Are you looking for the “perfect” vet? Or you want a regular vet that is right for you and your pet? When most pet owners need a vet, they get their recommendation from Google search results by searching for “Vets near me” and run to the first name they see.
Finding the right vet has proven to be a daunting task. Millions of people have lost hundreds of Dollars to bad veterinarians. While others depend on “perfect” veterinarian with overpriced services.
There a lot of things you need to consider when choosing a vet. Do you look for quality or budget? How do you know that your vet is the right person for your pet?
Choosing a good vet is not as easy as it seems. If you just adopted a pet, you moved to another city or you’re thinking of changing vets, here is a personal checklist I generated for my aunt in France and it worked for her.
In this article, I’m going to give you a step by step guide that will help you choose the right veterinarian for your pet.
1. Who’s The Patient?
One of the best decisions you can make as a good pet owner is finding your pet a good veterinarian. And when looking for a good veterinarian near you, you must first have your pet in mind.
Is your vet good with dogs, cats, birds, lizards or cattle? What makes him qualifies to administer medication to your little pooch? Ask him a question and see if the answers to the questions are rational or logical. This plays a big part in choosing the right vet for your dog.
2. Who’s the Vet?
A degree in veterinary medicine doesn’t make him/her a good vet. Like regular doctors & surgeons for humans, some veterinarians specialize in various fields “colleges”. When choosing a good vet, you should always put this into consideration.
For example, if you want to treat flea and tick infection on dogs, you typically visit a veterinarian that specializes in skin infections and treatment [dermatologists]. There are also other fields like veterinary dermatologists like neurologists, internists, ophthalmologists, allergists, surgeons…
Some veterinarians specialize in small animals, exotic pets, livestock, dogs or cats. Be sure to know where your vets specialize in before you make him your go-to guy.
3. How Good Is He With Pet?
Let’s be sincere, If they were two vets available in your city, The Incredible Dr. Pol and The Grand Dr. Lisa Anderson. I’m pretty sure a lot of people would prefer Dr. Pol over me. The guy is a reality TV superstar from Nat Geo Wild for God’s sake.
This is how it is everywhere. A lot of vets spend time building trust and reputation. You’ve seen Dr. Pol work and you know that he’s pretty good with both pets, animals, and livestock. He has over 19,000 clients, performed close to 10,000 successful surgeries and has also been a vet half of his life. Of course, you can trust him with the life of your pet.
I’m not saying that you should not try out newbies like me. You should, as soon as you know we are qualified. For new veterinarians like me, there are millions of ways to get our name out there and build trust other than starring a reality tv show, blog or website. One of my personal favorites is using the power of social media.
You can easily get the word out using your social handles. Shoot live videos of your work. How you removed a mop from the stomach of a bulldog or how you saved a horse that passed out in labor… Post the extra-ordinary and you are sure to get eyes looking your way.
4. What’s Your Budget?
Money is another factor that you must consider when choosing a vet. I was surprised when I saw the bills and receipts of veterinarians in Beverly hill. This was nearly 4 times was being charged in Florida.
To be sincere, it was a little overpriced. Yea, your little pooch deserves that extra love but when a vet tries to turn your love into a was to get rich scheme, you have to back off and look for one that offers the same services for a better price.
Besides it no news that most dog trainers and vets offer shitty services with outrageous prices. Don’t be fooled by thinking quality comes at a high-price. You can get quality pet treatment on a small budget.
5. Meet Other Vets
Another way to find a good vet near you is by asking other vets for recommendations. You can ask for help from other vets. You can call your vet and ask questions or get advice. Your veterinarian can also recommend a vet close to you that he feels can do the job. You can also ask for recommendations from vets in the animal clinic.
6. Do a Quality Check
Book an Appointment and run a quality check while you are there. When you go you an appointment, you should look for signs that would allow knowing if this is the right place for your pet or not. The nature of their operation and code of conduct can easily help you tell if they are good veterinarians or not.
