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Long Conversation with Dr. Marty Becker Regarding Fear Free


For some time, I’ve had the honor to host the Fear Free podcasts. I sought out to do one podcast that I hadn’t before done. It’s right HERE with Dr. Marty Becker the guy who created Fear Free in the first place.

First a word about Fear Free

One day maybe I’ll interview myself for the podcast, and talk about how and why Fear Free resonated with me from day one. I’ve often talked about how many pets actually feel as if they’re going to die in the car or before that even, when the carrier comes out to get to the vet office…..Let alone the terror they feel at the veterinary office. And it’s all avoidable.

If the pet is hating (that’s not even a strong enough word) the veterinary visit, imagine how badly the veterinary professionals feels and also how badly you feel. When your fur baby is “man handled” to just get the job done, you shouldn’t return to that veterinarian.  Fear Free offers a better alternative for pets, and a safer one for veterinary professionals. Also Fear Free is so so so so perfectly aligned with kitten socialization classes and enrichment, topics I’ve been babbling about for years.

A word about Dr. Mary Becker

I’ve known Dr. Becker for around 25 years now. He is like no one else I have ever met. He is a force of nature who keeps going. Just as the pets’ fear, anxiety and stress intensifies as each bad experience builds in the amygdala of their brains, Becker’s determination to make Fear Free the new standard intensifies. The more he has heard “no,” the more determined he has become. Today Fear Free has leaped way beyond expectations with the number of veterinary processionals participating. And way beyond veterinary medicine, as there are Fear Free dog trainers, and will soon be Fear Free certified groomers and animals shelters also certified. Some vet schools are Fear Free with more to come.

How can one man change the world? How can I not admire that? Fear Free began with Dr. Becker as a one man band, and today an entire parade is following – thousands. And I am proud to be an early adopter and one of the loudest cheerleaders on the planet for Fear Free.  And what a parade, Dr. Jane Goodall just told me that Fear Free sounds like a good idea, Dr. Temple Grandin is an advisor, not notch veterinary professionals from around the globe are on his advisory board, including the revered Dr. Stephen Ettinger and nearly all of the veterinary behaviorists, the total list of supporters is far too long to print. Deans of veterinary schools are with Dr. Becker. Increasingly, so is the world. Clearly the guy is after world domination. And all this only to benefit our pets, and ultimately farm animals, zoo animals, and more.

Incidentally, Dr. Becker says that of all the many books he’s written, he’s most proud of his most recent, “From Fearful to Fear Free: A Positive Program to Free Your Dog from Anxiety, Fears and Phobias” (also authored by veterinary behaviorists Dr. Lisa Rodasta and Dr. Wailiani Sung as well as dog trainer/behavior consultant Mikkel Becker.

Fear Free Happy Homes

I also love the Fear Free Happy Homes site for all the content – gobs of it, which pet owners can learn. I know many think, “Well, I know it all, I’ve had pets my entire life.” I can assure you, no one knows it all. And can also assure you that on the web, there is as much misinformation about pets as there is on target information. Fake pet news is everywhere. And there are good deals on products available for pet caretakers on the site too.







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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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