Taking The “Pet” Out Of Petrified | Village Vets

“When’s your next dentist appointment?” Sorry if we gave you palpitations; those are strong words, words that strike fear into the heart of any adult. Similarly, a lot of us become anxious when it’s time for a check-up at the GP. The laughing thing is whenever my Shadow had to be taken to the Vet he’d hate seeing me coming with the crate. It’s almost as if they know where we’re taking them! Well, we’re here today to take the “pet” out of petrified and make your life easier when it comes to bringing your furry-friend for a check-up!


Crate or Box?:

The act of transporting your animal to your Vet is often the largest stumbling block; they hate it, you hate it, it’s not nice for anyone! Some simple tricks I learned with Shadow was to leave his transport crate in plain sight, put a me-smelling blanket inside and let him suss it out in his own time. This will help your pet feel more comfortable when the time or need arises to transport them in said container. While pet-grade crates work best, in one particular emergency Shadow landed at the Vets wrapped in towels and tucked in a basket like a new-born!

Dogs, on the other hand, can be both easier and harder to transport; it ultimately depends on their size. Similarly with cats, placing their transport crate in open sight and having a you-smelling blanket will make it appear more inviting to your pet. You may even find that they prefer lying in their crate as opposed to their bed! Once they’ve become accustomed to the crate or box, you should have no problem corralling them into it when the time comes. Treats can also be used to lure your pet in, but I always felt ashamed when Shadow stared back through the bars…




Setting Off:

Pets can be quite empathetic creatures, able to pick up on the smallest emotions we express. When a visit to the Vet is coming up, try to make as little fuss about it as possible. Even after getting them into the crate and into the car, pretend that you’re simply going to a park or a pet shop. Upon arriving at the Vets you can start to relax as they’ll soon be in safe hands.

If you’re pet is still frightened or upset about their journey, it’s important that you speak to them in a comforting voice, as if they were a toddler. Alternatively, you can prepare them for future journeys by introducing them to your preferred mode of transport long before an emergency. Allow them to investigate your car on their own terms and they’ll be much happier when it comes to travelling in it!

You can compliment the above by taking your pet on incrementally longer drives. Start out by taking them in the car for a minute, then five minutes, then ten minutes. Eventually you’ll reach a point of critical mass where they’ll no longer be frightened by having to go anywhere in the car! Alas, not all of us have access to that kind of transport, so if you’re depending on a bus or a train we recommend covering your pet’s crate with a large blanket; this will help dampen strange noises while helping them to relax in reduced light.


Home and Safe:

Once the visit has come and gone, you may find that your pet is out of sorts or not quite themselves. This is a natural response to frightening or tense situations and will subside after a few hours or days. Make sure your pet has their favourite toy, favourite treat and their bed is padded with an extra layer or two. There’s nothing like getting into your bed and curling up for the night after a stressful event; the same goes for our poor pets!


We hope that the above has armed you for any future journeys your pet may need to your trusted Vet. There’s literally tonnes of strategies and tricks you can use to help your pet feel safer during stressful periods, but it’s about finding what works for you and yours! If you have any questions you can always contact us.

Bye for now pet-pals!