Positive Training Tips
February 1, 2021
Prepare your dog before your next veterinary appointment
- Start practicing basic commands at home such as “watch”, “sit”, “down” and “come”.
- Do not feed him/her before the visit. Carry some really good treats with you as a reward for proper behavior.
- Get to your appointment early so you have plenty of time to check in. If your pet is nervous take a calm walk around outside to allow some time for adjustment. Allow sniffing and plenty of time for urination and defecation. Remember to bring a bag for clean up and ask if stool sample is recommended when you check in. If your pet is seeing the veterinarian for a urinary tract problem forgo this as the Doctor may want a urine sample.
- You need to be calm and relaxed in order to help your dog have the same attitude. Think positive and have the attitude of a leader so he/she feels secure.
- Avoid rewarding or permitting nervous or aggressive behaviors, redirect to the appropriate behavior and if necessary go outside to avoid over stimulation.
- If your dog has a lot of energy, exercise him/her before the appointment to help burn up the excess. A long walk or a game of catch or ball will help take the edge off before the appointment.
- Teach the commands “on” and “off” to help him/her understand the scale and table. An example to practice at home- if you allow your pet on the couch use that as the “table” and have him/her get “on” and “off” on command. Then use the same command to get your pet on and off the scale at the appointment. Use really good treats when you come to make the reward worthwhile.
- Acclimate your pet to handling of the ears, feet, mouth so when you come in for an exam he/she is accustomed to being touched. Touch those areas and use food as a reward when your dog doesn’t object. You can practice giving a “pill” by opening the mouth and placing a treat inside.