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So Bender went to the vet today for some shots. He is 16 weeks old and 37.5 lbs. He is the goofiest, most loving puppy ever. He is also teething (just lost his first tooth on Monday ^_^) so he has been extra "chewy" with his front teeth.

Anyways, we've been to this vet 3 separate times. Had 3 separate vets and 3 separate techs. I used to work at this vet 3 years ago as well. Bender has been totally fine and happy about this place. He has always been weird about his left ear and hollers when you stick something down into it, but so far he doesn't have any infections. Well, so the vet tech came in and took his temp, he did fine. She checked his ears with q-tips, he did fine (did the little holler once and was fine). She checked his mouth and body, and he was fine. Then gave him some Panacur.

The vet then came in and went to his ears. I said "Be gentle with that left ear, he can be over dramatic." After I said that, she REALLY went to town bending just that one ear and looking deep in it, stuck a q tip in his ear and he freaked out. His other ear, she just poked the q-tip in and he was fine. Then she went to check his mouth and he let out a growl. To me, it sounded just like the sound he makes every single time we play. Anytime we play tug, anytime I am brushing him and he wants to bite the brush, and any time he is wrestling with another puppy. She then says "we need to muzzle him" and she muzzled him and he just sat there looking at me, seeming very confused. She gave him his shots and then proceeded to tell me my dog is aggressive and will most likely have to be muzzled every time he comes in???? She said "German shepherds are weird like that, they typically have to be muzzled."

I understand not wanting to take a chance, but he is seriously just a goofy puppy. I think she freaked him out with the ear thing, and he has been shaking his head on that one side since we've been home and walking lopsided, but I think calling him aggressive is a little much? When I worked there and we had to muzzle dogs, usually after the muzzle was on they were still thrashing around and trying to kill everyone. He just sat there looking at me across the room. I am worried that if he gets muzzled when he is there every time, he will develop a negative association with that place. After that vet left, another one came in (my friend) and proceeded to play with him on the exam table and gently wrestle with his head. He was fine.

Am I being overly sensitive? Or should I try not to have her be our vet? There are like 5 vets in this facility.
 

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Mine is full grown and has never been muzzled by the vet's choice. I asked them to muzzle her one time, because she was very sick and I didn't know how she would react. She did fine. I think that I would ask to see a different vet. Did they put it in his records that he needs to be muzzled?
 

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I would be finding a new vet if I were you, sounds like the vet is very insensitive and incompetent when it comes to knowing how to handle or have knowledge of GSD's
 

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i agree, change vets..no vet should say that about any breed. Way to stereo type. She should know better, the pup is 4 months old and probably was just a little uncomfortable but by no means aggressive. I would try to go to a different vet that will be more regular instead of having to see a different vet each time. Then no one really knows your dog as well.
 

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Ok...the dog growls at someone and just because its 4 months old you expect the vet to put her body at risk? Sure...find another vet if you want, but I wouldn't take a chance with a growling dog either. The dog probably can't do that much damage...but any damage to the vet's hand probably puts her at risk for not being able to do her job. Who knows...maybe its a tiny scratch, maybe its a little blood, or maybe the tooth nicks a nerve of some sort and the vet can't move her thumb for a week?

There is a world of difference between YOUR dog growling while playing with YOU. And YOUR dog growling at ANOTHER person. At my club...no dog is allowed to growl, no matter what age. My dog can growl while I'm playing tug with him, but if he even lets out a little one towards another dog or human, he will get corrected.

This vet is incompetent? Seriously?!?!? Because she wants to muzzle a GSD? You realize that vet probably sees a bunch of unruly, untrained, aggressive dogs on a daily basis. If putting a muzzle on is what the vet needs to do her job...let her do it. It doesn't hurt a dog any to have a muzzle on.

I love people making judgement about a vet and a puppy's intentions over a 4 paragraph post.
 

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I have much more of a problem with the Q-tip than the muzzling.
 

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The vet is incompetent for saying that "German Shepherds are weird like that, they typically have to be muzzled"... which is untrue if she is seeing a bunch of GSD's that are aggressive than unfortunately she is obviously going to have a negative bias against them, but to imply that they are all like that and need to be muzzled is ridiculous... Diesel never once growled at anyone including the vets (which she loved) and Penny never has either, and Im sure a lot of other people will agree
 

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Umm, Martemchick, you may have missed it but I stated in my first post:
"I understand not wanting to take a chance"

I used to work at this exact vet, and nobody else that I worked with would have muzzled a dog for that. We muzzled dogs who were snapping, trying to bite, etc. The vet just graduated and has only been working there a handful of months. I just started seeing her around October-ish because I work at the building next door, so I am friends with all the employees there. I am facebook friends with the other vets. I also take my dog to work with me every shift and all the other vets (since they are my friends) see him regularly and all know what's going on with him. I was more mad at her generalizing my dog as an aggressive dog and saying he's just like every other german shepherd. I will admit, when I worked there it was almost guaranteed that the shepherds would be the most freaked out ones, but we didn't jump the gun and muzzle them. We just had to be very calm and relaxing to them and it helped a lot.
I am also bothered by the vet's aggressive ear exam, I don't understand that.

