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Ever since Deja injured her foot (pierced by a piece of wood) a few years ago, she is impossible to be handled by vet or the techs (shots are OK). No matter what we have tried; treats, stern commands et,c she won't budge and struggles. She is not aggressive and has never bitten but she is now muzzle trained. She doesn't seem to be afraid; just won't cooperate. It is an excellent vet and they will only do things gently with a lot of cooing and treats. I have told them that baby talk and cooing just riles her up and to "just do it". But they are too hesitant. I had my breeder put in a chip because they couldn't on a pup in the past. The breeder is no-nonsense and just does it, telling the pup, "Sorry, it's a big one" and it's done and life goes on.
So at the vet yesterday I had hoped to get a blood sample for titering. It didn't work and I went home. I didn't want to ruin my reputation as trainer or else I had just been firm with her. They suggested "to come in on a regular bases so they could just love her and teach her that the vets/techs are ok and gradually get her used to being held." But that may work for some dogs but Deja is too smart to fall for that when treatment is needed. I know they mean well and this may work for Pugs and Retrievers but not for her. I wish there was a chute, like they have for cattle :)grin2:) for this.
Any ideas?
 

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Could you hold her? I work in a vets and the restraint for blood collection isn't very hard and I'm sure you could do it. where i work we always start of being very supportive the cooing etc.. , but when a dog isn't cooperating we get as stern as we need and have the "just do it fast and get it over with" type mentality. we will hold the weight of the dog up if we need to if they just shut down and lay there. Some techs aren't as strong or comfortable to really tell a large GSD off like she probably needs.

Only other option i would think, if they really can't get the blood, or won't let you hold her in the position would be sedation :/ which I'm sure you dont want and would be a last resort option.

If people come in that are clearly good trainers and owners, with a large dog like a GSD,rottie etc.. we sometimes let the owner come to the back (or just do it in the room) (especially if it is a super dog or human aggressive dog) because they know how to keep them under control more than the techs and if they are clearly not going to have a problem thinking we are abusing the dog if they yelp of shut down, (we get some of those "furmommys" that think we are killing the dog if it squrms or yelps, ugh)
 

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Suzy, I could have held her but they were not very comfortable when I offered that. I agree with you though. Next time I'l be more insistent.
 

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I hold Newlie's head when necessary which is mostly with other medical visits not at his vet's office. That way, they won't say "He has to have a muzzle." This is not because he is doing anything to scare them, he is just big and a German Shepherd, that is enough for a lot of people.
 

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My boy is awesome with people--even with Halloween costumes, etc. He is muzzled every visit at the vet, though.

He does not like being touched/handled for examination. When he was at the vet 8:00 to 5:00 for a whole week when he chunked down a lamb shank and they were keeping an eye on him, the vet assistants would take him out of his cage and play with him, no problem. We walk into the vet office, no problem. He's happy to see the vet--no problem.

When he was a puppy, I would touch his privates, gently pull his tail, touch his ears, etc., which I have done with all my dogs. But, Simon has boundaries about examination. I don't want any trouble and I don't want anyone scared by him--or worse.

He is muzzle trained and it's routine. It's my muzzle and I put it on after the vet comes in and says hi to Simon before we start any procedure. I remove it right afterwards. Simon knows he's not in trouble and he is expecting it. So safety and calmness all around. I had read that some GSD don't like being handled--personal space and all.
 

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If you really just want to get the job done, use a slip lead on the dog, run the lead through the door crack, or attach to something solid (not a person). Cover the dog's eyes, and push him against the wall with your body. A vet tech pushes the middle of the dog's body against the wall, but the owner is by the head. Ideally, his head should be in a corner of the room, as well. The head should not be moving much because of the secured lead. Dog should be muzzled. Get the blood from the back leg if needed. Done and out.

If your vet OKs it, and you can do it, the owner can do things like blood draws or injections of sedation under vet supervision. Some vets will not OK this. Depends on the vet.

I've found I'm never judged by the vet as long as I am super upfront and honest about the dog. All but one of my dogs are easy to handle. The one that isn't- I am completely honest about it and take steps to keep the staff safe. It is what it is... there are ways to deal with it. This dog is 90 lbs and we've used the technique above and it worked. Done and out...
 

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If you really just want to get the job done, use a slip lead on the dog, run the lead through the door crack, or attach to something solid (not a person). Cover the dog's eyes, and push him against the wall with your body. A vet tech pushes the middle of the dog's body against the wall, but the owner is by the head. Ideally, his head should be in a corner of the room, as well. The head should not be moving much because of the secured lead. Dog should be muzzled. Get the blood from the back leg if needed. Done and out.

