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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all

Our girl is just over 1 year old. She gets very nervous / anxious at the vet, she is freaked out and won't let the vet touch her, she keeps moving, and keeps kind of nipping or trying to (moves her head toward the vet's hands).

I really want her to be comfortable, so the next time i go the vet will be able to do a physical examination, shots, trim nails.

What can any of you recommend?

Thanks
 

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Start just "stopping by" make it happy and rewarding and quick. Build up to more time. I your next visit is exam, shots & nail trim you aren't going to reinforce this as a positive experience.
Lots of treats, lots of fun lots of focus and reward and KEEP IT QUICK and do something cool (in the dogs mind) afterward.

Do NOT reassure your dog or coo at your dog. Get your vet & staff to stop baby talking your dog, too. It's really hard to get he humans to do this but it is important.

Good luck!
 

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Thanks i will give that all a shot.

This also seems a little difficult as she is very anxious around other dogs, pulls toward, hackles raised etc, when seeing them. I am currently seeing a behaviorist to get all this sorted, but i guess there is no other way around this, apart from giving a call to the vet before going there to make sure there are no dogs around ?
 

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At one of my two vets, I take my youngest with me when I'm picking up med refills (e.g., heartworm preventatives), just to visit with the vet's front office staff and vet techs. The staff always give a my dog a treat (usually they give something very high value, like a Greenie). I'm convinced my little one thinks of that place as the "good treat place." These visits have two purposes. The first is that my shy little rescue is out and seeing the world and experiencing as a friendly, fun place (good socialization); the second is we are conditioning her to believe good stuff happens at the vet's office.

At my other vet, I take them occasionally for play care sessions (doggie day care play groups). My dogs love play care, and they get very excited to go to this vet. We try to time vet visits with play care so that they get to do something fun there that day too.

If you take the dog to visit occasionally and get a treat from the staff, with no exams or stressful stuff, it will be a place the dog likes and feels comfortable in. Tell the staff why you are doing it, and they'll pull out the "good" treats--they will almost certainly appreciate that you are doing this and try to help.
 

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Have you tried treats? Something she can't resist? If the vet is willing, have them give them to her. It worked with one of mine when meeting the "back up" vet for the first time. It helped that this "back up" vet is a GSDs owner and very confident.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The little one loves chicken necks, don't really want to walk in with a bag of those, what is high value that is dry?

I will start doing this, hopefully we don't encounter another dog!
 

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when my dog was a pup i use to visit the Vet
3 or 4 times a week (no charge) for treats, pets
and mock exams. if i say "let's go to the Vet"
my dog will grab his leash and wait for me at the front
door. try some short visits. ask the Vet or the staff
to treat your dog, pet her (if they can). on some visits
just sit in the waiting area and treat your dog and praise her.
i would follow these steps a lot. include somethings that you
think will help with the office visits.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks will do, any ideas on the whole thing on if a dog turns up, it could turn the desensitizing to the vet clinic into a bad experience, or should i hold off until the dog issues are sorted?
 

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The little one loves chicken necks, don't really want to walk in with a bag of those, what is high value that is dry?

I will start doing this, hopefully we don't encounter another dog!
Take chicken necks then. Most people I've dealt with at the vet are very helpful and on top of that they deal with some pretty nasty stuff sometimes (with latex gloves of course;) ) I would give them heads up about your appointment and what it is you would like to do. You can also explain that you would like to avoid other dogs at this time and see what they say. Doesn't hurt to ask.
 

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Thanks i will give that all a shot.

This also seems a little difficult as she is very anxious around other dogs, pulls toward, hackles raised etc, when seeing them. I am currently seeing a behaviorist to get all this sorted, but i guess there is no other way around this, apart from giving a call to the vet before going there to make sure there are no dogs around ?
Maybe you should talk to the behaviorist on rather to wait or not.
 

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This also seems a little difficult as she is very anxious around other dogs, pulls toward, hackles raised etc, when seeing them. I am currently seeing a behaviorist to get all this sorted, but i guess there is no other way around this, apart from giving a call to the vet before going there to make sure there are no dogs around ?
The vet office should have more than one entrance. My golden retriever is somewhat dog reactive, I just don't feel comfortable having her in the waiting area. I leave her in the car until they're ready for her, then take her in a side door close to the examing room. Check with your vet about this option for you.

If this isn't possible, have one of the techs handle your dog inside the office ... this might seem weird, but I've noticed in my case that can make a huge difference in my dog's behavior.
 

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Jo, are you doing anything for our dogs reactivity?
Avoidance mostly :) She's old, 12 years now. Mostly it's towards small dogs, she does just fine wtih large dogs, and she's doing much better now in her senior years. But she's definitely more reactive when on lead, which she has to be at the vet's office and it's such a confined space ... sometimes avoidance works best :)
 

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Are you taking her regularly to dog classes? Just plan on going once a week to dog class for a year. She has some growing up to do. At dog classes (not doggy free-for-all), she will see other dogs, and people. This is NOT a time for you to let your dog sniff other dogs, play with other dogs, etc. What you want to accomplish is to have your dog in the vacinity of other dogs, but able to comply with your commands, and looking at you for what comes next.

At classes, our instructor comes up every day and says high and shakes our hand. Then by the next class or two, she is asking to pet the dog. At later classes other people come up and say "hi." This is not a once over, but as you keep going to classes, you should be going over the sit for exam, stand for exam, or CGC exercise where they groom the dog on the back and check the paws and ears.

Believe it or not, this will make dealing with the vet easier.

I also go to the vet just to have the pup get on the scale and do a weigh in. If possible, I have the vet techs offer treats. But they have jobs too, and I don't expect the vet to pet my dog when I am not there for anything.
 

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Avoidance mostly :) Mostly it's towards small dogs, she does just fine wtih large dogs
Is this common amongst GSDs? I've noticed the number of threads & one of mine makes puffy noises ??? at a couple of fenced small dogs and 2 houses later she walks past 2 labs and ignores them.
 

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Is this common amongst GSDs? I've noticed the number of threads & one of mine makes puffy noises ??? at a couple of fenced small dogs and 2 houses later she walks past 2 labs and ignores them.
My GSD is fine with other dogs, so far ... he's only 5 months old. It's my giolden retriever that is dog reactive. But I know a lot of it is me, like I said in my earlier post. She was attacked, badly, when she was very young, and she fought back like a champion ... scared me so bad, I don't think either one of us have ever really gotten over it.

I don't think I'll have the same issue wtih my GSD, but I'm being very careful of his expriences with other dogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
How would you introduce a reactive dog to another dog for the first time, i have a friend that wants to meet up, but i am a bit nervous
 
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