4 tips for getting the most out of your vet visitBack to overview
1. Be prepared!
Whether you are a new pet owner, or if this is your first visit to a new vet(for example, after a move) or for a consultation with a specialist, it is important that you take your pet’s health record with you. That will help your vet and the vet team provide your pet with the best care.
For routine visits, be prepared to provide your vet with a list of food brands and any medications administered. Be as precise as possible and mention any specific diet, as well as treats given on a regular basis.
Mention any change in water or food consumption: any loss of appetite or, conversely, excessive consumption should be a warning sign. Similarly, if your pet’s energy level, behaviour or usual condition have changed (such as vomiting or diarrhoea), talk to your vet.
Do you suspect your pet may be sick? Prepare a precise description of their condition and the symptoms you have noted, as well as how long it lasted.
To help you remember everything and get the most out of your visit to the vet, consider preparing a list of questions before the appointment.
2. Prepare your pet
Even a simple routine visit can be stressful for your pet, with contact with other animals or people they do not know...
As part of your socialisation training, go to the veterinary clinic with your pet a few days before the appointment, when your pet is calm. When you are at the vet clinic, give your pet some treats to associate the vet clinic with a positive experience!
At home, do some of the things your pet will experience during the visit such as being stood over, handled and touched especially around the eyes, ears and paws… Make sure this is a pleasant experience! Exercising before your appointment will also help your pet experience a calmer and more relaxed visit!
3. At the clinic
Keep your dog on a lead when you get to the vet hospital. If you have a cat, do not take them out of their carrier. Bring a familiar object with you, such as a blanket or toy! They will feel more comfortable and less stressed!
Dogs and cats sense emotions: if you are stressed they will definitely be stressed too.
So, throughout the visit, try to remain calm.
A visit to the vet is also an opportunity to ask how best to contact them (telephone, email, text message) and how to contact the veterinary team in a medical emergency. Record everything in your pet’s health record!
4. After the visit
If your pet’s condition allows, the best thing is to take them for a walk or play with them to reward them right after the visit.
If medical treatment is prescribed, record any changes in water and food consumption, behaviour and also when symptoms go away; this should be mentioned at the follow-up visit to your vet.
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