The fun part of my job is not only meeting many interesting people from various backgrounds but also their pets. Each pet has its own personality and part of my job is knowing how to handle each pet differently according to which personality traits they display. This helps the pets and their owners gain trust in me and makes my job easier! This article is devoted to all the pets I have known and come to love not only during the course of my career, but in my entire life.
These are some of the dogs' personality traits I have seen in my office. Your dog may exhibit more than one of these personality types and they may also exhibit these traits only in front of me! Overall, however, the personality types fit each dog whether in my office or at home.
1. The Puppy - This dog is happy and young at heart no matter what their age. Breeds that fit well into this category would be the Labrador Retriever and the Golden Retriever. This type greets me with a happy pant and usually a jump or two, and tail-wagging throughout the entire exam. I love this type of dog but sometimes it takes more than one person to hold them still for the exam because they are so wiggly!
What is your dog’s personality type?
2. The Protector - This dog will protect their owners no matter what. The breeds we see that fit into this category are the Chihuahua and the Pomeranian. These dogs are loyal solely to their owner. In order to examine these dogs without losing a finger we often use a soft breathable muzzle and take them away from their owners. Many of these dogs quiet down once they realize their owners are no longer there to protect.
3. The Socialite - This is also another happy dog that feels the need to say hello to every animal and person in the office. In the exam room they constantly watch the doors to see who will come in to say hello. One special Border Collie named Buddy that I see in my office fits into this category well. He is always happy to see everyone!
4. The Companion - This dog is a faithful friend to their owner and they are usually very cooperative for whatever needs to be done to them. Breeds in this category include Shih Tzus and Shelties. They are sometimes on the nervous side but calm down quickly when I talk to them and pet them in a non-assertive manner.
5. The Phobic - This dog is fearful no matter what we do to them. They tremble the minute they turn into our driveway. Many times these are rescue dogs that have had an abusive past. They cower in fear when I enter the room and try to hide in the corner or under a chair. The best way to calm this dog is to have the owners bring the dog back on a regular basis just to say hello and get treats from us. This way they are having more positive experiences with us than negative experiences and I have seen a significant improvement when this is accomplished. I usually examine these guys on the floor making sure not to tower above them or corner them. All the while I talk to them in a very calming and reassuring way with the owner right there. Sometimes we do have to be careful with this type because they may act aggressively out of fear.
6. The Investigator - This dog usually has its nose into everything the minute it enters our office. They sniff every corner of our office to see who has been there. They jump up on our counter to search for treats that may have been given to them before. Breeds that fit in well to this category are the hound breeds - especially the Beagles with their sniffers!
7. The Aggressor - This type of dog may come directly over to me when I enter the room. They may jump on me immediately to show their dominance or just stare directly into my eyes with a gaze of steel. They may give me a low growl, a raised lip or no warning at all. The only way to examine this dog is with a muzzle and with the owner. I usually put them on the table so they don't feel threatened by me standing over them and I do not look directly into their eyes. Breeds that may fit into this category are the Rottweiler, the Pit Bull and any unneutered male dog. Owners have to sometimes stand back and let us do our job because this dog may act aggressively even to their owners when they feel threatened.
8. The Class Clown - We cannot help but laugh at this dog when it comes into our exam room. Breeds that fit well into this category include the Old English Bulldog and the Pug. They are usually very happy and very entertaining. They have mega-personality and look at you with that inquisitive look seeming to understand almost every word you speak to them. They also love their toys and these are usually the dogs that eat their toys and require surgery. We love these breeds, however, and they make our day fun!
I will discuss the various cat personalities in one of my next articles, so stay tuned! Being a veterinarian would be extremely boring if I did not see so many different people and pets in the course of a day. A good veterinarian is one who puts the people and their pets at ease because they understand the pet and they know how to handle each individual animal. If this is accomplished, it makes the visit so much more enjoyable for everyone!
If you have any questions about any one of my articles or if there is a topic that you would like me to discuss, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our website at dunkirkanimalclinic.com and like us on Facebook.
Dr. Rebekah R Frost
Dunkirk Animal Clinic
264 Lake Shore Dr W
Dunkirk, NY 14048