How to get the most out of your vet

How to get the most out of your vet

Tagged in: health , Pet , puppy , treatment , vet Author: Dr Robyn Chandler

For pet owners, your relationship with your vet is a very important one. Many people either don’t engage enough with their vet, or call on them too often when there is probably no reason to worry. Here are nine tips to get the most out of your vet, written by a vet herself.


Tip #1: Listen carefully


We love to give advice on our passion – keeping pets healthy – and will gladly give you the information you need to minimise trips to the vet, and give your pet a long and happy life.


Tip #2: Follow our treatment plans


Following the vet-administered treatment is the quickest and cheapest way to get your pet back to good health. It also gives us vets a warm, glowing feeling to see you following our plans.


Tip #3: Accompany your pet


If your vet could talk to animals, they’d probably be wealthy TV celebrities who don’t regularly have to squeeze anal glands to make a living instead. We need a history to make a diagnosis and suggest a treatment plan. For this reason, it’s best that you accompany your pet on visits to the vet, rather than sending your friend, spouse, housekeeper or driver, all of whom probably aren’t as familiar with their history or condition as you are.


Tip #4: Honesty is key


An inaccurate history is unlikely to lead to an accurate diagnosis or appropriate treatment plan. If a lump has been on your dog’s tummy for years (as opposed to just popping up this week) it’ll probably result in very different diagnoses. If you’ve neglected something we can usually tell by looking at the wound, lump or animal in question, so fibbing isn’t going to help the situation. All we care about is that you’ve visited now so that we can help your pet, so giving us a truthful history helps everyone.


Tip #5: Please don’t be late

Being late for your appointment gives us less time to discuss options and treatment plans in detail, so you’re likely to leave with a more superficial understanding of your pet’s problem. It also makes our day more stressful and can mean that we have to be briefer with other clients to catch up for lost time.


Tip #6: Try not to call late


Calling us just before we close (especially if you’ve known your pet wasn’t well all day) puts quite a bit of stress on the vets and nurses who have to stay late beyond their standard 10-12 hour shift. You’re not getting the best of our brainpower at this point as we are naturally tired, hungry or probably both. We also won’t be able to send blood tests with a courier service or order drugs that your pet may need until the following day. There is a high likelihood that if your pet is really unwell we will need to refer them to an afterhours care provider for diagnostics or stabilisation, and this will cost you more than if you had called earlier in the day.


Tip #7: Don’t postpone your visits


Delaying seeking attention for health issues often makes it more difficult and expensive for us to treat. It’s also not fair on your pet if something is bothering them.


Tip #8: Avoid bringing noisy children with you


Try to avoid bringing boisterous or noisy children with you to the vet if you can. Not only do they make your pets stressed or excited (making it a lot harder for us to examine them thoroughly), but it’s also distracting for vets to have a child yelling or opening drawers and cupboards that may have sharp, pointy objects in them. It’s also likely that the kids will distract you, meaning you’re not getting the most out of the information we’re giving you.


Tip #9: Spoiling your vet


This may sound cheeky but it really works. Your vet loves to feel appreciated and will continue to go the extra mile for you and your pet if you show us a bit of love. Even just a sincere note makes all the difference.


By following these tips we’re sure you’ll keep a warm, wonderful and most importantly, informative relationship with your vet going forward. And if you don’t yet have a vet, it’s important that you get to know one sooner rather than later, in case something suddenly happens to your beloved animal. 


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