No need to fear the vet

Chelsea Powrie

The Penticton SPCA is launching a new program aimed at easing pet anxiety when visiting the vet.

Fear Free was created by a vet in Colorado who decided there were ways to make the vet less stressful for pets, owners and staff.

Karen Retallick, the Penticton SPCA practice manager, has completed her certification, along with all of her staff.

"Our goal is to help animals and their guardians have the best possible experience, from the moment they leave their homes until they return," Retallick said. 

The Fear Free approach includes methods like having separate entrances and exam rooms for dogs and cats, using reward-based psychology to create good associations and even using cat and dog pheromone scents to put the animals at ease during examinations or X-rays.

Retallick said not only do these methods help the animals, they make work a lot safer for her staff, too.

"We get a lot less scratches," Retallick said. 

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