bringing your pet to the vetYou’d think that a visit to the vet would be as simple as getting your pet into the car, driving to 204 East Gurney Street, and walking in the front door. Day after day, time after time, dogs and cats prove otherwise.

We’ve seen it all. Dogs might get so nervous that they balk, and cats so frightened that they barf. Big dogs may lunge and jerk the leash right out of their owner’s hands. Tiny cats could jump out of an embrace and get lost. All sizes of dogs are able to slip their collar and run away. Very well behaved pets sometimes misbehave badly. Dogs pee and poo right in the middle of the entrance. Yes, we’ve seen it all.

Here’s the good news. Our Fear Free practices don’t just start when you get into a treatment room. We want your visit to go smoothly starting – and ending – at home. Here’s how.


Crate Rules. If you use a crate or a carrier, help your pet to get comfortably inside it before you leave your home. Anchor the crate securely in your vehicle so it won’t slide around. Cats should always be brought in a carrier, as they are more prone to being ‘spooked’ than dogs when outside their own safe environment.

Leash Laws. If you use a leash, make sure that it is anchored to a harness that has adjustable straps. Adjustable harnesses can be tightened to fit the skinniest part of a body, so there is less chance of slipping out. Do not use a retractable leash. If your dog sees something that catches his/her attention, they can run and you may lose control. If you have more questions about types of collars or harnesses, let us know.

Careful Driving. Do all you can not to slam on brakes or sail around a curve.

Mood Music. Use pheromones, like the Adaptil that we use at TNC. Play soothing music that appeals to your dog’s heartbeat. Ask us for a playlist.

Nausea Nixers. If your dog is prone to throwing up in the car, ask us about anti nausea medicine.

Hungry Animals. Bring your pet hungry. Not only will it give them less food to throw up, it will make them ready to get all those magical TREATS that we give.


Short Leash. If your pet is in a carrier, leave her there. Keep the leash very short, with only one or two feet of slack.

Yummy Treats. When your pet is relaxed and obedient, give high value treats. Don’t overdo it, though. These should just be the appetizers for the treats that we will give in the exam room.

No Worries. If your pet doesn’t behave in the waiting room, if your dog poops or your cat yowls, please don’t be embarrassed! Again, we’ve seen it all.

Since Town N Country is a Fear Free practice, pet owners usually find that over time, dogs look forward to visits to us, and are eager to come inside. Cats usually add us to their list of safe places.

Let us know if you have more questions, or if you would like for us to make specific recommendations for your pet. We want your pet – and you – to have a safe and comfortable visit, and we’ll do our part to make seeing us a happy occasion.