid the nerves and use positive reinforcement

Dogs have a sixth sense and are able to easily detect our mood, if they perceive that we are nervous, they will think that something is wrong and they will also be nervous.

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That is why we must go totally calm and without stress to the veterinary visit, caressing our dog and transmitting calm to him if we see that he alters a little. But beware, we must use positive reinforcement for this.

dog in consultation

A bad example is petting our dog if he is nervous, scared or trembling … because he will think that we reward him for being like this. A good example is ordering him to sit, lie down, get up … and caress and reward him for it, this way he will think that it is because he has done the exercises well and we will also keep his mind busy.

Be careful with routines, avoid them

It is very common to take the car when you go to the vet, our dog memorizes that and will know that if we take the car it is because it is time to go to the vet, something that scares him a lot.

That is why it is recommended to avoid this type of routines and go to the veterinary clinic taking a quiet walk with our dog. Failing that, if we can not because it is far, we must accustom the dog to go by car not only to the vet, but to more places such as the dog park or the bush.

Try to make an appointment with the vet at different times, do not always go at the same time in the afternoon or morning because your dog will remember him, they have much more memory than we think.

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Use your imagination to divert his attention

Dogs are very intelligent but also very manipulable, we can prevent them from focusing their attention on terror to the vet and try to focus it on something more fun like a game or a smell.

Bringing a toy to the office to play with our dog while we wait is a good idea, it is also a good idea to bring some food such as treats or a special chewy bone for dogs.

If we keep our dog distracted, we will greatly reduce his stress and panic to the vet. It seems absurd, but it is very effective to calm a dog.

dog at vet

Human contact is very important

Although it may sound a little strange, if we get our dog used to being handled, it will be much easier for the vet to carry out the recommended checks.

Massaging our dog on a daily basis is an excellent idea to get him used to letting himself be touched, even when he lets himself be done, we can ask a friend or another member of the family to do it, this way he will allow himself to be touched by different people.

When we go to the appointment with the vet, we should talk to him and explain that our dog is afraid. We must indicate to the vet that as much as possible, we want to stay with him at all times.

If our dog sees us next to him, calm and foolish … he will relax and lose some of his fear. He trusts us and we can help him overcome his fears.