When you find the perfect dog, they quickly become one of the most important parts of your life. You will do anything to make sure they are happy and healthy. The same thought and care you put into finding the pet of your dreams you should put into finding the vet of your dreams.
Your veterinarian will become a crucial part of you and your dog’s life, so you should be thoughtful about the vet you choose to take care of your newest addition. It may seem overwhelming, to establish this new relationship, but Pets a Go Go has a few tips to help you find the right vet.
Don’t wait to find a pet to find a vet. Choosing to get a dog is a big decision! When you bring home the newest addition to your family, be prepared for things to get turned upside down with training and finding the right routine. That’s why it is important to do research and ideally meet with your prospective vet before you bring home your pet. A vet can even help you identify a breed that matches your lifestyle.
Ask around. When searching for your vet, ask friends and neighbors with pets about their vet and if they recommend them. This is especially helpful if their pet is similar to yours. When asking your friends about their vet experience, make sure you have a specific list of questions and concerns. Word of mouth is a great way to learn about vets in your area and can be more reliable than reviews online. If your dog is purebred, the breed club or rescues can be a great source as well, matching you with a vet who is familiar with the needs of that particular breed.
Look around the waiting room. A crowded waiting room may seem like a nightmare at first, but if the waiting room at the veterinary practice you are considering is crowded, this can be a very good sign. This indicates that they have loyal patients who trust the staff, and when you’re looking around, see what other animals are there. If there are dogs that match your breed or other characteristics of your pet, this could be a good fit for you. When you’re in the waiting room also keep an eye out for any information that your vet is certified to practice and follows proper protocols. If you are unsure, you can call the practice and ask about their license or contact your state board of veterinary medicine for more information.
Convenient doesn’t always mean comfortable. When looking for a vet, making sure they are nearby is important not only for convenience but also just in case of an emergency. Dr. Kevin Kelley, DVM, emergency medicine veterinarian at BluePearl Pet Hospital in Clearwater, Florida says you should stay within five miles of your vet. But that convenience is not as important as you feeling comfortable talking with your vet, asking questions, and creating a partnership for the wellbeing of your dog. If you don’t feel comfortable calling to ask questions or making appointments with your vet, then you may want to widen that to 10 or 15 miles to find a vet that feels right to you.
Check off your checklist. Just as you made a list of what you are looking for when asking your friends about their vets, you should also make a list of priorities when you first visit your vet. Important factors to consider include payment plans if they take your pet insurance, the hours of operation and if their medical practices match your values. There may be parts of your checklist you are flexible on and some non-negotiables. Making this list will help you feel less overwhelmed during your vet search.
Choosing a new vet can be scary, but with the right research and preparation, the search can help you learn a lot about your dog’s needs and your own values. The same thought you put into choosing a doctor for your family should be put into choosing a vet and with the help of these tips, Pets A Go Go hopes you find a vet that makes you and your furbaby feel safe.