Getting your first pet, whether you choose a cat, a dog, or an exotic pet like a lizard, is really exciting. However, there are many things you need to do to prepare, and choosing a vet is one of the most important. This guide explains three questions you should ask yourself when considering any vet clinic.
Do They Have Any Specialised Knowledge My Pet Requires?
There are lots of different types of vets in Australia, and as VetPrac explains, most specialise in companion animals such as dogs and cats, as well as small pets like rabbits and guinea pigs. If you have an exotic pet, such as a snake or scorpion, you might want to find a vet that specialises in these types of animals, as they will have a deeper understanding of their health and needs. Different vets often also specialise in different disciplines of vet medicine – if it's really important to you that you can see a vet who specialises in oncology, skin complaints, or surgery, spend some time finding one who fits your needs. Most people don't need to do this, however, unless they know their new pet has some pre-existing medical condition.
What Services Do They Offer?
Vet practices also differ in size and in the number of services they offer. Find out what services they can provide at the clinic you're considering. For example, if your cat needed surgery, would they do it in-house or would you be sent to a more specialised clinic? Can they do X-rays or other types of diagnostic scans? If you'd be sent elsewhere, as is the case at some smaller clinics, how much does that matter to you? There might also be other services that you would like, like claw clipping, grooming, or dental cleaning, so make sure that your chosen vet offers the services you require.
What Is Their Procedure in an Emergency?
No matter how careful you are with your pet, you will have an emergency at some point. Whether your dog's eaten a box of chocolates or your rabbit has a broken leg, sometimes it's essential to see a vet as quickly as possible. For every vet clinic you're considering, find out what happens in an emergency. Is there a number you can call at any time for advice? Can an emergency vet see your pet at any time of the night or day, and what's the charge for that? If your pet will be sent elsewhere at night or on weekends, how convenient is that for you? Find out all the information before the emergency happens, so you can be prepared.
By making sure a vet has any specialised knowledge you require, understanding what services they provide, and finding out what happens in an emergency, you can get a good idea of whether any vet clinic suits the needs of your first pet. Find a vet near you.