Today's Fear Free Friday tip involves the dreaded scale! I can't blame dogs or cats who won't readily jump up onto the scale, because, let's face it, it is not fun to be weighed in a room full of people!
This may or may not be the reason that our pets sometimes balk at the scale, but it is mine....
Regardless of the reason, we do see pets who seem to be terrified of the scale! We can try to use innovative ways to make the scale less scary. Treats, toys, or positive reinforcement may be all it takes for some to stand on the scale. Sometimes we can weigh our smaller pets inside their carriers and then deduct the weight of the carrier. Sometimes, we can cover the large scale with something that disguises it, such as a yoga mat or beach towel.
We should try to avoid forcing them up on the scale while they tremor in fear. If we can make the scale a happier place, we have eliminated on fear in the vet office, and we have a better chance of getting an accurate weight.
Location, Location, Location
We do not always know the reason that some pets fear the vet office. We are sure that the reasons vary from pet to pet. For some, it may be where the exam takes place. Some animals fear being up on the high table. Some animals fear being on the floor and having a doctor and technician hovering over them.
We think it's important to take each pet on an individual basis. If you know your pet to be afraid of heights, we are more than happy to do the exam on the floor. If you know your pet prefers seeing you face to face during the exam, we can put your pet up on the table. We have examined pets on the tables, floor, benches, laps, scales, and carriers.
We are more than happy to keep your pet as comfortable as possible during the exam. If you know of your own pet's preference, please let us know. Anything we can do to make your pet more comfortable is a good thing!
Today's tip involves music. It has been said that "music soothes the savage beast." Well, savage or not, it can definitely be calming. Studies have shown that animals (and people) show significant less signs of stress when classical music is being played.
This can be implemented on the way to the clinic and even during the exam. Play classical music in the car or on your phone to calm your pet.
Classical music played at home during storms, construction, fireworks, or other scary events can also be helpful for our stressed pets.
Today's tip is one that can make medicating your own pet at home a little bit easier! We don't want them to be afraid to be treated at home, either.
To pill a pet, it is easiest often to hide the pill in food, if possible. We've heard everything from cheese to peanut butter (NEVER sugar free) to "meatballs" of food, to mini marshmallows, but sometimes a good treat can help the medicine go down. Pill pockets are also commercially available to hide medicatio...ns, and these can be helpful, as well.
To administer eye medication, it can help to spread some cheese or peanut butter on a cleanable wall or refrigerator, just above eye level. As the animal is reaching up to lick, you can often sneak the medicine in.
This trick may also help for ear medication or baths, or even nail trims!
Midwest Veterinary Hospital
30550 Euclid Ave
Wickliffe, Ohio, 44092
Use the map below for directions!
Surgery drop off is between 8:00-8:30 am