Why do the staff members of AHNA want to give my dog so many treats?

When we give treats throughout the course of a visit, our goal is to make veterinary care a positive experience instead of something for you and your dog to dread. The frequency and timing of the treats is extremely important. Your dog cannot reason, “I like going to get veterinary care because I get a treat at the beginning and/or the end of the visit.” To help your dog enjoy coming in for medical care, he or she should get frequent treats all during the visit. Fortunately, your dog does not value treats by their size (like we do) but just loves getting something tasty. The effect of a small treat is just as great as the effect of a large treat. For that reason, the main treat we use is freeze dried liver made in USDA inspected facilities from cows raised in the USA. We cut them much smaller than they are supplied so that each treat is only about 3 to 5 calories. Information about freeze dried liver treats is at the end of this article.

Why is it so important for my dog to enjoy coming for medical care?

Studies of dogs receiving veterinary care have shown that dogs who are nervous and frightened will try to hide their medical symptoms, making it much harder for us to get accurate findings during an exam. Additionally, nervous dogs have elevated heart rates, respiration and may even have an elevated temperature. Stressed pets have elevated levels of stress hormones that can actually lead to a change of blood tests results. Ill or injured pets who are scared and nervous during hospitalization will not recover as well, so if we can begin building positive experiences and trust during puppy and wellness visits, your pet will recover better if hospitalization is ever needed. One of the most important reasons that your pet will benefit from positive veterinary experiences is that when our patients trust us, they will allow us to do the things that are necessary to keep them healthy or diagnose a problem. A pet who trusts us will let us draw blood or take x-rays, for example, without sedation.

What if my pet has an allergy or an easily upset tummy?

If there is any reason that you would prefer for your dog to receive a certain type of treat, please feel free to bring them with you. We will use whatever treats you bring and thank you for bringing them. If you prefer that your pet not receive any treats at all, we will comply with your wishes. Please ask for your pet’s record to be marked “Will bring special treats” or “No treats.”

What if my dog refuses to eat treats during an exam?

Some dogs are much more eager for treats by nature than others and some dogs get too nervous to eat treats.  There are a number of ways you can help. When you bring your dog in for an exam, make sure your pet is a little hungry. Wait and feed breakfast or dinner until after their visit here. It also might help for you to bring something really special that you know your dog likes (cut up roasted chicken or very small pieces of another type of meat or whatever they like) for us to use as treats. We have a variety of treats here that we can try, but each pet has individual preferences, so bringing a treat that you know your pet likes and associates with home might help. Another way you can help your pet lose their fear of veterinary visits is to drop in for very quick “treat-only visits.” These visits usually go best when the waiting room is less busy, so if you are driving by and see that the parking lot has a low number of cars in it, stop by for a treats-only visit.

What if my pet is coming in for an anesthetic procedure or is coming because of vomiting or diarrhea?

These are two examples of times that we will not give treats. Also, we may not want a pet to eat treats before certain blood tests. We will not give treats at these times. Please feel free to speak up if a staff member offers a treat and you think it is contraindicated. Occasionally, a staff member may be so used to giving treats that they fail to realize the need to avoid treats. So speak up!

What type of liver treats do you give?

ALL The following information is copied from the manufacturer and can be found at StewartPet.com:

Stewart® Pro-Treat® Freeze Dried Liver Treats are made in the USA without additives or preservatives in a USDA inspection facility. Pro-Treat® Freeze Dried Liver maintains the aroma, full-flavor and nutritional value of 100% raw liver.

Fresh, conveniently freeze dried and diced into reward size treats, Pro-Treat® is an excellent reward and training tool. All natural Pro-Treat® has been the preferred choice of trainers for over 40 years due to its convenience and palatability. Our treats contain only one ingredient and are perfect for dogs with allergies or those who are on limited ingredient diets. We guarantee that your pet will absolutely love our treats!

Ingredients: 100% Pure Beef Liver

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Minimum Protein 50%
  • Minimum Fat 5%
  • Maximum Fiber 3%
  • Maximum Moisture 6%

Food Safety: We’ve Got your Dog’s Back

It seems like we’re frequently hearing of major pet food brands being recalled, and we can understand what a scary feeling that must be for pet owners. While we can proudly say we’ve never experienced a recall on any of our products, we want to take a minute to let you know that food recalls happen for a variety of different reasons but, here at Stewart®, we go above and beyond to provide your pet with the best nutrition and you with the peace of mind that it’s safe. All of our food and treats are made in the USA with responsibly resourced meats (no mysteries here!) in a USDA-approved human-grade facility – meaning, we could [technically] make YOUR food here if we wanted, but we’ll stick to pets.