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J is fear aggressive/reactive. He's pretty sick and is going to the vet in the morning if he doesn't hold food down tonight.

He hates the vet, he is terrified of that place and going in for his shots (while he's healthy and feeling good) includes him being half-carried, muzzled, and then being restrained for his shots, and/or having a blanket over his head so he doesn't see the scary vet touching him.

Tomorrow, at the very least I'm expecting them to pull blood, put him on fluids, palpitate his abdomen and possibly get xrays if they think he has a blockage too.

One concern is that I don't have a muzzle that fits him and allows him to pant or open his mouth. Their muzzles are the nylon ones that hold their mouth shut. I'm afraid of him getting so worked up he will have to vomit - then what?.. I really don't know what to do at this point, I can't find a pet shop that sells a basket muzzle in his size.


I will, of course, talk to my vet about this first. But is it possible they can just knock him out FIRST and then do everything they need to and send him home? My biggest worry is them taking him to the back without me to work on him - awake. I'm about to have a panic attack thinking about it. I don't have a relationship with my vet or even know them well at all, I just switched to them not long ago. I DO NOT want him going anywhere out of my sight while he is conscious. I don't trust the humans involved to handle him kindly if he reacts bad, and I know there are other animals - which he also doesn't like.


I did not ask for or make him this way, but he is what he is and that's not what I'm trying to discuss. I just need some advice. I have never had to deal with this particular situation with him or a dog like him and I'm afraid if I let them drag him out of my sight and handle him as they will, while he's sick and hurting especially, it's going to scar him and ruin all of the work me and him have done to get to the point we're at.

Forgive me if I'm rambling, I literally haven't slept for days.
 

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Depending on the appt time, you could elect for an early morning overnight delivery for a basket muzzle. Big $$ for that option.

Another option, call and speak with the vet, explain the situation. They may offer a sedative you can give before arriving. The drawback to that is it may not relax him enough and leave him feeling strange and that could increase the fear. My vet has offered this option if the need ever arose.

When you arrive, regardless if he is sedated or muzzled, before you even get out of the car, call the reception - verify the waiting area is clear. Set this up with reception today so you don't have to deal with long explanations in the morning.

With a possible blockage involved, they may not want to sedate or knock him out because the drugs do slow down the insides, just be aware of that.
 

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J is fear aggressive/reactive. He's pretty sick and is going to the vet in the morning if he doesn't hold food down tonight.

He hates the vet, he is terrified of that place and going in for his shots (while he's healthy and feeling good) includes him being half-carried, muzzled, and then being restrained for his shots, and/or having a blanket over his head so he doesn't see the scary vet touching him.

Tomorrow, at the very least I'm expecting them to pull blood, put him on fluids, palpitate his abdomen and possibly get xrays if they think he has a blockage too.

One concern is that I don't have a muzzle that fits him and allows him to pant or open his mouth. Their muzzles are the nylon ones that hold their mouth shut. I'm afraid of him getting so worked up he will have to vomit - then what?.. I really don't know what to do at this point, I can't find a pet shop that sells a basket muzzle in his size.


I will, of course, talk to my vet about this first. But is it possible they can just knock him out FIRST and then do everything they need to and send him home? My biggest worry is them taking him to the back without me to work on him - awake. I'm about to have a panic attack thinking about it. I don't have a relationship with my vet or even know them well at all, I just switched to them not long ago. I DO NOT want him going anywhere out of my sight while he is conscious. I don't trust the humans involved to handle him kindly if he reacts bad, and I know there are other animals - which he also doesn't like.


I did not ask for or make him this way, but he is what he is and that's not what I'm trying to discuss. I just need some advice. I have never had to deal with this particular situation with him or a dog like him and I'm afraid if I let them drag him out of my sight and handle him as they will, while he's sick and hurting especially, it's going to scar him and ruin all of the work me and him have done to get to the point we're at.

Forgive me if I'm rambling, I literally haven't slept for days.
Why dont you let the vets do what they're trained to do? It might surprise you that he might do better AWAY from you. I had an obstructed patient just the other day, ate a rock. CHARGED the technician in the room. Owner had to put the muzzle on for us. Dog was a nightmare. In the back we were able to handle the dog just fine.

I muzzle nauseous dogs all the time for xrays. We keep a good eye on them, we know what they look like when they're about to vomit, we can pull that muzzle off in a second.

You can not legally be back there when they do xrays.

Sedation is a bad idea. If the dog is obstructed many sedatives and pain medications slow down the gi tract. You also dont want that if its diarrhea/vomiting caused by any kind of gi upset. You want to clear everything out not have it blocked inside.

Trust these professionals to do what theyve been doing for years. Its not the first nor the last aggressive dog theyve handled, TRUST ME

Also trust me that we dont do this job for the money. We do it because we love and want to help animals. No one is going to be unkind to your dog because he's aggressive
Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I understand they have handled aggressive dogs. I have too. Jaeger is a dog who would have been put down a long time ago in the average home, or with someone who wasn't extremely committed to keeping him alive. He's not the average dog with aggression problems, he will have a full on panic episode just being rushed by a dog - he reacts with aggression if he cannot get away. And he feels the same about people. I do not see it as possible to get an xray of his abdomen without several people forcing him down if he is conscious. He's not one of those dogs feeding off of my emotions, he does not do better away from me.

