Fear-Free in action: Treats take the scary out of clippers


We used a Hansel and Gretel trail of cheerios and a bottle of squeeze cheese to coach a shy pet through a potentially scary veterinary visit.

This is Sweetie. She is never aggressive, but doesn't like visiting the vet. Usually she puts on the brakes when she enters the room. We didn't want to drag her. So instead we left a trail of cheerios, which she followed down the hallway to the treatment area like Hansel and Gretel. 

Clippers are one of the scariest things in the world for a shy dog. We decided that this type of scary needed something special. Squeeze cheese did the trick. She was so happy to eat, she stood still with barely any restraint and let us clip the side of her face-right near her ear. This visit was Fear-Free all the way!

Do you have a Fear-Free tip that's worked for you? Email us at firstline@advanstar.com. We'll pay $50 for every tip we publish. 

Dr. Amy Learn is a veterinarian at Cary Street Veterinary Hospital in Richmond, Virginia.

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