Hello World! We would like to take this opportunity to welcome all of you to our latest online feature. We are including all current and potential Best Care clients, as well as the usual suspects (trolls, bots, Russian spies, not to mention Skynet and the NSA guys
You are fortunate enough to behold the inaugural edition of the Best Care L Street Online Gazette blog, or BLOG
And now, some very important disclaimers:
We know your pets are extremely important to you, and we as veterinary professionals, do not take that lightly. There may be some light-hearted, irreverent or sarcastic remarks that get past the editor. These are for literary purposes only. This blog is meant to educate and entertain, not offend. We do not mean to disrespect pets and the people who love and care for them.
We appreciate and respect the people who perform research and publish their findings, and we do not take copyright infringement lightly. The BLOG blog will try to use current data when
While the BLOG blog may resemble an interaction with your veterinarian, it does not represent a valid veterinarian-client relationship. If you have specific questions about your pet, please contact your veterinarian. The BLOG blog can only offer general advice meant for the general public.
Finally, don’t believe everything you read on the internet. We will try to keep things factual, but typos happen. Spellcheck doesn’t care if you use the wrong word, as long as you spell it correctly. If you happen to see something that doesn’t make sense, contact us so we can rephrase it and/or correct any errors that may have occurred. If you were an English major (or a Journalism major who worked as copy chief for a major national magazine), and come across grave grammatical errors, please contact us immediately. Thank you.
Next, with apologies to Mick Jagger, please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Dr. Debbie Appleby. I am one of the veterinarians practicing at the Best Care location on L Street in Omaha, Nebraska. I graduated from the University of Minnesota in
Also, my personal scope of practice is limited to dogs and cats, so my topics will be limited to those species. We do have vets on staff who see a wider variety of animals. For example, the brilliant Dr. Brunssen tends to most mammals under about 200 lbs and our awe-inspiring Chief of Staff (practice owner) Dr. Bosilevac will see almost any pet you can bring to the clinic (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians etc.). Of
And now, without further ado, I would like to introduce to you the concept of “Fear Free”
According to their website (fearfreepets.com), from which I shall be borrowing quite heavily in the following paragraphs, “Fear Free’s mission is to prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety
As we all know, doctor visits are not fun. The tedious paperwork, the uncomfortable waiting room, hospital gowns, more waiting, the discomfort and embarrassment of being poked and prodded,
So how do we go about this? The obvious answer is
There are also some other, perhaps not quite as obvious, techniques we use to minimize the fear, anxiety
To learn more about “Fear Free”, and check out other helpful articles about a variety of animal behavior topics, go to their website, FearFreePets.com and look under the pet owners tab.
Here are a few suggestions for making your visit to the vet clinic as pleasant as possible:
Do not feed your pet before the visit. An empty stomach will increase the appeal of the aforementioned
Transport them safely. I am not questioning your driving skills. I am merely recommending that small pets ride in a carrier, and large dogs are restrained with a seat belt harness so they are not roaming around in a moving vehicle. In the car, free-ranging pets can potentially climb on the driver or get into the footwell. This can be a dangerous distraction. Also, unrestrained pets are at higher risk of injury in case of a sudden stop. Again, I am not doubting your driving skills. It’s that other guy you must watch out for – you know the one. He’s texting, trying to find the cigarette he dropped between the seats and eating a cheeseburger, all while trying not to spill his beer. Staying out of his haphazard path is hard enough without a dog on your lap or a cat on your head. If you need to transport both a Rottweiler and a cooler full of food, it is best to separate them before you leave. Waiting
While in your car, you can also make the trip a little less exciting by staying calm and playing quiet music (preferably classical). There are much better times to play Pantera at full volume and scream along with Phil. (I will now pause while some of you use
Upon arrival at the veterinary clinic, we will escort you and your (still restrained) pet to the exam room as soon as possible. The waiting room can be a stressful place, as it is often filled with the sights, sounds, and scents of other animals. Dog owner - even if your pet is usually friendly to others, the others may not be feeling friendly at that particular moment, and we don’t want any friendly overtures turning into altercations
Once in the exam room, it’s ok to let your pet check the place out. Open the door to the carrier and give your cat the option of exploring. Drop the leash and let your dog wander around and sniff and sniff and sniff. Also, to the best of your ability, Reeelaaaax. Take a couple slow, deep breaths. If you are nervous and upset, your pet will sense your tension. Bad vibes can be contagious, even between species.
When the vet personnel
Don’t forget that is your pet has special dietary restrictions, please bring a large supply of approved
There can be occasions when your pet is very upset, and we cannot proceed safely without the use of a muzzle. This is absolutely NOT a poor reflection on you. It is not your fault. We know your dog is not like this at home. This is a very different situation, and your dog may act very differently than he does at home. In fact, if all dogs acted at home the way some of them act at the vet clinic, cavemen would have given up on domestication thousands of years ago. We do our best to minimize the stress, but we still need to take appropriate precautions.
At the end of your visit, you always have the option of settling the financial aspect in the exam room, or leaving your pet in the room while you go to the desk or taking your pet out to the car first, then coming back in alone. Any of these options is fine for us. Just let us know how we can make you and your pet the most comfortable (or least uncomfortable). We’re here to help however we can. That’s what we do.
This concludes the premier edition of BLOG blog. If you have read my ramblings thus far, I commend you. I now dub you “Bored Surfer” and will refer to you as such in the future. We hope you will return to view future installments, like the next one, scheduled for Feb 2. In the meantime, stay safe and warm, don’t drink any anti-freeze, keep the litter box clean and work hard on that New Year’s Resolution to tell the world how much you love your veterinarian.
At this point, I would like to introduce my witty and whimsical sign-off, but my Muse has not yet issued it. So you will have to settle for the following:
I hope you were half as entertained reading this as I was writing it.
Farewell, Bored Surfer, and best wishes for 2019.
Deborah J. Appleby, D.V.M.