At Fox Valley Animal Hospital, we pride ourselves on our continual efforts to provide happy visits for your dog. We make a commitment to constantly improve the service you and your pet experiences at our Wahroonga vet clinic.
There are many reasons your dog may feel anxious at the thought of visiting the vets. One of these reasons may be from a previous negative experience elsewhere.
Let’s take a look at the ways our Wahroonga vet clinic aims to make your dog’s visit with us as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.
First impressions count
Part of a young dogs’ development includes learning new skills and taking in its environment.
It’s during these critical weeks to months that your puppy’s experiences should be positive ones. That’s why we encourage all new puppy parents to bring in their new arrival for a visit that doesn’t include vaccinations or treatments. Helping your puppy have a positive reason to visit our vet clinic helps stave off anxiety and fear later on.
During your puppy’s visit, we can make the initial point of contact with his future animal hospital a pleasurable one. Enthusiastic vet nurses ready for a puppy cuddle greet you. And we always make sure there is a ready supply of the all-important tasty treats.
We can gain trust and reinforce a positive relationship between your puppy and Fox Valley Animal Hospital. With attention and treats as a reward, your puppy starts associating vet visits with fun.
The Wahroonga Vet Clinic Four-Legged Friends
As vets and vet nurses, we’re so fortunate to be able to bring our own four-legged friends to work with us. Our hospital dogs are great for staff morale. But they also play an important role in looking after our newest puppies through to our senior pet patients.
Both Holly and Heather (2 of our regular resident dogs) greet each patient that walks into our vet clinic. Our doggy nurses sit in on consults and help ease the nerves of anxious dogs. New puppies learn straight away correct doggy etiquette from our matriarch, Heather. And it’s quite a common occurrence to see our staff dogs sitting quietly by the cage door of a sick pet patient, looking out for them.
One of the main reason we run puppy pre-school on site at our Wahroonga vet clinic is the long lasting relationship we see our puppies develop with the hospital. Puppy pre-school is a vital and important time to socialise and teach your new canine friend skills that will set him up to be a well behaved adult dog.
The positive playful environment at the hospital means all our puppies bound through our door at every visit. The connection is cemented that our animal hospital is a fun, safe environment to be in.
It is also a familiar place, the smells, the sounds, the flooring.
We want your puppy to feel like it’s their second home. And puppy pre-school is amazingly helpful in achieving this goal.
In the long run, participating in puppy pre-school can help reduce the stress of hospital stays during de-sexing or treatment later on. When your dog feels sick and stressed, feeling OK about the place they visit to get well can make a huge difference.
The already anxious dog
Not all dogs start their relationship with their vet on the right paw. If you have a dog that has missed out on puppy pre-school, has had a turbulent past history or is nervous by nature, we encourage you to drop in for social visits regularly.
These visits are not about seeing the vet or receiving treatments. It is a very effective way of building up a positive association with us and your dog. It helps familiarise your dog with the sights and smells of the animal hospital. It becomes a place where they meet new faces, such as our vet nurses (of both the two-legged and four pawed variety). And most importantly, it gives your dog a chance to visit without being touched, treated or stressed out.
At Fox Valley Animal Hospital, we believe in going the extra mile to make the vet clinic experience a positive one. We have treats in all the rooms of the hospital that are very liberally handed out! We also have special diffusers that emit a pheromone to help reduce stress and calm anxious dogs. This product is called DAP. It is an odorless, non-sedative appeasing synthetic pheromone, it helps during stressful situations by making your dog feel more relaxed.
Our crazy vet nurse techniques have everyone talking (heading)
All the vet nurses at Fox Valley Animal Hospital are animal mad. This means we go beyond the “normal” to ensure your dog receives the best possible experience. You may have wondered why our nurses jump up and down in front of your pet during an annual vaccination. Or why we gently tap your pet on the head during a blood sample. We have even been seen to whistle, clap and dance all in one go….
It’s not because we’ve been sneaking the red cordial.
It’s because we know that if your pet is distracted, chances are they won’t notice that needle during the annual check up. They won’t mind being held for a blood sample when they can feel is the gentle tap and pat on the head.
Giving your dog something else to focus on during a procedure reduces stress, anxiety and anticipation of the unknown. We’ve all mastered the skills of distraction. As crazy as we look to the pet parent, it’s all about the experience your dog receives. So next time you see one of our vet nurses doing the chicken dance, remember it’s all for the dog!
The last word on what this Wahroonga vet clinic will do to make your dog’s visit a happy one
We really do pride ourselves on working with each individual dog and pet parent to make visiting us enjoyable. We try to cement a relationship that starts in the first few months with puppy pre-school which continues right the way through your pet’s lifetime.
We are always looking for new ideas on how we can improve the visits of not only nervous dogs, but any pet that comes to see us.
Helping your pet enjoy the vet makes it less stressful for everyone, including you. So if you have any suggestions, please feel free to share them.
Next blog, we’ll take a look at what Fox Valley Animal Hospital does to look after the needs of our feline friends. Improving your cat’s visits with us also sees some rather fun and interesting techniques employed.