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Getting Yourself and Your Pet Ready for a Trip to the Vet

December 5, 2011

Maybe it’s time for your pet’s annual check-up, or perhaps your pet is not feeling their very best and needs examined. Whatever the reason, with a little forethought, you can make your pet’s trip to the vet as stress free as possible for the both of you.

There are several things you can do before you even leave the house. If your pet is prone to car sickness, don’t feed them for several hours before you leave to help prevent an upset tummy for your pet and a car to clean up for you. If your pet is coming in for a routine check-up, be sure to try and collect a stool sample the morning of, or the evening before your visit so that we can check it for internal parasites. For safety, have your cat and other small animals in a carrier for the trip. Small dogs will also be safer riding in a carrier as well. If you have a larger dog, especially one that is not accustomed to car rides, consider having someone else come along that can sit in the back seat with your dog to keep him calm and to be sure he stays under control in the vehicle. Also be sure your dog is on a leash when you bring him into the clinic.

If your pet is on any medication, you may want to write down the names and dosages of the medicines before you leave. If you have any specific questions you wish to ask, you may want to write them down as well.

Once you arrive, check in with a receptionist to let us know you’re there.  If you have time constraints, let them know that as well. We try to stay on time, but emergencies do take priority.

Once you’re brought back to an examination room, the receptionist will collect information as to the reason for your visit.  If your pet is there for its annual exam, be sure to mention any issues your pet may be having, or any other procedures, such as nail trims, that you want done. We don’t need a detailed history at this point, but just a general idea of how your pet is doing and any concerns you may have. If your pet has any allergies, or if they’ve had reactions to vaccinations in the past, be sure to mention that as well. If your pet isn’t feeling well, the receptionist will have further questions. One last piece of information that your veterinarian and his staff will appreciate  knowing is whether or not your pet has been known to be “less than friendly” with strangers. We know that although we are happy to meet your furry friend, they are not always as happy to see us.

The veterinarian will then be in to examine your pet.  They may take your pet into our treatment room for its vaccinations, or any other treatments that are needed. If your pet is ill, they may be taken back for diagnostic procedures, such as radiographs or ultrasounds. You may be able to wait or we may have you schedule an appointment to come back to pick your pet up.

If your pet is ill, the veterinarian will go over any findings from diagnostics or blood work with you. They will then give you options for treating your pet. If you have any questions, please ask! We want you to understand what is going on with your pet and what your treatment options are.  If finances are a concern, we are also more than happy to prepare an estimate for you and work with you on treatment options.

We know that bringing your pet in can sometimes be stressful for you and for them.  With some planning and forethought, you can make it as easy and stress free as possible.