If you are worried about your dog's upcoming trip to the vet, be sure to think about your dog's needs in the waiting room as well. If you have an overly anxious or even overly friendly dog, this needs to be considered when it comes to waiting room etiquette. Here are four tips for you and your dog to follow when it comes to the waiting room at the vet's office.
1. Don't be too Early
If your dog hates to sit still or might get overly excited when out of the home, don't torture them in the veterinarian's waiting room. There might be other pets that are there for emergency care or some smaller dogs or cats that are fearful of your dog. Call ahead and make sure your vet is on schedule. Stay in the car until it's time for your appointment so your dog isn't forced to sit still for too long.
2. Bring Treats Along
Having the right snacks for your dog can keep their focus on you, and you will have distractions when you need them. If your dog's training seems to go out the window when they are excited, having treats to back up your commands can keep them in the zone. If your dog might be a little anxious, be sure to give them calming chews before their appointment so they won't be so anxious in the waiting room.
3. The Correct Restraints
Depending on the size of your dog, be sure to have them crated or on a leash when visiting the vet. Even if you know your dog is well behaved and will stay close, others will not and might be scared of your free-range dog. Going the extra mile with muzzles and harnesses can keep your dog a little more in control. This might make others feel safer, especially if your dog is bigger or a breed that is known for aggression.
4. Know Your Dog's Limitations
You know your dog better than anyone else, and they will be looking to your for cues on how to react in specific situations. If you know your dog can get shy, anxious, or overly excited, don't push them into a situation where they might exhibit bad behavior, especially if this is an emergency vet visit. See if you can use the side entrance at the vet if you don't think your dog is ready for the waiting room.
While a veterinarian's waiting room might be one of the more pet-friendly environments out there, there are still some expectations of furry patients. Don't make the mistake of breaking any waiting room rules just because your dog is a little overwhelmed or needs emergency care. Do what you can to make time the waiting room a calm and easy environment for your dog and others.