Importance of Educating Pet Owners on Appropriate Handling & Restraint Techniques

October 5, 2016
American Veterinarian Editorial Staff

Debbie Martin, LVT, VTS (Behavior), animal behavior technician for Veterinary Behavior Consultations, co-owner of Team Education in Animal Behavior, discusses the importance of educating clients on appropriate animal handling and restraint techniques.

Debbie Martin, LVT, VTS (Behavior), animal behavior technician for Veterinary Behavior Consultations, co-owner of Team Education in Animal Behavior, discusses the importance of educating clients on appropriate animal handling and restraint techniques.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“Clients can become really involved with helping their pet be more comfortable in coming to the veterinary hospital. I think it’s important that we educate the clients on some of the techniques that we use to make handling and restraint less stressful because we’re often sending home treatments that the client is going to have to do with their pet and if they’re not using those same techniques, they’re going to create that fear, anxiety, and stress that’s going to carry over into the veterinary hospital. Educating [clients] on humane and gentle handling techniques as well as [on] how to distract the pet with things the pet likes, [is imperative to] creating a positive emotional response [to] handling or restraint.

Also, [it's important to prepare] the pet for travel. If the pet comes to the veterinary hospital and is all upset and anxious because the car ride made them nauseous, or they felt unsafe while they were traveling, or they got shoved into that carrier (for the cat friend), they’re going to be already at a point where they’re not going to have a pleasant experience at the veterinary hospital because they’re already worked up. So, teaching [clients] how to acclimate the pet to travel can be a very important aspect.”