Puppy plan

We step in their shoes

stress free cat

Stress-free vet visits

“Treat them as your own” and “Step in their shoes” – are two core values which underline everything we do at The Strand Vet. This means we are passionate about making visits to us as stress free as possible. While it may not be possible to entirely alleviate stress and fear, there are many techniques, tools, and tips to greatly reduce your pet’s anxiety around vet clinic and vet hospital visits.

We are so passionate about this important area of veterinary care, that every one of us is certified, or working on certification, as a “Fear Free Veterinary Professional”. This means we are all armed with the latest information on making your pet’s visit the best it can be.

If you have a pet who is apprehensive, or even aggressive for their veterinary visits - please give us a call and talk to one of our qualified team members about how we can work with you to plan for your pet’s next visit.

Our mission is to prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety, and stress for you pet by providing you with trained veterinary professionals in a healing and stress-free vet hospital environment.

Puppy plan
Huskie dog

Co-operative Care Training

Have you ever wondered how zookeepers do dental checks on polar bears, or take blood from a lion or zebra, without having to sedate them every time? As companion animal veterinary professionals, we wondered about this too and were intrigued when the concept of co-operative care was introduced to us.

As a vet clinic we are always looking for ways to "step into their shoes" and improve the experience of the four legged who come through our doors. We have already put in place a number of systems including separate dog and cat consulting and waiting rooms, calming pheromone diffusers (Adaptil and Feliway), following cat friendly handling protocols (no scruffing or pegs around here), longer consultation times as we know it takes time to care, pre-visit drug protocols for anxious patients and recently putting all team members through fear free veterinary training. Despite all of this, there are some patients who fear aspects of handling or husbandry, which creates a barrier in providing quality veterinary care.

This is a place where co-operative care can step in - a training system that allows the animal to become an active and willing participant in their husbandry care, allowing them to have a choice. A choice to say, ‘not now thank you’, or ‘yes go ahead that's ok with me’. This training allows no force or coercion, and while it is a little new to companion animal veterinary care, it has been around for a long time.

scared cat

How does it work?

What sort of procedures can be performed with co-operative care?

In the veterinary clinic we can take blood samples without physical restraint from trained patients - being able to obtain a blood sample is gold because it provides us with so much information about the animal's health, allowing us to make informed decisions about sedative drug protocols if needed. We can also perform physical exams (including temperatures), give injections, take relaxed blood pressure and ECG readings, perform abdominal ultrasounds, examine ears and eyes and clip nails - all while giving the animal a choice and without restraint.

Is co-operative care for everyone?

Yes! Every animal can learn no matter how old or what species (this includes cats!). Co-operative care does require patience and understanding from the veterinary professionals and the owner - in the beginning it may not be as quick as restraining the patient. As much as we would love to train all our patients, co-operative care is primarily driven by training at home with some sessions in the clinic, so we need co-operative owners too.

Is co-operative care only for animals who have had problems at the vet clinic?

Not at all - co-operative care is best taught to puppies and kittens so they can learn how to be active participants in their own husbandry from a young age. For example, it's possible to teach animals to accept ear drops before they ever develop problems - this is much easier than training after you've spent months having to catch and hold your pet to apply drops into painful infected ears.

Is co-operative care only for animals who have had problems at the vet clinic?

We recommend you join us with our Pet Project Wellness Plans where this is included in your annual subscription or book a nurse consultation by contacting our team. One of our training team will discuss realistic goals and to put a training plan in place for you and your pet. This is a journey we are thrilled to help you and your pet travel together. Co-operative care is about choice for your animal, who does not normally get much of a say about anything - it's a new concept for many people and for us, and we're excited for the future it holds.