All dogs, even the most aggressive ones, need regular vet care to keep them in good health. However, taking an aggressive dog to the vet can pose some risks, both to you as the owner and to the veterinary clinic staff. This does not mean you should not bring the dog to the vet, but it does mean you need to take a few extra steps and precautions when you do so.
Use a Muzzle
Although muzzling an aggressive dog can sometimes cause bigger problems in the long run, muzzling them for a short time when they need to see the vet is simply a smart precaution to take. You can find muzzles that are just tight enough to keep the dog from opening its mouth to bite, yet loose enough to let the dog move its jaw and open it a tiny bit. This will prevent you and others from being bitten without causing too much discomfort for the dog.
Call the Office From Your Car
When you arrive at the vet's office, remain in your car and call the front desk. They may send a vet tech or assistant out to help you bring the dog inside safely. This also gives them a chance to clear any other dogs or cats out of the waiting area so that you and your dog can come through. The staff may ask you to wait in your car until the vet and the exam room are ready. This way, you do not have to spend time trying to control your dog in the waiting area.
Let the Techs Handle Your Dog During the Exam
Tell any staff members who handle your dog that it can be aggressive. In response, when it comes time for the vet to examine your dog, the vet techs may ask to hold or restrain your dog. Even though the dog does not know them as well as they know you, the veterinary staff is trained to hold and restrain aggressive animals in a way that is safe for them and for the dog. You can stand right beside your dog to keep it calm and comfortable, but let the more experienced hands do the work of restraining them.
Nobody wants to be bitten by an aggressive dog at the vet's office. As long as you follow the tips above, everyone should be as safe as possible.