fear free nail trim

The Fear Free mission is to alleviate fear, anxiety, and stress in pets by inspiring and educating the people who care for them.

Does your pet hate coming to the vet?

Stressful veterinary visits are problematic for pets, pet owners, and veterinary healthcare team members. Studies have shown that up to 75% of pets coming into a veterinary clinic experience stress, so your pet is likely in the majority. Is your dog nervous when you turn the corner heading to our clinic? Does your cat fight getting into the carrier and cry in the car? Stress isn’t good for our pets and can make existing conditions worse, cause behavioral problems, and delay healing. That’s why we’ve embraced a certification program, called Fear Free, that helps to make visits to the veterinarian something pets and their owners can both look forward to.

fear free vaccination

sometimes pets are more comfortable outside

Animal Care Clinic can make veterinary visits easier!

We’ve always worked hard to provide the best care for your pets. Now, we know there are ways to make your pet’s healthcare even better. We’re proud that our team members are committed to looking after both your pets physical and emotional well-being. All of our veterinarians at Animal Care Clinic are proud to be Fear Free certified and our entire team goes through extensive training to create a calm and welcoming environment, including how to recognize when a pet is fearful or anxious and need a more gentle approach.

The things we do to make your pet’s experience positive include offering treats, non-slip pads, allowing cats to stay in their carriers or dogs in their family’s lap, calming pheromone use throughout the hospital, pre-visit medications when needed, separate cat and dog areas, and modifications in our handling techniques. We think you and your pets will appreciate our fear free approach.

fear free anal gland expression

fear free puppy handling

Fear Free in Action

  • The number one way to change the experience of pets in a veterinary hospital is to educate staff on fear free animal handling, and we’ve done that. This kind of training makes all the difference for a scared or stressed pet who comes into the vet expecting rough and brisk handling. Kind hands, calm voices, and smiling faces goes a long way.
  • An animal hospital, much like a human hospital, can seem like a cold, unwelcoming, sterile place. We employ options like grip pads to keep pets from slipping on exam tables or scales, which can be scary for dogs and cats. We also use breed specific pheromones in all areas of the hospital to help naturally calm your pet.
  • Treats Treats Treats! It’s a good idea to bring your pet in hungry to appointments as enjoying treats teaches them that coming to the vet can be a positive experience. We use a variety of treat options which can include soft and crunchy treats, canned food, cheese, churu, or peanut butter. Our staff will also document which treats your pet prefers so we’ll have them ready at their next visit.  
  • Despite all of our fear-free efforts, sometimes pets just won’t accept our care. If that nail trim is still scary despite light handling, soothing tones, and lots of treats, then maybe it won’t get done today. We will not man-handle your pets to get the job done, it breaks our hearts and your pet’s heart too. So if the blood draw, nail trim, or physical exam isn’t going well, our doctors may recommend medications that can be given a few hours before the next visit to help calm and relieve some of their anxiety, making them more comfortable.

fear free anal post op care


To learn more about how fear free can help your pets lead their happiest, healthiest, and fullest lives, click the links below for content reviewed and vetted by board-certified veterinary behaviorists. 

By partnering together, we can help set your pet up for success even before they arrive at the clinic. You want what’s best for your pets, and so do we. As pet owners and animal lovers ourselves, we want to help you give your pets happy, healthy, full lives by providing all the expert-reviewed tips and tricks you need in one convenient place. Visit Fear Free Happy Homes for resources on

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