Also, she spent about 5 minutes telling me my desire to get him neutered at 2 was incorrect and that 1.) My dog will probably get cancer, 2.) My dog has a high likelihood of scaling the fence and escaping to impregnate a bitch and then will get hit by a car (she really said this..), and 3.) He will pee all over the house when he begins to mark. I just sat there saying "Thank you, but I will wait till he is two" and after a few times of saying that, she said okay, your choice and that I was ready to check out. I was really annoyed by the whole time spent with her. The techs were great as always. My friend was one of the techs and she even said "Steph doesn't neuter her dogs at 3 months, she does it when they are older and they never get out."

IDK I guess I am just venting now.
 

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The vet is incompetent for saying that "German Shepherds are weird like that, they typically have to be muzzled"... which is untrue if she is seeing a bunch of GSD's that are aggressive than unfortunately she is obviously going to have a negative bias against them, but to imply that they are all like that and need to be muzzled is ridiculous... Diesel never once growled at anyone including the vets (which she loved) and Penny never has either, and Im sure a lot of other people will agree
So your TWO...against the dozens or hundreds that the vet has probably seen?

My boy never needs a muzzle...but I've been told that on Monday when I go to get his hips OFA'd they WILL put a muzzle on him because they do it without anesthesia and the dog ends up on his back (many don't like that).

It's really not surprising...I took my boy to our vet this year and after his physical the vet was shocked that he was still intact. He was amazed at how well-behaved and calm he was for an intact GSD. All that told me was that the vet sees crazy, aggressive, intact male GSDs more than he sees well trained dogs. I don't call him incompetent because he feels that way...its just based on his experience with the breed. And there is no reason for a vet to think any of our animals are against the status quo of what they've seen through their career.

Many German Shepherds do not like getting touched by strangers...be it because of the way they were raised (not socialized to it) or because of their personality.
 

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So I'm a little curious. You know- context is everything in these kinds of stories.

You: "Be gentle with that left ear, he can be over dramatic."
Vet: <immediately starts jabbing around/in that ear without saying anything>

Really? Did the vet say anything like, "Hmmm- do you think he might have an infection or something down in there? Maybe he has something in there that is bothering him. Let's see if we can take a look..." <starts prodding>

To me, that is sooooooooo much different than the vet silently just poking around for no good reason after you say to be careful.
 

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Also, she spent about 5 minutes telling me my desire to get him neutered at 2 was incorrect and that 1.) My dog will probably get cancer, 2.) My dog has a high likelihood of scaling the fence and escaping to impregnate a bitch and then will get hit by a car (she really said this..), and 3.) He will pee all over the house when he begins to mark. I just sat there saying "Thank you, but I will wait till he is two" and after a few times of saying that, she said okay, your choice and that I was ready to check out. I was really annoyed by the whole time spent with her. The techs were great as always. My friend was one of the techs and she even said "Steph doesn't neuter her dogs at 3 months, she does it when they are older and they never get out."

IDK I guess I am just venting now.
Most vets will push neutering/spaying. Most of their clients aren't responsible enough for intact ownership so they push it. It's also a crazy profit maker for them. It's probably the equivalent of an appendectomy for humans. The simplest surgery they can do, and they charge as much as they can for it.
 

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Yeah, my older shepherd he LOVES LOVES LOVES the vet because that's where he was raised since I took him with every day. He only growled once and that was after being stuck in the neck 5 times while being cornered into the wall, cause nobody could find a good vein lol and immediately after he growled he licked her in the face.
 

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Wildo, I wish I could say she said something like that. She gave a weird face (kind of resembled a "hmmm let's check it out" face) and then grabbed the long q-tip, reached her non dominant hand around his neck/body and back around to the base of his ear, then with her other hand she was pulling the ear apart to separate it and get the hair outta the way (he's a coatie so he has ear floofies) and while this was happening he was trying to wiggle outta her grasp and was doing the freaked out whine that german shepherds do, and then she twirled the q-tip back and went deep into his ear and spun it for a couple seconds, and pulled it out. The whole time he was freaked out.

Then she said his ears look very clean, asked how often I clean them, and said she doesn't know why his left ear is so sensitive. Then went on to his mouth and he was kinda ticked off ever since the ear exam apparently because that's when he let out a growl. When I say growl though, it wasn't the type of "I am going to bite you" growl, it was the kind they make when their mouth is open and they are inviting play with another puppy. It kinda sounded like a howl mixed with a growl, mixed with a dying cat sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Carmspack, before I quit working there, I stocked up on meds in case I ever needed them. And I usually just have to say "Hey can I pick up some _______" and they let me have it :) Point of me saying all that, I have Remicin and I gave him a prophylactic dose of it as soon as we got home :)
 

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Yeah, idk, he has always been so weird about that one ear. They ran tests and everything, all is clear. But I will treat it for a week anyways.
I think I will just have my normal vets look at him.
 

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This vet is incompetent? Seriously?!?!? Because she wants to muzzle a GSD? You realize that vet probably sees a bunch of unruly, untrained, aggressive dogs on a daily basis. If putting a muzzle on is what the vet needs to do her job...let her do it. It doesn't hurt a dog any to have a muzzle on.

I love people making judgement about a vet and a puppy's intentions over a 4 paragraph post.

There really is nothing wrong with muzzling the dog but for the vet to generalize GSD's is an issue..She gave him his shots and then proceeded to tell me my dog is aggressive and will most likely have to be muzzled every time he comes in???? She said "German shepherds are weird like that, they typically have to be muzzled."
 
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