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Could Your Dog Get A Wound Treated With Staples Without Sedation? How Cooperative Care Can Save You THOUSANDS of Dollars Over The Lifetime of Your Dog.

Service dogs, our steadfast companions in daily life, often find themselves at an increased risk of injuries due to the demanding nature of their jobs. As a service dog owner, I recently learned from my vet that my dogs are among the few in our county whose veterinary care is easily manageable. For example Riva was slightly injured on her ear by another dog in the household and in order for it to heal properly it required two staples.  My vet was able to do this small procedure without even sedating her due to the cooperative care techniques I use with all my dogs in my own household. This revelation prompted me to explore the unique challenges faced by service dogs, the heightened risk of injuries, and the role of cooperative care training in not only lowering vet bills but also reducing stress for both dogs and their owners.

Rivas Ear With Staples

Service dogs undergo intensive training to assist individuals with disabilities, performing a range of tasks from guiding the visually impaired to detecting changes in blood sugar levels. Their job involves navigating busy streets, responding to emergencies, and offering constant support to their handlers. Unfortunately, the very tasks that make them indispensable also expose them to a higher likelihood of injuries compared to regular pets.

The occupational hazards faced by service dogs include strains, sprains, abrasions, fractures, and stress-related illnesses. The physical demands of their work, combined with the need for constant vigilance, contribute to their vulnerability. These injuries not only impact the well-being of the service dogs but also pose emotional challenges for their owners who rely on them for crucial support.

Cooperative care training emerges as a transformative approach to address the increased susceptibility of service dogs to injuries. This training focuses on building trust and cooperation between the dog and its handler, particularly during routine care procedures. It involves teaching dogs to willingly participate in grooming, medical examinations, and minor treatments, fostering a positive and cooperative relationship.

Benefits of Cooperative Care Training:

  1. Early Detection of Health Issues: Cooperative care training empowers handlers to regularly assess their service dogs for signs of discomfort or abnormalities. Early detection allows for prompt intervention, preventing minor issues from escalating into more severe injuries that could result in higher veterinary costs.
  2. Stress Reduction for Dogs: Traditional veterinary procedures can be stressful for dogs, potentially exacerbating their injuries or illnesses. Cooperative care training helps desensitize service dogs to various handling and medical procedures, minimizing stress during routine veterinary visits.
  3. Reduced Financial Burden: Investing in cooperative care training proves to be a wise financial decision. By actively participating in their service dogs’ care routines, handlers contribute to the overall well-being of their canine companions, lowering the likelihood of injuries and associated vet bills.

As we navigate the unique challenges faced by service dogs, it becomes evident that their well-being is paramount. Cooperative care training not only addresses the heightened risk of injuries but also contributes to a positive and cooperative relationship between service dogs and their handlers. In my personal experience, being among the few in my county with a dog that vets can safely handle has reinforced the importance of proactive care. By embracing cooperative care practices, we can ensure that our service dogs thrive in their vital roles, providing unwavering support to those who depend on them, while also easing the burden on both the dogs and their owners.

If you would like to watch a free video about some basic cooperative care techniques you can start using with your dog you can view Kikopups free video here.


Matilda is a trained POTS alert dog. She is a Labradoodle from our first Imprinted Puppy Puppy Litter. Find out how you can get a puppy like her to train for your child.