If I was confident in them just handling him, I'd be fine. I can't help but remember the video recently of a vets' staff slamming a small dog against a wall because it was biting, and having the staff wrangle it for fifteen minutes. And then having the vet excuse it. Just because someone works in an industry that helps animals doesn't mean there aren't mean people.

I'm not worried about a vet or tech not knowing when a dog is about to vomit, I'm worried about them taking off and forcing the muzzle back on.

If I knew any of them, I'd feel a little better. But I don't. I don't trust people just because they went to school, I just wish I had a friend in the office who could keep an eye on him for me.
 

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You could always go to the vet and visit with them and get to know them without your dog. It's not bad to check out a facility before deciding whether or not you want your dog there. You can ask to speak to the vet that will be seeing your dog and explain the situation. I would also opt for a basket muzzle even if they are expensive if you're nervous about the situation. I've never dealt with a fear aggressive dog that's afraid of the vet but I would definitely do the above. Also Anubis_Star seems like a very knowledgeable vet tech and I would take his/her advice :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've been there before, nice clean place. But is it extremely loud and I hate how the waiting room is set up (even though we just walk right through, they do not ask others to move away from the door or give us a clear passage when I did ask for it).

I'm not trying to come off snappy. As I said I've been up with him 24/7 monitoring any changes, how much he's eating and losing, the color and different consistency of the poops, his pee color and amount, and on and on and I'm about to explode because I seem to be the only one around taking it as seriously as I am.
 

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Is there a way you can ask for assistance in getting your dog into a quieter space? I know it may be a lot to ask for but dogs of all kinds need vetting. Can you during your waiting time just check in without your dog (leave your dog in it's kennel or car while checking in) then come back outside and just walk around the vet office with your dog until it's time for you to go in? Maybe have the receptionist call you on your cell and so you can just go straight into the room?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yeah, we'll set something up so I can wait in the car with him until they have the room ready for him to go right through the waiting area.

And I do know it's exasperating to vets and the staff when an owner asks for all kinds of things, it's another day at work for them, they handle countless animals, they aren't attached to him, but I know him very well and can't help but be so stressed that I don't know what to do with myself already.
 

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Just breathe and not focus on all the things that COULD go wrong. If you're stressed out that could encourage his fear even more (I do understand it's genetics but we don't want to spur him on by being tense). If I'm really stressed out I focus on my breathing, counting four seconds in and four seconds out a couple time and try to blank my mind and then get back at the task at hand with a calm collected head. Maybe doing things that help you calm down while you're in the car waiting might help keep yourself calm.
 

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Thank you, really.

I will, of course, let them do anything they need to. I'd rather traumatize him for a day than lose him. I just need to convince myself of that and have a good cry. As I said, I didn't ask to get a dog with his baggage, but it happened and it makes everything 10X as hard as it should be. I worry a lot about what I'm going to do when his time comes, what if it's an emergency like my last dog, and he has to be rushed to a vet with no preparation? Then he's going to be terrified in his last moments. Things that you never think about when you have a normal dog. The last two dogs I lost were so unexpected and traumatic -I worry about it all the time with him.
 

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I can understand and the fact that you do everything you can to make him as prepared and comfortable with his issues is amazing. I believe it can probably get a little (a lot) stressful at times but you're doing an amazing things by sticking with your dog and being so caring and loving. Thank you for doing so and I'm sure Jaeger appreciates all that you do for him.
 

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I'm sorry you are so stressed about his vet visit :-(, that alone breaks my heart.
Even as a vet tech myself I worry about 2 of my dogs being handled without me there bc they are very nervous with strangers.

It's natural for you to be stressed, but you aren't doing yourself or your baby any good by worrying about the what-ifs. I know it's hard, believe me, but the more stressed you are the more stressed he will be.
It's hard when you aren't comfortable yet with your veterinarian or his/her staff.

I agree with a lot of these posts, so much good advice!!

My best advice is to try to get a very early appointment, let them use a nylon muzzle (it'll be ok), and get the exam and what diagnostics they can do with him awake QUICKLY.
Once your vet does their exam they can devise a plan of what needs to be done.
If the vet feels comfortable sedating for the rest of the diagnostics, that might be a good idea, but that'll have to be their call depending on how sick he is.

I hope it all works out ok, that his visit is less stressful than you imagine, and that he some treatment to help him.
 

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I just want to say I feel ya! I have an insanely aggressive dog at the vet and there is just no easy way to do it:( Mine cannot really be touched without being sedated (I won't allow it at this point) and I would NEVER allow him to be taken away from me without him being completely out of it and muzzled. When I phone to make the appointment I tell them that he is dangerous and not to be touched unless we have to. I use a slip collar high up on the neck to keep a maximum grip on him and do my best to stay confident and in control. I have yet to have a vet question me on it. Get him a good, well fitted basket muzzle just in case, it will make you feel better.
 

