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What Your Vet Wants You To Know: Improve Your Next Visit With Proper Vetiquette


Jade Poole from I Write Words


It’s important to be respectful of your fellow pet parents, their pets and your vet. Start your pet’s relationship with your vet on the right paw with this guide on vetiquette 101.

Without knowing it, you might be guilty of some of the common mistakes pet owners make when visiting the vet.

In order to make your vet’s life easier (and your own), it’s vital that you are aware of how to properly behave at the vet’s office and how to ensure your pet behaves too.

Here are some of the top things your vet wants you to know and keep in mind to improve your next visit…

Before your consultation - what you need to know

Please make an appointment

Of course, some larger practices will have vets available to see your pet without making an appointment, but smaller practices need you to call ahead. In fact, it’s just good manners to make an appointment.

Don’t be late

If you have made an appointment, then make sure you are on time.

If you have a nervous pet

If your pet is nervous, then chat to your vet about their off-peak times so that there will be fewer pets in the waiting room to further agitate your dog.

Emergencies over check-ups

Keep in mind that even if you have booked an appointment, emergencies will take preference. If your vet is busy treating an emergency situation, then you might have to have your pet seen to by another vet or wait until your vet can see you.

Can I bring more than one pet to my consultation?

Remember, that each animal needs his or her own consultation and care. If you are wanting to bring along more than one pet, then ensure you speak to your vet to book two back to back consults as you are generally billed per consultation per pet.

When arriving at the vet - what you need to know

Leashes and carriers

Your dog should stay on a leash during the entire visit. Keep the leash short when sitting in the waiting room and keep your dog right by your side.

Cats should stay in their carriers until it’s time to see the vet.

Ask for help to get your dog out of the car

If you need help getting your big pet out of the car, then ask for help!

Remember to make sure your dog is on a leash and your cat is in a carrier.

If your pet is injured and it’s an emergency

In some emergency situations, you might not be equipped with a leash or carrier, in this case, you should most definitely ask for help!

A good tip is to always keep a leash and a towel in your car as a towel can be used as a mini stretcher or a swaddling device to keep your pet calm.

Bear in mind that our pets pick up on our emotions, so you need to remain calm in an emergency situation.

Do not panic. Take a few deep breaths and let your vet and their staff help you. It’s a good idea to phone your vet while on your drive there as they can then prepare to help you in the parking lot.

If your pet is nervous

A clinic can be a scary place for a pet, even outside of peak hours. To help with your pet’s anxiety, it’s a good idea to call the main desk when you have parked outside. Ask them to please phone you when the vet is ready to see you.

Bring your pet’s favourite toy and their blanket from home to help them feel calm.

During the consultation

Answer all questions as accurately as you can - never hold back information from your vet.

Stay off of your phone and put it on silent.

If you can, show your vet some photos and videos of symptoms. Have a look at this blog post on 6 genius ways your smartphone camera will improve your next visit to the vet.

Help your vet by holding your pet and keeping her calm.

When your vet is listening to your pet’s breath, try not to talk.

Ask any questions you have - don’t be afraid of sounding silly. Your vet wants to know your concerns.

Pet Insurance and Vet Visits

How can I claim with pet insurance?

Most pet insurers will only reimburse you after the consultation.

Oneplan Pet Insurance is the only insurer I know that that will pay you BEFORE you see the vet for a visit.

In emergency situations, you will probably have to process the claim amount after you have paid your vet.

Does my pet insurance cover vet visits?

The pet healthcare plan you have chosen will dictate what kind of benefits you are covered for.

So, if you have a pet hospital plan, then this is likely to only include cover for emergency and surgery procedures and treatments.

More comprehensive plans, such as Oneplan’s Pet Super Plan includes cover for vet visits and routine care.

A trip to the V-E-T can be stressful if you are not prepared, but knowing what to do and how to handle the situation will make the world of difference for you, your pet and your vet.

Until next time,

The Pet Insurance Team

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