Veterinarians Look To Change The Industry With "Fear Free" Pet Care

Veterinarians Look To Change The Industry With "Fear Free" Pet Care

Having a pet in the family is a big responsibility. They take a lot of attention and love, and they rely on us to take care of them.

One thing most responsible pet owners do is ensure their furry friends have regular visits to the veterinarian. Just like humans, pets need regular check-ups and care, but unfortunately, many pets don't get the care that they need.

One reason some pet owners stay away from the vet's office is because of the fear, anxiety, and stress that the visit causes their pets.

Thankfully, there's a movement dedicated to changing that. Fear Free Pets is on a mission "to prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety, and stress in pets by inspiring and educating the people who care for them."

According to Scripps News, veterinarian Dr. Robin Downing runs the Windsor Veterinary Clinic in Northern Colorado and acts as the hospital director of the Downing Center for Animal Pain Management, and she says "fear free care" has been a growing focus in the industry.

She said, "It turns out dogs really like reggae, and so we have this soft beat of reggae in the background. Fear free veterinary practice is all about taking the pet out of petrified and putting the treat into treatment. And what it means fundamentally is seeing the veterinary visit through the eyes of the patient, through the eyes of the pet."

Dr. Downing is a pioneer in the fear-free veterinarian space, following behind the founder of the movement, Dr. Marty Becker.

Some of the things included to promote a fear-free space include special lighting, warm blankets, and specific music backed by audiology research among other things.

According to Fox 47 News, Downing said of her practice: "We shift our focus from a cure-based treatment to a comfort-based treatment."

It seems that the COVID-19 pandemic actually spurred the movement, as many pet owners had a mindset shift regarding their companion animals during that time. Downing said, "They've gone from the kennel to the couch and from the couch to sleeping on the end to the bed and sometimes sleeping under the covers." People want quality, comforting care for their furbabies and the fear-free movement is hoping to offer it to pet owners everywhere.

You can learn more about the Fear Free Pets movement in the video below, or check out its website here.

Malorie Thompson

Malorie works as a writer and editor in Northern California. She's passionate about food, conscious living, animal welfare, and conservation. She's worked with a variety of publications in different sectors but is happiest covering topics close to her heart. When not at her laptop, Malorie can be found enjoying picnics on the beach, hiking in the redwoods, and spending time with her rescue pup, Jax.

Back to blog