Revolutionary Veterinary Care

Scaredy cats and fraidy dogs no more! Have you ever heard of the Fear Free movement in veterinary practices? The Fear Free movement promotes positive veterinary visit experiences for our pets (reducing any associated stress and anxiety that may come with a visit), to encourage better healthcare. It’s a set of practices, methods, and tools that help to calm our veterinary patients and create a low-stress environment for their care.

After all, a peaceful, pawsitive visit to the vet leads to a happier, healthier pet (and parents, too!). 

The Fear Free movement was in large part, based on the wonderful work of some acclaimed animal behaviourists, trainers, and veterinarians. And what's not to love?  Like you, we love pets like family, and want what is best for them. Pets not only need veterinary professionals to look after their physical well being, but their emotional well-being too – they go paw-in-paw with one another.


How We Incorporate Fear Free Into Our Practice


We Meet Your Pet Halfway

For pets who are especially nervous, we can examine them right in the waiting room - laps can work wonderfully! Our staff is trained to use low voices and can spend time with the patient on the floor before examination. Our staff is trained and experienced with Gentle Handling techniques, so your pet will be interacted with in a way that promotes confidence and trust in our team. 


We Reward with veterinary-approved treats (Ok, and sometimes PB!)

We give your pets their favourite treats or toys during their visits to make the visit a pawsitive experience.


Cat Burritos

This one is just fun to say! But really, swaddling a pet when they are fearful can be very comforting and can ease the nervous system and anxious reactions. Every pet deserves a warm, soft blanket in times of need!

On top of all this, we play relaxing music in our waiting area, and greet every patient with a smile! Depending on the comfort level of the pet, every Sunrise visit seems to end in a snuggle, too. 

But a fear free practice doesn't end here - we also educate our families on how to best prepare their BFF for visits with us - be sure to ask us. Many choose to pop in when they’re in the neighbourhood for a treat - which we greatly encourage - and we might even ask to snap a photo for our Facebook page!

Tips for Bringing Your Cat to Sunrise Vet Clinic:

  • If possible, purchase a cat carrier that opens from the top and/or has an easily removable top. This way, we can examine your kitty right in the carrier, if need be. Make it a priority to make the carrier a happy - and not a scary - place. This will help getting into it a much gentler process for both of you. 
  • When driving make sure the carrier is flat. You may use towels to make sure it does not slip or tilt.
  • Cover the carrier to reduce stimuli.
  • Play calming classical music to decrease anxiety.
  • Speak in a low calm voice. Despite having good intentions, If you sound anxious (often our voices get high-pitched when we're trying to comfort an animal), this can rub off on them! 
  • When you arrive, carry the carrier with both hands like you are cradling a present. 

Bringing Your Dog to Sunrise Vet Clinic:

  • Condition them early to enjoy car rides! You can do this by starting with short drives around the neighbourhood - and yes, to our parking lot! Feed them treats and make it a positive experience. Add more and more time as they get used to it. If ever anxious, stop and try again another day. When they're more comfortable in the car, bring them in to say hello from time to time - and for more treats!
  • On the day of the visit, feed a small meal in the morning. If they are hungry, your dog will respond better to food rewards during the vet visit.
  • Bring their favourite comfort item, toy, or treats with them to their appointment.
  • During the car ride try some calming classical music. It is said to soothe even a dog’s nerves.
  • Speak in a low, comforting voice. 
  • If your dog is more comfortable in the waiting room, please let us know.  The doctor can sometimes exam him/her out there! 
  • Talk with your vet about anxious behaviours.