If your vet OKs it, and you can do it, the owner can do things like blood draws or injections of sedation under vet supervision. Some vets will not OK this. Depends on the vet.

I've found I'm never judged by the vet as long as I am super upfront and honest about the dog. All but one of my dogs are easy to handle. The one that isn't- I am completely honest about it and take steps to keep the staff safe. It is what it is... there are ways to deal with it. This dog is 90 lbs and we've used the technique above and it worked. Done and out...
I am going to use this idea. Deja is muzzle trained. I just have to convince the staff that 'gentle and careful' won't work for her in this setting. Thanks a bunch!
 

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I've never had a problem with my vets letting me restrain my dogs when they're being examined. They will even let me position them, for example, when one of them had a cut foot, and they needed her to lie on her side to examine it. The attitude seems to be, 'better the owner gets bit than us, if the dog's going to get nasty!'

And if I think a muzzle is needed, I'll let them know. My male GSD hated having his nails done, and he wasn't great about the kennel cough vaccine that they used to squirt into the nose, either!

He was really good with everything else. He got bitten by another dog, and the vet was flushing the wound out, with him just needing minimal restraint from the vet tech.

This was one time I was a little too shook up myself to assist. Nothing gets the adrenaline going like a dog fight... :eek:
 

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I am going to use this idea. Deja is muzzle trained. I just have to convince the staff that 'gentle and careful' won't work for her in this setting. Thanks a bunch!
We start as low stress as possible at my clinic - there are some dogs that can stand still with the owner petting its head and I can get blood from a rear leg, but if you restrain the dog at all it completely loses it. As long as the dog does not try to sit, this is fine. This is an exception, though. Most dogs (98%) need some form of restraint in order to accomplish anything treatment-wise. 5-10 seconds feels like forever to hold still if a needle is in!

We love owners who are realistic and use a basket muzzle as needed. We don't hold grudges, and always use whatever method is least traumatic to our patient...but no one likes getting bit.

Your dog honestly is one that, if healthy otherwise, we would just sedate. Come in, hang onto your dogs head, we pop an injection in and wait. Once puppy is asleep, we do a full exam, draw blood, x-rays, whatever. Give dog a reversal drug = everyone happy and everything done no hassle.

You could even just pop a pill into a treat before you go to the office. Trazadone is one we rec to owners of dogs who just don't like their procedures. Talk to your vet about just sedating when you go in. Research the drugs - acepromazine is an effective sedative, but there is some evidence that it does not do much for the dog mentally, and can make the aggression worse.

Best of luck!
 

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My late girl was seriously ill when she was two. After that, she wouldn't fall for the treats, soft praise etc because she knew it would be followed by some form of treatment.. She was muzzle trained although I think with the younger techs they just saw a GSD in a muzzle and were instantly more nervous because of it.
I always held her and put her in the position the Vet wanted. She was definitely better with those that were matter of fact and just got on with it instead of trying to be her best friend first. I also had a halti under her basket muzzle so it was easier to restrain her head, probably the same effect as a slip collar.
Regards your reputation as a trainer, she was the only girl I have owned that has hated the vets. All of them were bought up the same way, ironically one of them was a lot more sickly and was fine at the vets.
As for coming into the vets on a regular basis, my late girl would have been 'how stupid do you think I am ".
 

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I will have a talk with the vet tomorrow to see what we can best do (the vet wasn't present yesterday). My preference is a Valium tablet before going in but the techs were not authorized to do that. I used that before my oldies needed to be PTS at home so they wouldn't have to face the vet in their last hour.
 

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So often women are taught from babyhood to be polite, and in being polite to ask or to hook questions into our statements. But when we ask, it is natural for the other party to find a reason to say "no" or to choose to do it their way. I am not sure if I am being clear about this.

Sometimes it is better to tell them what you are going to do, rather than ask them if you could, should, whatever. Some places have a policy about restraining the dogs themselves because I guess if you get bit by your dog, while they are doing a procedure on them, you could sue them.
 
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So often women are taught from babyhood to be polite, and in being polite to ask or to hook questions into our statements. But when we ask, it is natural for the other party to find a reason to say "no" or to choose to do it their way. I am not sure if I am being clear about this.

Sometimes it is better to tell them what you are going to do, rather than ask them if you could, should, whatever. Some places have a policy about restraining the dogs themselves because I guess if you get bit by your dog, while they are doing a procedure on them, you could sue them.
I did tell them the sweet-talk wasn't going to change Deja's mind. So it will be the choice of giving her sedatives or hold her forcibly. I don't like both. If I discover a new trick it will only work once.
 

