How You Can Help Your Dog with Blood Draws

Many routine tests require us to draw blood from your pet in order to run. While there are some dogs who have no qualms with this, there are others who can get a little nervous. Here are some tips to help your pup get more comfortable at home!

  • Teach your dog to offer his paw. This will be easy to do if they already know “shake” or “high five.”
  • When you bring your dog in for an appointment, have the veterinarian or technician show you how to hold their leg for a blood draw and where the blood will be taken.
    • At home, practice this hold and use a little water to simulate the sensation of the alcohol that is used for the blood draw.
    • To help prepare your pup for the prick of the needle, use a toothpick or paper clip to softly tap the area where the blood will be drawn.
  • During these practice sessions, give your dog high-reward treats such as cheese, hotdogs or peanut butter.
  • Practice this about once a week or more frequently if your pet needs more regular blood draws.
    • Try to practice this in the same place every time, so your dog knows what is going to happen there.

Our goal at Blum is to make all visits as stress-free and anxiety-free as possible. Anything you can do at home to help us achieve this goal is appreciated!

Written for Blum Animal Hospital by Jackie Sheppard.