Providing Fear Free Pet Care in Irvine
Your pet’s emotional well-being is just as important as their physical health. In fact, the two are intertwined. If your pet is stressed, anxious, and fearful about going to the vet, then they are less likely to receive important care that will keep them healthy. At Irvine Valley Veterinary Hospital, easing your pet’s anxiety plays a pivotal role in the care we provide. We know that vet visits can be stressful, even for the most laid-back pets. With the Fear Free sm initiative, we can communicate more clearly to our patients that they are safe with us.
What Fear Free Is
In 2016, Fear Freesm was founded as a program where practicing veterinarians and their employees could learn and implement special care techniques for reducing anxiety in their patients. The mission of Fear Free sm is to actively “prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety, and stress in pets by inspiring and educating the people who care for them.” Currently, Fear Freesm offers 4 programs for veterinary professionals, veterinary practices, trainers, and pet owners.
Our Fear Free Veterinarians
Dr. Cao, Dr. Simpson, Dr. Nauss, Dr. Tondo, Dr. Nguyen and Dr. Bobula all underwent training to become Fear Free Certified Professionals. Our goal is to make Irvine Valley Veterinary Hospital a Fear Free Certified Practice, where these practices are integrated into all areas of our animal hospital. To qualify, 25% of our staff must be individually certified. Fear Free Certified Practices have access to a greater number of resources to support and improve their Fear Free sm status. Why have we chosen this path? Because your pet’s emotional and physical well-being are important to us.
What We Do
Steps we take to reduce fear and anxiety in our patients include:
- Giving treats as positive reinforcement and distraction during treatments, such as nail trims and vaccinations
- Using dog and cat pheromones in exam rooms and on towels to instill a sense of calm in patients
- Gentle, minimal handling and restraint techniques
- Having designated dog and cat exam rooms
- Moving skittish patients from the lobby to exam rooms quickly so they aren’t frightened by other animals
- Keeping sudden movements, loud, abrupt noises, and other stressors to an absolute minimum whenever possible
- Examining pets where they feel comfortable, like in their owner’s lap, in their carrier (with lid removed), or on the floor
- Using non-slip mats on floors and exam tables
- …and much more
Learn More About Fear Free sm
You can visit fearfreepets.com for more information about the Fear Free sm initiative, or you can call us at (949) 552-5200. We would be happy to answer your questions and give you a better idea of what we do, and why. Our team looks forward to improving your pet’s care and helping them stay healthy for as many years as possible!