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My vet is leery of Varik. He has a asst. help, but I'm the primary holder. The vet for some reason wants to put him up on the examining table, which Varik hates. I let it slide when we were going about his AG issues, but Varik is like a bucking bronco when he's up there. The poor asst. ends up with a dog almost on top of his head sometime.

I've finally told them flatly, eh we are going to work with him on the ground. I know it's uncomfortable for the humans, but oh well. Varik has had to wear a muzzle at the vet's and only at the vet's since before he was a year old, because he growled when the vet tried to ... pick him up to put him on the table to examine his injured leg.

You're paying them to treat your dog ... you just need to be the one directing how it's examined. Vets don't always make the right call .. particularly when anxious/nervous themselves.
 

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Patton is usually treated right on the floor, which can be awkward, especially since he likes to try squeeze into the corner. Better that than dealing with him up on the table. He was fine up there as a youngster but as big as he is now, he doesn't want to be lifted onto a slippery table. Often my hubby and I both come and Patton will stick his face into my sweeties chest while they work. We've done that with all our dogs. Typically we don't like the "keep the owner in the waiting room" vets, at least not for routine work. Going in regularly just to check weight or a cookie doesn't make my dogs any less nervous about getting the shot up the nose, or being left behind and waking up groggy in a crate. My vet and at least one tech have or currently own GSDs and they have many as clients. They are pretty good with understanding them.

Both of my dogs have had a couple surgeries and I suspect they drug them up before lifting them. Much easier on everyone involved.
 

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wolfy dog can you have them prepare everything beforehand so you can just walk into the room and get it done? No waiting room or check in? It may help with setting a no nonsense approach mindset. And at least cut the stress time for her.

I hope it goes better for both of you.
 

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wolfy dog can you have them prepare everything beforehand so you can just walk into the room and get it done? No waiting room or check in? It may help with setting a no nonsense approach mindset. And at least cut the stress time for her.

I hope it goes better for both of you.
Yes, that is a good idea, along with a eye cap and holding her in a corner. I prefer the non-medicated route. I am also going to ask if they can draw blood while she is in the car.
One day she needed to be seen for a post-op check up. We were put in a room with a rug, couch and a tissue box. You know what that is for.... And so did she. She hesitated to go into that room. I don't think that has helped either.
 

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Our clinic doesn't make appointments and has a small waiting room. I check in and go behind the clinic where there are shade trees and that's where we wait. One of the vet techs comes to get us when it's time for my appointment.

They have now put in pocket doors on the exam room (they only have one room at the moment). Varik knows how to use his nose to open the door so he can go visit the receptionist. He's fine with everything, just not when it's time for the vet to touch him. I think you can minimize a lot by you being the one in charge, not the vet. Let him do what he's good at (the clinical side) and you handle the behavioral side.
 

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Sensitive subject. As a tech, in all my practices, owners are not allowed to restrain their own pets. Only exception is LE K9. Why? Insurance and liability. Many o many a practice has been sued and lost when the pet bit the owner. It's our society and it sucks, especially for the good and capable owners.

Muzzle training is good. But you also need to be more forceful. TELL don't ask how he needs to be handled. If the tech or Dr are hesitant or scared, ask for different ones.

As a tech I have dealt with plenty of jerk GSD. They are not known for being cooperative in the vets office. I just go in and get stuff done. Less is more.

When you say you dog doesn't cooperate, can you explain better? Is he is a bucking bronco? You say no snapping or biting, but is he growling, getting very still? Challenging the staff?

I love GSD, I was always the one called to help with them. But please remember that I( as a tech) have had more bites from a dog right after being told (oh he's friendly), so yeah. I don't trust most owners.
 

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Sensitive subject. As a tech, in all my practices, owners are not allowed to restrain their own pets. Only exception is LE K9. Why? Insurance and liability. Many o many a practice has been sued and lost when the pet bit the owner. It's our society and it sucks, especially for the good and capable owners.

Muzzle training is good. But you also need to be more forceful. TELL don't ask how he needs to be handled. If the tech or Dr are hesitant or scared, ask for different ones.

As a tech I have dealt with plenty of jerk GSD. They are not known for being cooperative in the vets office. I just go in and get stuff done. Less is more.

When you say you dog doesn't cooperate, can you explain better? Is he is a bucking bronco? You say no snapping or biting, but is he growling, getting very still? Challenging the staff?

I love GSD, I was always the one called to help with them. But please remember that I( as a tech) have had more bites from a dog right after being told (oh he's friendly), so yeah. I don't trust most owners.
Bronco style (great term!). Never growling, biting, baring teeth or being still. Oh and I forgot to mention that next time she wil have the prong on.
 
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