Confidence Lost – Whole Dog Journal
When Woody (my three-year-old pit bull-mix) was a tiny pet, simply one other one in a litter of 9 that I used to be fostering for my native shelter, he was all the time blissful to obtain medical consideration (vaccines, deworming, and even neuter surgical procedure!), because it got here layered with blissful consideration from the shelter veterinary workers. He loves folks, so it was all good.
Woody’s pleasant, blissful perspective about having a stranger greet and deal with him in an intimate manner survived all these visits, in addition to many extra visits to a daily veterinary hospital. Let’s see… there have been a minimum of one or two vaccine visits; one “dietary indiscretion” incident (he ate all of the meals I had set out for the 11 Great Dane foster puppies, after I had already fed him his dinner); the time he swallowed a good friend’s canine’s mini-tennis ball; the staples he wanted on his rear legs (slashed his wrists on one thing sharp within the grass, sliding for a ball); the time he tore a toenail (largely) off; a foxtail go to or two; a bizarre bump on his face that required minor surgical procedure to take away it… He’s been to the vet a lot! And till final yr, he was all the time blissful to trot into the hospital, hop onto the dimensions, be examined by anybody, and even go “into the back” for his staples or bandages or injection of “Let’s make you vomit!” treatment.
And then he received sick with a gastrointestinal bug that left him significantly dehydrated, and I left him to be hospitalized in a single day. I’m sure they didn’t mistreat him in any manner! But ever since I left him there that evening, after I take him again to the vet now – most just lately for a canine influenza vaccine – he’s reluctant to enter the hospital, and he shivers and shakes within the ready and examination rooms.
I’ve began attempting to remediate this anxious response, stopping by the observe to only weigh him and feeding him tons of high-value treats within the minute or two that we’re there. And, as a result of scared and/or anxious canine have the potential to chew, and I wouldn’t blame any veterinarian or veterinary workers member in the event that they felt safer engaged on my huge, muscular canine if he had been carrying a muzzle, I additionally am going to begin acclimating Woody to carrying one. I need it to be a well-recognized, reinforcing expertise in case we ever want it, slightly than an extremely scary factor abruptly strapped to his face in a medical emergency.
But after engaged on the article on this concern about Fear Free veterinary practices (see web page 6), I’m additionally going to encourage my vets to hunt out Fear Free certification – and maintain my eyes peeled for a Fear Free licensed veterinary observe to modify to if want be. Because I believe I’m going to want an entire group of individuals to get Woody previous his newfound apprehension about receiving medical care. And that’s simply no strategy to undergo life – significantly in case you are as accident-prone as my goofy Woody.