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Took-'em-long-enuf Dept: recognizing risk of CONSEQUENCES due to methods

Discussion in 'Dog Behaviour and Training' started by leashedForLife, May 13, 2018.

  1. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife Well-Known Member Registered

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    Between A Rock & A Hard Place

    For decades, veterinarians [among others] have persisted in handling dogs & other nonhumans as they bl**dy well pleased, on the theory that "we need to do __X__ , & this animal is just gonna have to go along with our agenda". :shrug:
    They simply refused to admit the possibility, let alone the PROBability, that their own actions would have bad repercussions re that nonhuman's future behavior, or their trust in humans. This was not only anthropocentric & arrogant, it was frequently self-defeating.

    As just one example, i had a farrier who came by regularly to shoe my POA mare, only on her forehand, as she had a bad habit of pawing with her right hoof, & she not only wore it irregularly, she made a quarter-crack, which took over a year to completely resolve.
    One day, i don't know if Mike was in an unusually irritable mood, or if Pecas was just the last in a series of horses that day getting on his last nerve, but she got tired of holding a hoof up & standing on 3, & insisted on putting it down. He slapped her. Bad move - she wasn't injured, no, but it took 6-mos to re-establish her previous level of confidence & co-operation, & it was no-one's fault but his own. :--{

    Vets, ACOs, vet-techs, shelter staff, groomers, dog-walkers, & other folks in the animal care quadrant are finally beginning to acknowledge that YES, what they do AND HOW THEY DO IT have major impacts on how animals behave, both in the moment & in future encounters, & that harsh handling, brute force, & severely stressing an animal aren't "inevitable" & actually matter. It's not OK to just git 'er done - how U do it can, in fact, be more crucial in the long term than whether it's done at all, or done today, or done in a week or a month, or even a year.

    Yes, there are time-critical emergencies - an animal who's bleeding out needs immediate intervention, & there's little time for social amenities. But those are the exceptions.
    If we admit it, most handling encounters do allow time to reduce the animal's stress, whether by bundling, cocooning, blanketing, lure vs shove, entice rather than entrap, & so on.
    The late Dr Sophia Yin was a powerful advocate for low-stress handling & a great educator - i wish she was still here to spread her message & methods. :(

    - terry

    merlina likes this.
  2. Mad Murphy

    Mad Murphy Well-Known Member Registered

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    Max's first visit to a vet after puppy vacs was for a very sore infected ear. He was about 7 months old. The vet asked which ear..I pointed it out and he lunged forward and just grabbed the ear .. Max responded by growling a warning at the rough painful treatment of a very sore ear and to my shock the vet responded by slapping him round that same ear !!! Max reacted to that by standing up and pinning the guy to the door bearing his teeth as a warning. First and last time we ever saw that vet but from then on Max became very warey of vets.
    Max was a bouvier des flanders X st bernard..

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    leashedForLife likes this.
  3. JudyN

    JudyN Well-Known Member Registered

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    I'm afraid with a dog with Jasper's nature, 'getting the job done' at the vet is often the only way. But my vet is as hands-off as possible, and if Jasper has a slight limp with no obvious injury, then the vet will simply observe and won't try to feel him - his muscles would be completely clenched up anyway.

    However, I've managed to desensitise him to both ear drops and eye drops, whereas if I'd just gone straight in... it would have turned very ugly. It just goes to show the power of positive methods.
    leashedForLife and Mad Murphy like this.

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