Here are a few things you should look out for on your first appointment to an animal clinic:
- How co-ordinated are staff members? You should first check out things like the number of people working in the clinic and their roles like veterinarians, receptionists, vet tech, and other administrative workers. If it’s not a big organization, but a small one with 2-5 staff, check how co-ordinated they are and do they have essential equipment like scale, X-ray, emergency vehicle, other states of the art gadget and a standard laboratory.
- How busy are they? Whey you walk into an animal clinic on a Saturday afternoon and see a lot of patients with their pets, this is usually a good sign that you are in the right place.
- How far is the place? Can you easily rush them when there’s an emergency? Distance also plays a major part when choosing a veterinarian. The closer, the better.
- How clean is the place? Yea sure, you are bound to see strands of hair on the floor but anything out of the usual is off. The surgery room and storage ought to be squeaky clean. You should check if the place is clean, spacious, and hygienic to bring your pet to.
Once you see how the veterinarian or the animal clinic run their business after 3 visits, you should be able to know whether this is the right place for your dog or not.
7. Ask For Recommendation
Word of the mouth and recommendation is another perfect way to find a good vet in your area. Especially if you recently moved out to your new place. This is way better than “Veterinary near me”.
You can ask your new neighbors or friends who also have pets to recommend a good vet to you. If this proves to be unsuccessful, you can contact us or other websites that love dogs like over, dog time, the country vet, PetMD and other pet shelters, grooming salon, and pet boarding centers near you, they will be glad to help.
You can also get a recommendation from professional bodies like the American Animal Hospital Association. If there is a good vet near you, they’d know. Most vets and aminal hospitals accredited by the AAHA offer standard pet care and treatment. So instead of Googling “Vets near me”, try “Vets accredited by AAHA near me”. You can also read reviews dropped on by customers on their Google business page.
8. Check Their Website
Every good veterinarian should have a website. A business card and flyer is just not enough. Before you take your pet to see the veterinarian, try to visit his website or blog, so you can get foresight on what to expect.
Although some experienced veterinarians have ugly looking sites that are never updated, you can find key information like his services, years of experiences, successes & awards, employees, and rates.
If your vet doesn’t have a website, it doesn’t mean that he is a terrible veterinarian, maybe he’s just starting or knows nothing about WordPress or CMS. You can also check out his business profile on his Facebook page, Instagram, Twitter or Linked In.
9. Follow your gut
Your veterinarian is going to be a problem-solver and an important character when the health your dog is treated. You must trust him or her and feel comfortable asking questions. When choosing a vet, you have to trust your guts sometimes. The AAHA recommends that you ask yourself these questions after your first appointment with a new veterinarian:
• Do you feel at ease with this vet?
• Did you ask enough questions?
• Did he/she answer all your questions and explain things in a way you understood?
You should be comfortable when a veterinarian is with your pet. If something seems off whether with his behavior or method of application, trust your instincts and look for a new doctor.
10. Be A Good Client
If you want a good vet, you should also be a good client or customer. Make sure that you are on your best behavior when you are around your veterinarian. You should visit and leave the animal clinic feeling positive and interacting warmly with the doctors and other staff members. Once you start behaving this way, you will build a strong relationship with them and have a good rapport with the veterinarian.
Your relationship with the veterinarians should be a two-sided collaboration since you both want the best for your pet. Communication is key when it comes to receiving quality vet care. Be calm even when your pet is in pain and tell the vet your dog is hurts, his medical history, allergies, and other symptoms so he can do his work. The vet would listen carefully and know what to do.
By working together, you and the veterinarian can solve any health issue confronting your pet. Other ways that you can be a good client are:
- Being on time for appointments.
- Stay calm and be patients, vets have temper also.
- Ask questions if you have any.
Choosing a good vet is a smart move if you really love your dog. Try to spend enough time finding one whose profile fits you best. It’s not just about finding a well-educated veterinarian but one that cares about your furry little baby. Are you still having problem finding a good vet, send us an email and we’ll help you find one for free!