Key questions to ask a new vet - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-12-2010, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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Key questions to ask a new vet

I just wondered if there are any key questions that you ask when seeing a new vet for the first time.

I obviously don't do so well when it comes to choosing a vet. They either turn out to be completely and utterly incompetent, or I like them but my dogs don't. Whatever the reason, we usually end up striking out and coming to the conclusion that it's not a good match.

I took Riley to a new vet's office last week (just to see a tech) for a nail trim. The staff was so wonderful with him that I decided we might just give the vet a try. Gunner's due for a check-up, so I made the appointment and we go in this evening.

I started thinking that maybe I don't ask enough (or the right) questions right off the bat, to find out if the vet will be a good match for us.
So is there anything in particular that you try to find out, during your initial visit?
Of course the vaccine issue will come up right away and his philosophy on that will be a big factor. And I need to find out if he's familiar with EPI. But beyond that... anything else? How do you get a feel for them?

Deni
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Riley - Golden Retriever - 2 1/2 years
Jake - (aka Demon kitty) Gray & white tabby
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-12-2010, 03:56 PM
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You will know if you like the vet when he/she meets your dog. I can't think of anything special to ask but a good vet will try to get to know your dog not just treat you like a number. I would not have them clip your dogs nails the first visit if you are trying to make a good impression on your dog. good luck
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-12-2010, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZAYDA View Post
You will know if you like the vet when he/she meets your dog. I can't think of anything special to ask but a good vet will try to get to know your dog not just treat you like a number. I would not have them clip your dogs nails the first visit if you are trying to make a good impression on your dog. good luck
Nope, no need to worry about that. I do Gunner's nails myself. I just checked his ears again today, too -- made sure they're nice and clean, so they won't be tempted to mess with those, either. (He tolerates it very well, but he doesn't like it.)

I know that two of the techs there have GSDs, so that's a good sign.

I just wish I was a better judge of character, or something, when it comes to this!

Deni
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Gunner - GSD - 7 years
Riley - Golden Retriever - 2 1/2 years
Jake - (aka Demon kitty) Gray & white tabby
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-13-2010, 07:29 PM
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well I just finished "shopping" for a new vet. For me, it is totally about their views on health care: what is their position on diets and this doesn't mean the "yes science diet is the best food on the market!" sales pitch, actual knowledge on food and diet, do they support raw (bc I feed raw) and have knowledge; pharmaceuticals- I take a minimal only approach, only when all else has failed or is an urgent situation; do they support/have knowledge in alternative therapies; vaccines you got covered; can you have open, honest conversations rather than being bullied into treatments; do they keep up on their education, speak at or attend seminars; how do they react when discussing something and you disagree or would like more info; a discussion about basic fees is good, though not always something they like (who cares) bc some vets vary quite dramatically in fees, but if it's worth it than it's fine; will they book some time to meet with you and be "interviewed" so to speak about their views on heath care (make sure you verify no fee for this, I scratched several bc they wanted to charge me, just to meet the vet for 10 mins, lots will meet with you, no charge); what are the hours of operation and do they suit your schedule; and my personal fave, GOOGLE....believe it or not I found out a lot of good stuff about my new vet this way. When I met her, she cudn't believe what I knew about her, about seminars she organized with Jean Dodds, that she took courses with Richard Pitcairns...was probably THE reason I ended up choosing her. A good referral helps, but as long as the person referring has the same view on health you do.

Dexter-male, sable GSD, 2 yr. old rescue

"My impetus is an unfulfillable debt to animals
entrusted to my care before I recognized the extent of our advanced industrial and societal hypocrisy (i.e. the extent of my own ignorance and participation)."

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Kelsey- 15 yrs, GSD, an inspiration
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-13-2010, 08:05 PM
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When I started with my new vet a year ago, I really didn't ask too many questions, but observed how she approached my dogs(one is fear aggressive), and because I had a pup, she was willing to go with my requested vaccination protocol. We talked about vaccinations, diet and she listened to me, then proceeded to give her reasons for the vaccinations she thought necessary, that I declined. She was fine with the raw diet I feed, because she knew I researched it and was feeding a balanced diet. I use this vet because she is minutes away and lives on the clinic property, so emergency visit/care would be instant.
I would love to go w/ a holistic vet, but there aren't any locally. At least the one I go to is open to what I want for my dogs care, even if she isn't in agreement.

Jane~
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