7 Questions to Ask a Vet Before You Take Your Pet

Have you ever gone to one burger shop and gotten the best burger of your life? Then you go to another shop with the same expectations only to receive mediocre service, a dirty atmosphere, and a sub-par sandwich. That is, unfortunately, how business works. You don't know until you've tried a place whether they we're worth your time and money. The same goes for choosing a veterinarian.

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Of course there are reviews that you can read and advertisements you can watch. But have you ever been deceived? I have. There is no way to be fool-proof in choosing a vet, but one great way to avoid surprises is to call and ask important questions before they even get you in the door with your credit card out. What questions should you ask? Well, I'm glad you asked!

    1. What type of equipment do you have and how modern is it?

 

They may want to know which specific equipment you want to know about. If they do, these are the machines to focus on:

 

    • Blood Pressure Equipment If a dog has high blood pressure, it could lead to a stroke or blindness, especially for dogs that already have hormonal disorders or kidney disease. A very sick dog or a dog under anesthesia can have extremely low blood pressure, which is also very dangerous. Offices need a way to monitor this.

 

    • PCV Centrifuge If a dog is anemic or has lost a lot of blood, a PCV Centrifuge will measure your pets red blood cell level.

 

    • Pulse Oximeter If a dog is under anesthesia, has pneumonia, heart failure, or other issues that are making breathing problematic, a pulse oximeter will monitor the oxygen level.

 

    1. Do you refer patients to specialists?

If they say no because they are qualified to take care of everything in their office, you might be impressed at first. But if the practice does not have a large group of board certified specialists, then you need to be careful not to become a victim of egotistical veterinarian that would rather keep all the business than to give his/her patients the best possible treatment, even if it's at a different practice. A good veterinarian will know his/her limits and will be ethical enough to admit that one person cannot possibly know everything. Having a veterinarian that specializes in an area that is causing your pet distress is much better than having a vet with limited knowledge in the subject take a guess at what the best option is.

    1. What type of anesthesia is used?

Isoflurane and Sevoflurane are both modern anesthetics. Halothane is a gas anesthetic that is not as modern or as safe. Find out which anesthetics are used and research them.

    1. How are pets monitored during anesthesia?

While patients are under anesthesia, blood pressure, oxygen level, and heart rhythms can and should be monitored the entire time.

    1. How are patients monitored overnight?

If they arent, I wouldn't be comfortable there. Even if someone occasionally stops in throughout the night to administer treatments, I would not feel safe. I would only be okay with a couple of veterinary technicians or vets monitoring and giving treatments throughout the entire night.

    1. Do you have licensed and experienced veterinary technicians?

This is helpful but not absolutely necessary. The benefit is that instead of having only the doctor there to answer questions or give helpful information, you will also have others who are professionally trained in animal health. This will probably help the vet have more time with patients. A vet assistant is only trained on the job and will do more office work and will tend to general pet needs, like possibly restraining a scared or excitable dog.

    1. Are you AAHA Accredited?

The AAHA is the American Animal Hospital Association. Veterinarians that meet very strict standards can be accredited. This provides patients with a promise that the vet and the practice have met benchmarks in a number of areas. According to aahanet.org, they must provide high quality care for patients and provide excellent client service. During evaluations, 46 mandatory standards must be met and 900 other standards of care are addressed. Some standards address anesthesia, dentistry, pain management, and emergency care. Not only do they provide accreditation to general practices, there is also specialty accreditation, too.

Again, this isn't fool-proof, but you will get a closer look at the practice after having these questions answered rather than reading a few reviews. The next step is scheduling your appointment and checking it out in person (or in dog). Check back for 8 Reasons to Run from Your Vet which will tell you what to watch out for during your first visit. And always remember, if you're not satisfied with the care you receive, the amount of time you're given, or anything else, you owe it to your dog to find a vet that will give you and your dog what is needed.

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Posted in Internet Post Date 02/06/2021


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