Tough Questions to Ask Your Vet
Having a pet is not just all fun and games! It requires effort in taking responsibility. And going to the vet is just part of it. In fact, it’s a major part of it. Especially for pet lovers with no prior experience of owning a dog, the vet is the first go-to. A proper consultation with the vet is crucial in getting to know what you should or shouldn’t do. After all, they are trained professionals!
Sure, there is always Dr. Google that you can always go to for free. But nothing beats an actually trained vet for proper diagnosis! Google helps with giving you a general idea or knowledge. But it is always better to find a reliable vet for specific details that are crucial in ensuring your dog’s health.
What are some signs of a bad vet?
With these said, finding a good veterinarian is equally as important. Obviously, a vet that is filled with red flags isn’t a good place to seek out for advice or check-ups.
Here are some red flags to look out for in vet clinics:
- Vet constantly hard sells unnecessary products
- Dirty, disorganized or smells bad
- Poor communication
- Outdated medicines or knowledge
- You or your pet feel uncomfortable
These are the main factors you should look out for when visiting a veterinary clinic. In the end of the day, you know your pet best, and you hold the power to make the right decisions! If you have second doubts on a vet, you can always find another one to make sure your pup is treated well. If this is your first time especially, don’t hesitate to leave if you feel uncomfortable.
What are some questions you should ask?
Now that you know what to look out for, and you have found the potential vet, it's time to ask questions! Not sure what's the right questions? Here are some of the questions you should ask.
1. Veterinarian Access and Care
You should always ask for the usual working hours as well as emergency access. Knowing when the vet operates is crucial, especially in times of emergency when your dog requires immediate medical attention. Asking for how their in-house overnight care looks like is crucial too! Especially in unwanted cases where your dog is needed to stay overnight, you got to know that your dog is well taken care of. Though it is a cringe-worthy thought, but some clinics do not have 24/7 supervision for stay-in pets. In worse cases, the pets living condition are even neglected!
Don’t hesitate to ask for an inspection of where the dogs are kept in the clinic! If you notice that the place smells bad or if it is unhygienic then it’s probably not a good idea to keep your pets there. A 24-houravilable hospital staff is ideal but not all vets have this. So if you do find it, take advantage of it! If your vet doesn’t have this, other arrangements can be done so don’t worry. Even if there isn’t a 24-hour hospital staff, a systematic and hygienic set up of the pets’ living conditions is indeed good enough.
Preventatives are medically authorized efforts to prevent certain diseases. These mostly include vaccination and tablets. And most of these are often times necessary for dogs by de facto. Many contagious diseases that can be present in dogs in their later time can be easily prevented by taking simple vaccinations or tablets. Diseases such as rabies, heartworm, distemper, parvo and just some of the many other diseases in the list that can be prevented.
With these said, veterinarians should be well updated with the latest available preventatives. The necessary preventatives are dependent on the living condition, breed, age and the disease’s status count on the area. All of which the veterinarian should have a good knowledge on! However, preventative for diseases such as heartworm is needed for any dog across the board.
If you are new to dogs and vets, ask what preventatives are needed for your dog as it can be different for each dog. Do expect tests to be done and in other cases, several visits to the vet may be required. Also ask for preventatives for other things such as tick and fleas. The vet would recommend collars or tablets to be implemented into your dog’s diet. But do keep in mind that it’s always dependent on your dog’s condition. So if you are unsure of anything, feel free to ask for other things or for further explanations.
3. Diet and Lifestyle
Another thing to ask your vet is the recommended diet and lifestyle that is best suitable for your dog’s breed. Every dog breed has their own suggested diet and lifestyle that best suits them. For instance, a Golden Retriever is more suitable for an active lifestyle with constant outdoor exercises whereas a Pug is more suitable for passive indoors living. With this said, your vet should know the proper healthy diet and lifestyle required for your dog.
Don’t be afraid to ask for the specifics! Get a written down diet for your dog or ask for how many hours are required for your dog to exercise each day. You can also for what activities are not recommended for your dog and which are. Most importantly, if you have plans to bring your dog for outdoors activities like hiking or running, ask your vet about the safety precautions to avoid injuries. With these said, when it comes to diet and lifestyle, your vet should be one of the best person to ask. So definitely take the chance to do so!
4. Spay or Neuter
What’s the difference between spaying and neutering? Well, the answer is simple; Spaying is the removal of reproductive organs for female dogs whereas neutering is for male dogs. When spaying, the ovaries and usually the uterus will be removed. Whereas neutering, both testicles and the related structures will be removed.
There are many benefits that come from spaying or neutering your pet. Medically speaking, your dog will be less prone to cancers and tumors. However, if you do plan to do so, it is recommended that you spay or neuter your dog when he or she is 6 months old or younger.
If you are unsure of making the decision, this is where you can ask your vet for his or her’s opinion! But remember that ultimately, you hold the decisive power. Feel free to ask the vet to break down all the benefits and cons of spaying or neutering your pet. You should ask when is the right time to spay or neuter your pet.
Lastly, ask when and how often you need to come back for check ups! Generally, it’ll be great for your dog to visit the vet for a check up once a year. But depending on your dog and your conscience, you can always go more often than just once a year. If you are unsure, ask your vet about it. A good veterinarian should be able to provide a reasonable timeline as to how often you should pay him or her a visit.
With these said, don’t feel anxious to ask your vet questions! It’s their job to answer you and it’s your job to find out the right information to have better care for your dog. In the end, it's all done toe nsure that your dog can live a happy healthy life.