WE ARE MOVING!
We do not have a date yet as we are waiting for the powers to be (Abbotsford City Hall) to give us that all-important building permit! But it has been estimated that we will be in our new building – JUST across the street from our present location – this spring (2017)… Fingers crossed!
What does this mean for our dogs? Well we are building our new practice with our dogs in mind – we are putting their comfort first! We are building Abbotsford’s first and presently only Fear Free Hospital. Dr. Horvat is certified in Fear Free Medicine and using their guidelines our new hospital will have some great new features.
- Non-slip floors, so the floors won’t be scary!
- Separate entrance for dogs who do not like other pets
- A hidden scale – one that is sunken in the floor and covered with a carpet so that getting weighed only involves sitting on a carpet.
- We are having a GIANT BREED friendly exam room
- The Fear Free Group of veterinarians has done studies to see if some colours are calming for our dogs. The answer is yes, and so our new clinic will even have dog friendly colour palate!
- Did you know that classical music and lavender are calming for the dogs – so of course we will have this for our canine’s listening and smelling pleasure
- Heated floors so that any dog laying on the floor is comfortable
But there are a few tricks you can do as well to make any vet visit a little less scary and a more enjoyable experience for your dog…
- Bring them in hungry! We have a variety of treats and there is nothing like a food treat to take your mind off having your ears looked at
- If your dog is a fussy eater bring in his or her favorite treat with you
- Your dog not food motivated? But has a favorite toy or absolutely ball obsessed? Then bring that toy in with you as a great distraction
- If your dog has to spend some time in the hospital with us bring things that smell of home – blankets – sweaters or T-shirts – toys – food – even their own bowl. Smell is important to our dogs and the more they can smell home and the ones they love the more relaxed and comfortable they will be.
Some things we already do and will be taking with us to our new clinic…
- We have in clinic Thunder Shirts that we use to help comfort some pets. They work like swaddling a baby. For some dogs we have found it comforting for them during exams, recovering from anesthesia, and just during hospitalization.
- We do many of our dog exams on the floor as many dogs are nervous high up on an exam room tables
- We use non-slip mats on our tables so those little guys who are on a table do not have to deal with a slippery surface.
- We use LOTS of treats
- For dogs with a lot of anxiety we will discuss with owners the options of a variety of anti-anxiety techniques, herbs and medication. We never want pets to be afraid. We have even worked with dogs training them not to be afraid by having them just stopping in for treats so that we can gradually gain the dog’s trust.
As for the future (hopefully spring 2017) …. We are hoping that the City of Abbotsford is going to allow us to convert some of our parking lot into two separate gardens. One will be associated with our comfort and compassion clinic to allow owners the option of saying good-bye to a beloved pet outside. The second garden will just be a small garden to allow outdoor exams if pets are too scared to come in, allow clients a nice spot to wait if they have to wait for tests to be completed and a spot for us to walk our patients.
We at the Fraser Valley Animal Hospital are really excited about what we are bringing to our pet community and we hope you and your dog will love it too!