Do you have a pet that hates having their nails trimmed? Or maybe your pet is fine at the vet EXCEPT when it comes to taking their temperature. One way to deal with these fears is to utilize the concept of "desensitization" and "classical conditioning".
Desensitization is the process of teaching the learner that a specific stimulus is non-threatening over time, through repeated controlled gentle exposures.
Classical conditioning links emotional responses with a stimulus over time through predictions.
The goal is to link stimuli such as having your pet's tail lifted or having their nails trimmed, with a yummy treat to create a positive emotional response.
Make sure your pet likes the treat you are offering and knows how to use the treat delivery method. For example, not all pets are used to eating off a spoon or tongue depressor.
Go slow - Listen to your pet and only increase the intensity when your pet is comfortable
These videos fast forward the training process for learning purposes.
Some pets are not used to be restrained. It is not common that we hear that pets "like to do things on their own terms". However, restraint for procedures is an essential part of training. For example, all dogs need an annual heartworm test which requires restraint for a blood draw.
Remember, your pet will be more open to learning when they are not in a stressful environment, such as at home with their owner. Getting your pet used to being restrained at home in a familiar environment will help them be much more comfortable when they are being restrained at the veterinary clinic.
Please give Loki and Lette a round of applaws!
These small training sessions can go a long way at making your pet much more comfortable at the vet.
Remember to keep training sessions short and fun!
If you would like to start working with your pet at home or have any questions about how to apply these concepts please contact us at 905 844 6786 or email@example.com. We would be more than happy to help you utilize these training methods.
**Veterinary services are essential but urgent care only**
The province has made revisions to the list of essential workplaces. Veterinary medicine remains an essential service, permitted to deliver URGENT CARE only, as indicated in the list of essential workplaces provided by the Province of Ontario on April 3, 2020.
The list also provides permission for services including the sale of medication and pet supplies only through an alternative method of sale such as curb side pick-up or delivery, except in exceptional circumstances.
Therefore, we will only be accepting payment over the phone by visa card or e-transfer. Please call the clinic ahead of time to place your order at 905 844 6786. When you arrive, please call us again and we will bring your delivery to your car.
We will continue to provide urgent veterinary medical care for illnesses and injuries requiring prompt medication attention. Whenever possible we will continue to use telemedicine to keep our pets and clients safe. If your pet does need to be seen at the clinic, a member of our team will collect your pet from your car and communicate with you over the phone.
Please note under the government directive we have been instructed to not perform elective procedures, this includes spays and neuters. Preventative medicine may be necessary in specific cases and will be evaluated on a case by case basis. Please understand that ancillary services, such as grooming and nail trims are not essential services.
As pet owners we all want the same thing: to feed our pet a healthy, complete diet to promote a long and happy life.
A big part of choosing the right diet for your pet is being able to accurately interpret the label on the back of the bag. You can't assume a pet food is right for your pet by simply reading the ingredient list, because the nutrients are just as important as the ingredients!
Key tip: Consider nutrients as well as ingredients!
Now, lets compare the following two labels.
At a glance, the pet store diet definitely looks much more appealing, whole foods, vegetables ... it looks better than some of us eat! But remember, the pet food industry is not as regulated as it appears. Few pet food companies actually have a licensed veterinary nutritionist on their team, which is likely the reason why we are now seeing the emergence of nutritional based illnesses such as Dilated Cardiomyopathy which is linked to grain free, raw and exotic protein diets (visit this blog post on DCM).
A high quality pet food requires a precise blend of ingredients to meet a specific nutrient profile based on a pet's life stage, lifestyle of disease condition. This is the advantage to choosing a diet that has been formulated by a licensed veterinary nutritionist. They ensure that these nutrients are delivered to your pet in the right ratios for their stage of life.
That being said we still need to understand the ingredients list.
Here are the most common questions we hear pet owners ask:
Diet B contains pumpkin, herbs and berries, doesn't that make it a better diet?
Marketing based companies are good at coming up with "feel good" names. Remember that ingredients are listed in the order of highest weight to lowest weight, in most cases those "berries" amount to one berry per bag.
What exactly is "by-product meal"?
The term "by-product" has been created because they are the parts of the animal our society does not typically consume, such as the animal's organs. These parts of the animal are still nutritious. Various parts of the animal such as their meat, liver and internal organs are ground into meal, much of the fat is extracted, and the bone residue (ash) is reduced. This results in a high quality, concentrated source of protein which is also very tasty to both dogs and cats.
Chicken by-product meal consists of ground, rendered, wholesome parts of the chicken. It includes white meat, dark meat, liver and internal organs.
Meat by-product consists of the non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat from slaughtered mammals that do not include hair, horns, teeth and hoofs. These diets specifically use beef or pork lungs, spleens, or livers in their diets for consistency and optimal nutrient profile.
Poultry by-product meal includes white meat, dark meat, liver and organs from turkey, duck and chicken.
Do they put inferior parts of the animals in by product meal?
Do not worry! By-product meal does not use chicken feet, beaks, hair, hooves, teeth, nails etc as these are very low in nutritional quality. An indicator of this can be the mineral content of any commercial food (it should be lower vs higher which would indicate bone content of the diet). The ingredients that are used are organ meat such as lungs, heart, liver etc. These are high quality by products that are bone free and lower in mineral content.
The pet store assured me this is a very high quality diet. It is also very expensive. Don't they have a veterinary nutritionist formulating the diet?
Veterinary nutritionists are veterinarians who have undergone a medical specialization in all things related to your pet's dietary needs. Surprisingly, veterinary nutritionists are few and far between. Research the company making your dog’s food, and find out who has formulated the recipes. Make sure that a veterinary nutritionist is the one formulating all recipes, so you know your dog will be receiving an optimal diet. The American College of Veterinary Nutrition provides a directory of all board certified veterinary nutritionists.
Veterinary nutritionists focus on the nutrients derived from the ingredients used and how these benefit your pet. For example carrots and blueberries are healthy, but if we only ate these two things all the time, we would not be able to get the proper nutrients to fuel our bodies or help disease states. This is why we need to think about nutrients as well as ingredients when selecting a dog food.
Nutrients and high quality ingredients are both important in a pet food. But nutrients are what your pet's body absorbs, not ingredients. The optimum food is made of quality ingredients selected for nutrients, quality and taste precisely formulated to deliver the correct amount of protein, fat, carbohydrates, fibre, vitamins and minerals to meet the pet's nutritional needs. A pet food is a sum of it's parts.
As your pet's primary health care provider, we are here to help you choose the right diet for your pet. If you have any questions about your pet's diet. Please contact us at 905 844 6786 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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