Choosing The Perfect Vet: A Guide To Finding The Best Care For Your Beloved Pet
Our pets are our best friends, confidants, and a tremendous source of comfort after a hard day. Every responsible and loving pet owner wants their pet to enjoy optimal health and longevity but sometimes that is easier said than done.
Eliciting care from a vet who is inexperienced or does not employ empathy in their practice can be harmful and ultimately disastrous for the long-term well-being of your best friend. Here’s how to choose the perfect vet whom your pet can cultivate a relationship with for years.
While you may adore a vet that is miles away, proximity matters as pets are difficult to travel with over long distances particularly if the weather is not conducive or the pet itself is large or very active. Choosing vets that have clinics nearby or at a reasonable distance can be more comfortable for your pet and can result in improved care as discomfort, infection, and pain are dealt with more swiftly.
While proximity certainly should not be the only factor you consider, it does make looking after your pet easier and more efficient although the pet owner should be careful to not compromise on credentials and experience.
The Financial Side
You want to do the best for your beloved pet but finances are a huge factor in the care you can realistically provide. Many vet clinics focus on building long-term relationships with customers so they may suggest opening a line of credit or offering loyalty discounts once a period of time has elapsed. Make a budget for your pet’s upkeep and accommodate additions like timely vaccinations, checkups, and even seasonal grooming appointments to get rid of recurrent problems like ticks.
Pleasant, Easy To Talk To, And Caring
A vet is more than just a doctor, and your ideal perfect vet needs to be someone who resonates with both people and animals and is a natural with building friendships with both. Do a lot of research before deciding on a vet and never disregard word-of-mouth recommendations or online reviews.
Find someone who has a pleasant and easygoing personality. Contrary to popular opinion, pets, especially dogs and cats are wonderfully intuitive and they will cooperate better with someone kind and empathetic. The emotional health of your beloved pet is just as if not more important than his/her physical health so always keep in mind the role your vet plays.
Being On The Same Page
Every veterinarian has their own mindset and philosophy when it comes to the treatment of pets and the methods they are willing to employ such as surgical procedures they recommend. Right off the bat, it is better if you and the vet you have chosen are on the same page. When it comes to certain methods of disease prevention and control, individual ethics come into play and they can make all the difference when you are making challenging and potentially painful decisions such as euthanasia or invasive treatment. If your pet develops cancer or any other kind of chronic disease, you need a vet who will treat your best friend with the kind of treatment that aligns with your personal beliefs and value system.
Not Too Available
While it can be harder to get appointments at clinics that are extremely busy and booked, unavailability at a moment’s notice is usually a sign that a clinic is trusted and preferred. Clinics that run very well will also be more ethical in their practices and will have access to the latest treatment knowledge, aids, machinery, and related training. You can create a schedule of appointments for your pet’s healthcare needs so you are not rushing to the clinic last minute and getting sidelined.
The Devil Is In The Details
Every vet’s clinic has a different policy regarding patient aftercare, complimentary add-ons, charges for hospitalization, and so forth. This translates into costs incurred but also sheds light on ethics and the quality of care. Before deciding on a vet for your best friend, always read between the lines and get all the information the clinic can provide about how they handle emergency scenarios and what their aftercare entails.
Look For Specialization
Vets often go into various areas of specialization such as geriatrics (care and treatment of older pets), ophthalmology (related to eyes), or even orthopedics. Certain clinics such as Polaris Vet have these various specialists under one roof to treat different problems as and when they arise.
If you have a dog with a certain condition (such as a pet suffering from bone loss or arthritis) it is usually wise to choose a specialist vet to take care of them as they will have a greater understanding of specific treatment options. Certain vets may also specialize in certain types of animals such as felines, dogs, reptiles, rodents, or birds.
Take A Tour
The marketing and online portfolio is all well and good but nothing is a substitute for taking a proper tour of the premises and seeing the standards of operation, cleanliness, and the treatment methods available.
Make a note of various factors such as hygiene protocols, the availability of the latest machinery, and the administrative mechanisms and whether pets look loved and cared for instead of distressed. Certain clinics may have a harsh way of handling pets or may not keep them adequately segregated which can create stress and problems.
The way the clinic handles overnight patients (adjustment of shifts and on-call specialists) is imperative in case your pet ever has to spend the night or be on observation status for a few days. As the pet owner, you need to be sure that someone will be keeping tabs on his/her condition consistently with a great deal of responsibility.
The availability of diagnostic testing on-site is of utmost importance as it means a quick diagnosis and a head start on treatment which will not be the case if the tests have to be referred to an independent lab.