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You can ask the vet for a couple things prior to the visit,,some kind of tranq to chill him out, and ask them if they have a basket muzzle you could use..

Masi is terrified of my vet:( The only thing in life that scares her..She was really sick a couple months ago, I normally muzzle her when going to the vets because she IS so afraid, but the muzzle seems to chill her out..

Since I trust my vet's implicitely, I let them take her, she was fine with no muzzle. After having daily visits for 4 days straight w/ a cath in her, the muzzle was no longer needed (Yippeee).. She allowed them to do ALOT of stuff to her as well.

It was "me", put her on a leash with me on the other end, and she gets very "guardy" of me add that to her 'fear' of the vet, doesn't make good scene.

Again, I would ask if you can tranq him prior, take him in when they are ready for you, ask them about a basket muzzle.

Hope he is OK!!!
 

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I had issues w/ daisy and once w/ Lucky and one particular vet. I requested w/ daisy that we would go directly to a room not sit for long in the waiting room. My SIl uses tranqs for her terrier mix .I found that Daisy was better if I wasn't in the room where Chevy and Thunder are ok either way and lucky I have to be there. Most are vets require the owner to be there. I found w/ Daisy I had to really manage my worry or I would set her off. I also would bring my own treats that were high value but as Jaeger is having stomach issues not an idea for right now.
 

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Calm down, breathe. You are really panicking, which is understandable. But trust me that is only adding to your dog's anxiety. Honestly the level of your anxiety right now, I would not personally want to handle this dog in your presence.

That is NOTHING At all against you. I just sent you a PM. Trust me, I know first hand. I had an EXTREMELY fear aggressive dog. And I work in the field. I know very well both sides of the story.

As I said before sedatives with a vomiting/diarrhea dog should not be given unless absolutely necessary. Your dog may not like a firm hand on something like an xray table but it may be better for him in the long run. Sedating your dog and potentially causing him more harm as far as his health because you can't stand the thought of him being handled away from you is a VERY poor choice indeed, and selfish.

Trust me, we don't WANT to fight your very large, aggressive dog. If he needs sedatives and health permits, they will do everything they can to make it easier for both themselves and the dog.

Relax, and everything will be ok. For Luther's last minutes, they placed the IV catheter while I held. He was trying to bark at them. But then they gave a mild sedative, he relaxed in my arms. He reached up and licked my chin. And then they euthanized, and even with his life of aggression issues, he drifted off to sleep with no anxiety and no stress, just held in my arms.
 

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It might surprise you that he might do better AWAY from you.
My experience (20+ years working with animals) corroborates this. 99.9% of my clients' dogs behave much better when they are AWAY from their owners. I know it seems counterintuitive, but it's true. I have a few theories as to why this is, but I won't go into that right now.

The absolute best thing you can do when you get there is get out of the way as quickly as possible. I know this is hard to understand, but honestly, considering your own stress level and emotional upset, it will all go more smoothly without you in the picture. If you don't trust the vet you're going to, go elsewhere. If you are one of those people who don't trust ANY vet, you're going to have to decide whether you want your dog treated or not. If you decide you want treatment, you're going to have to put on your big-girl pants, grit your teeth, swallow your emotions and do what is in your dog's best interest by letting the vet do their job. I know it's hard when you feel like you're not in control of what happens, but believe me, professional veterinary staff will have a much better handle on the situation than you think.

As Anubis said, veterinary staff is trained on how to handle aggressive dogs--your dog isn't the first reactive, fear-aggressive GSD they've ever seen, trust me. I know, I know, everyone has seen the video showing some vet tech being abusive to an animal, but that is SO far out of the norm. I've worked for several veterinary establishments and I've never seen anything but kind, understanding treatment. Even (especially) for aggressive dogs. No one wants to hurt, frighten, or punish your dog for being frightened--all we want is to help--we just wish we could make animals understand this.

You may want to call and ask the vet if you can give your dog a sedative before he comes in, but due to his symptoms, it may be contraindicated. If the vet agrees to give you something to give to him, can you pick up and carry him in and out of the car?

Just breathe and not focus on all the things that COULD go wrong. If you're stressed out that could encourage his fear even more (I do understand it's genetics but we don't want to spur him on by being tense).
Exactly. By freaking out, you're not doing yourself or your dog any favors. I understand the anxiety and emotion, but you have to be strong for his sake, and trust the professionals. Yes, they are going to have to do unpleasant things that he may not like (blood draws etc) but it's never as bad as you think it's going to be--it may be temporarily traumatic, but probably more so for you (and the techs) than for the dog. He will forget about it within a few minutes, and if he is sedated, he probably won't remember any of it.

Bottom line: Trust your vet. You do your part, let them do their part.
 
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