“Taking the pet out of petrified”
Fear free clinics aim to prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety and stress in our pets through positive reinforcement.
At Thameswood, we want dogs to come bounding through the door and our Youth club service has been key to this successfully happening in younger dogs.
Through monthly socialisation visits they learn to enjoy being weighed, health checked and examined by our nurses – reinforced by lots of attention and of course treats!
Extending this to older or new dogs not only means less stress for your pet but also a less stressful visit for you as an owner and a more thorough and relaxed examination by the vet. Socialisation visits are always recommended for nervous dogs and these simply involve popping in at quieter times of the day to sit in reception or consult rooms and have lots of positive reinforcement (treats, toys, cuddles) and leave again.
This can be built up to include weighing, walking in and out of the kennel and gentle handling to mimic a health check without any injections or medication being provided.
JUST MENTION YOU HAVE A ‘FEAR FREE PET’ AND WE KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN
We encourage owners to work with us if they have truly nervous dogs by allowing themselves plenty of time to take visits slowly, perhaps stopping if we decide your pet has had enough and continuing another time [at no extra charge].
We can make a plan with you to perhaps use medication that doesn’t sedate but lowers anxiety and can be rubbed on your dogs gums shortly before you leave your house.
We can decide whether it might be good to use appeasing pheromones in the car on you, or in a collar to make your dog feel safe and less worried. Once at the clinic we minimise waiting times, we can reduce surrounding noise and we always use appeasing pheromones in all the rooms and on our clothing.
Fear free isn’t just for dogs – cats become quickly stressed when taken out of their normal environment.
Fear free for cats at Thameswood means calming pheromone infused blankets to place over carriers on arrival. The use of these pheromones throughout the clinic including on the vets prior to handling, treats and of course the most important minimal restraint can contribute to far less stressed cats.
We have a variety of techniques and anti anxiety drugs [powder] that can be given prior to visits and we also administer these as a routine as well as local anaesthetic gels when taking bloods.
Want to know more then please contact your nearest clinic to speak to a member of staff.
FEAR FREE PETS MEANS ‘MAKING LIFE BETTER FOR EVERYONE’
2-3pm 13th November at our Greenbridge clinic
3-4pm 14th November at our Purton Road clinic
*Spaces are limited so contact us today*
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