Taking your pet to a veterinarian who specializes in pet acupuncture can help the furry member of your family in a variety of ways, including with pain reduction. However, if your pet generally gets a little fussy when it's time to head to the vet, it may initially seem like a challenge to think about having the animal calm enough for an acupuncture session. Although the needles won't harm your pet, an anxious pet could be restless during the treatment, thus reducing its efficacy. Here are some methods that you can use to calm down your pet in advance of the acupuncture session at the vet's clinic.
Arrive Early and Take a Walk
If you're dealing with a dog, one of the best ways to help it calm down is by taking it for a walk; the energy that is exerted during the outing can help burn off steam that has amassed through anxiety. It's a good strategy to arrive at the vet's clinic well in advance of the scheduled appointment and take your animal for a walk through the neighborhood. This will help to alleviate the stress that the animal may have experienced in your vehicle, which can occur especially if the pet doesn't like riding in a car.
Don't Talk Too Much
Speaking excessively to your pet can increase its anxiety. You may think that you're helping by telling your pet how the trip to the veterinarian for some acupuncture will alleviate its hip pain, for example, but you need to remember that your pet has no idea what you're saying. Pets certainly understand a number of words, but if you're using words that the pet doesn't know—for example, things beyond the basic commands that you've taught it—you may be increasing its anxiety.
Try to Remain Calm Yourself
Pets have an uncanny ability to notice the moods of their owners, and if you're highly anxious about the appointment, it's possible that the pet will pick up on this anxiety, too. Do whatever it takes to calm yourself down in advance of the trip to the vet. If you're concerned about how the acupuncture session will go, call the vet and relay this concern. He or she will be able to provide some encouragement and share success stories of other animals who have benefited from the same treatment, which should help you feel better and in turn prevent your pet from picking up on your anxiety.
Talk to a professional such as Downing Center For Animal Pain Management for more ideas on how to keep your pet calm before an acupuncture session.