Thursday, November 4, 2010

Panic is not the best solution...

Wooooow! Public Holidays messed up my blogging schedule!

Sooooo....Yesterday, got a phone call from a friend whose dog got trapped in the metallic structures of his gate. The animal was found stuck there with minor lacerations and during the manipulations he bit their Grandma (needed stitches at the hospital)
Whilst, the owner was panicking and talking to me on the phone, I could hear the incessant whining of the doggy in the background. That animal was visibly in psychological distress. A few rapid questions revealed that the dog is walking ok but very aggressive.
What to do in such cases?
Call the vet for a house visit?
Insist in trying to handle the animal for transport to the vet?
All these are panic moves and are of no good to the animal...nor to the owner.
If a rapid assessment reveals no major life-threatening'd rather leave the animal to calm down. Any attempt to handle an animal in such a state will just worsen his reactions and be dangerous to you (ask Grandma!)
So phone your vet, describe the situation calmly to him (remember he is not seeing the be precise) and keep him regularly(1 hr intervals) updated about your animal's status.
Have you ever heard that "Dogs smell your fear/panic" and react to that? Well that is true...they do not smell the fear per se but when we panic and are afraid our body releases Adrenaline...and that goes in our sweat. This is easily picked up by the dog's nose and this can cause further distress to him.
Just remember one thing...your dog is part of a "pack"; if you are the leader of the pack showing fear and panic and swamping the dog's olfactory detectors with Adrenaline is of no help in calming him...if, on the other hand, he is the leader, he will aggress any other individual who comes close when he feels vulnerable.
Panic is never the best solution...more so if you are the owner of a dog and you want to help him.
What happened next? As soon as I understood that the dog was not in emergency situation, I calmed to the owner and asked him to phone me back in 1 hr.I got a text today telling me that the dog was fine and just has minor cuts...
Have still to find out how Grandma is doing!

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