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Preparing Your Pup for His First Vet Appointment

So you’re the parent of that preppy new pup? Congratulations! You’ve gotten his crate, a couple of matching leashes, favorite chew toys, and stocked up on the best foods you could find. Great! Now that you’ve found your perfect pup, it’s time to schedule a vet appointment. Because, as cute and energetic as Boomer can be, he can feel less-than-awesome sometimes. Hence, your cute Boomer is going to need a team to keep him healthy.

Say hello to the Vet Clinic!

However, the first trip to the vet can be stressful for your little fluff ball if he isn’t prepared for it. It’s his first time after all. You want to make the experience as smooth as possible and less daunting, there are a couple of habits you need to inculcate before dropping by the vet’s office. 

If you’re a new proud parent, here are few tips to help you prepare your pup for a visit to the vet:

  1. Accustom Your Puppy With Car Rides

It’s a bad idea to only take your pup for a car ride only when it’s a trip to the vet. Soon enough, he will associate car rides with fear and scary shots. 

Make brief trips to enjoyable places such as a park or just sightseeing. If you’re concerned about the safety of your buddy during the trip, you can place him in a crate or use a canine harness restraint. Let him play with one of his toys to cheer him up. 

And if you want to take it up a notch, you could spritz calming fragrances in the car. This kind of scent would relax them as dogs possess a powerful nose.  

  1. Introduce The Vet Clinic Beforehand

Visiting the clinic ahead of time may be difficult if you’re busy, but your pup would appreciate the effort. It’ll make an enormous difference to your dog’s real appointment. 

You can get to the clinic when it’s less busy and crowded with ‘strange’ dogs. Let your pup get familiar with the waiting room, the exam room, and the staff. The team will most likely say hi to your dog and drop a few treats. Since there will be no procedures and lots of people eager to play with him, the clinic won’t provoke fear for your pup.

You can even take the time to fill out the necessary paperwork. 

If possible, take two or three trial runs before the actual appointment for maximum results.

  1. Remain Calm On The Big Day

Dogs are quite sensitive. 

It’s a known fact that pups pick up the energy of their owners and act accordingly. Meaning, yes, your emotions are contagious. If you’re making a fuss, your pup is likely to as well. 

Get all the information and items you need to prepare in advance from the clinic—a list of medications, stool samples, urine samples, etc.

Don’t change your routine, and remain cheerful so your baby knows nothing is wrong.

Teaching Your Pup to Answer Commands: Tips on Training Your Dog

Since you absolutely adore your bundle of fluff, you would want to keep her safe by ensuring she learns basic obedience to commands. Dogs easily fall prey to distractions. One moment Betsy is chewing on her favorite toy in the park, the next, she’s running fast ahead, chasing a butterfly.  Teaching your Betsy basic commands will prove useful to keep her away from potential danger and of course, skunk attack!  Another upside is the fact that you can take the leash off of her and have a successful outing. To help you make that dream come true, here are basic tips …

  1. Get All Your Materials Ready.

To start on the right note (or nose!), you need to get the necessary tools that are required for successful training. You will need a leash, a proper collar, and, of course, a large supply of treats for positive reinforcement.

Having something to eat motivates every dog. 

  1. Speak In Clear Tones

When uttering commands to your little pup, you need to speak in a normal, rational tone—that inspires trust and confidence. 

Yelling passes the message that you’re upset and it could stress her out, making her more anxious. It could even risk damaging the precious bond with your puppy.

Use an excited voice when you want to praise your dog for following commands. When you want to deliver a correction, employ a growly tone. But when you want to issue commands that speak with more authority and less correction, use a flat, low-pitched tone. 

  1. Use Concise Commands

Choose commands that are not just clear, but easy to remember for consistency. This will prevent your dog from being confused. Some common commands include:

  • Sit
  • Stay
  • Heel (to keep her walking at your side)
  • Down (to lie down)
  • Stand 
  • Come
  1. Have Brief Training Sessions

Dogs have a short attention span, therefore, it’s advisable to have brief training sessions that span around 10-15 minutes. Introduce the commands bit by bit. 

Recall that these commands are habits that your dog needs to pick up. And like all habits, repetition strengthens them. Do 5-20 repetitions of one command before moving to the next one.

  1. Practice Outdoors

Practicing indoors with your little buddy helps her build behaviors without distractions. However, you need to certify that your dog can listen to commands in an unfamiliar environment. 

Hence, outdoor pieces of training are necessary. Here, your dog will understand that commands you issue inside or in your backyard, means the same in all situations. 

  1. Reinforce Good Behavior

Positive reinforcements are meant to reward your dog and help her understand when she performs well. Reward her with treats, but ensure to keep it small; since you’ll be using them many times. 

Also, avoid treats she would need to actively break apart—it would only lead to distractions.

In addition, mix verbal rewards with food rewards; eventually cutting down on the frequency of treats.