As a veterinarian looking to start a private practice that is fully equipped with surgery services, you must understand the level of anxiety that pets and pet owners go through as they prepare for treatment procedures. And the truth is that it is difficult to operate on an overly anxious pet. Since different types of surgeries vary in complexity, keeping a patient as calm as possible is vital. The good news is that there are calming techniques that veterinarians can use to ensure a successful treatment procedure. Read on.
Pheromone Therapy -- Pheromones are biological chemicals whose primary role is communication between members of the same species. Since your veterinary clinic is an unfamiliar environment for most of your pet patients, anxiety levels increase, and this can affect diagnosis before a surgical procedure. Therefore, using artificial pheromones in your clinic — specifically in your examination room — can help to calm patients pre-operation. The application is referred to as pheromone therapy. Studies have shown that veterinary clinic examination and surgery rooms that are treated with synthetic pheromones help reduce to distress level on patients considerably. The best areas to apply artificial pheromones are on beddings, cages, used diffusers and even on veterinary personnel handling the patients pre-operation.
Pressure Touch -- It is another stress-reducing technique that is used widely by veterinary surgeons. It involves inducing precise circular movements or lifts on a patient's body in a bid to help them relax. Body wraps are excellent pressure touch tools for calming anxious pets that are just about to go under the knife. Body wraps can come in the form of compression jackets or even the good-old elastic bandage wrapped on a patient's body. The tools work by localising pressure in highly tensed parts of the pet's body based on the concept of swaddling. Reducing visual stimuli, although not based on pressure touch, can help reduce anxiety pre-surgery. It is effective on pets that are overly anxious to strangers and in unfamiliar environments, such as an operating room.
Aromatherapy -- Since pets are supposed to spend the night at the clinic before surgery, the absence of the pet's owners can trigger severe anxiety. If the tension is not addressed, then the chances of the procedure happening reduce significantly. It can be a problem if the surgery cannot wait another day. For such pets, aromatherapy can work wonders because it involves the use of calming oils. When the oil is placed in the cage rooms the night before the operation, the dog or cat will exhibit reduced signs of anxiety. You should, however, avoid placing essential oils on the beddings of feline patients. It is because cats are susceptible to the toxic effects of direct ingestion of essential oils.
Talk with other veterinary surgery centres about what they do to help their patients stay calm before, during and after the surgery.