Part 4 – How to choose a veterinarian

Choosing the right veterinarian will play a very important part in your cat’s health down the road. Use these tips to help find the right vet for you:

  • Research credentials – Not all vets have the same level of knowledge and background. Check where your vet went to school, how he/she did and what type of work or conferences he/she attends to stay up to date with the medical industry.
  • Is your vet personable – Does your vet explain things? Is he/she easy to talk to, polite, knowledgeable and up-to-date? Don’t be afraid to ask questions. And if your vet ever makes you feel uncomfortable for asking questions reconsider going back.
  • Does your veterinary office have 24 hour emergency care – Cats don’t always get sick from 9 to 5 pm so make sure that your vet is open to accommodate your needs and accidents.
  • Is your vet close to home – The worst thing to have to do is to drive a long distance (which can waste valuable time) to get to the vet. When an emergency happens you want to get your pet to the doctor as fast as possible.
  • What are the costs – Is your vet reasonably priced? You do get what you pay for so do beware of too cheap services. However, you do need to find a vet that is in your price range.
  • How is the office itself – Make sure to visit the office and check out if it is clean, organized, friendly and well-run. If you feel uncomfortable there, so will your kitty!
  • Policies – What are your vets policies on letting you sit in during exams, visiting your pet before and after surgery or in ICU. Does your vet let you watch surgeries? Does your vet let you take part in your cat’s care and medical health? What are policies on euthanasia (some vets put cats to sleep at the drop of the hat, others like to try everything possible before putting the animal down) and do these policies coordinate with how you feel? These can all be very important questions that you might need to know someday.
  • Get referrals – Ask friends, colleagues and family for recommendations. If someone you trust trusts a particular vet, chances are you might be able to trust that vet as well.