When you made a choice to have a pet become a part of your life, you made a choice to give a piece of your heart away. You saw something special in that infant life that made you decide to have it become a member of your family, or in some cases, your only family.
That tumbling ball of fur and energy quickly bonded with you and gave you their devotion and trust. You have fed, watered, trained, cleaned up after, and snuggled your pet and now you have to choose who will be the doctor for your baby. How can you know that you have found the right veterinarian for your special pet?
American Animal Hospital Approval
The AAHA is the organization that accredits veterinary hospitals. Accredited hospitals agree to hold themselves to high standards and guidelines. Established in 1933, the AAHA seeks to enhance, enable, and aid veterinarians in the delivery of care, operation of their practices, and the quality of the care they provide. When you seek out an AAHA member veterinary hospital, you can be assured of receiving a high standard quality of attention.
Your philosophies are similar
Having similar views regarding how to raise and care for animals is crucial. If you read the oath that your veterinarian took some things may stand out, according to Avma.org:
“Being admitted to the profession of veterinary medicine, I solemnly swear to use my scientific knowledge and skills for the benefit of society through the protection of animal health and welfare, the prevention and relief of animal suffering, the conservation of animal resources, the promotion of public health, and the advancement of medical knowledge. I will practice my profession conscientiously, with dignity, and in keeping with the principles of veterinary medical ethics. I accept as a lifelong obligation the continual improvement of my professional knowledge and competence.”
If you read carefully, you will notice “the conservation of animal resources” and “benefit of society.” Those are two very open statements that indicate some very open thoughts in the mind of a veterinarian. Do you look at your animal as a resource? Some veterinarians do. Some veterinarians have focused their career towards large animals and supporting farmers who make their livings off of those pigs, cows, and horses. Those same vets may also take small animals, so their perspective on your pet may be slightly different than yours.
Regarding the “benefit to society,” that simply places humans first, animals second. If you at all see that there is parity between humans and animals as sentient beings, then finding a vet who sees things as you do will be paramount in the care of your pet.
The safety and security of your pet are crucial as well. Make a point of assessing the general care and cleanliness of the facility, the security of the holding areas, the technical level of the equipment, and the quality of the assistants to the veterinarian. This will go a long way toward easing your anxiety should you have to have your pet stay for any period or have any surgery.
Other than also looking at cost, these three parts should help you have peace about the hands you are putting the life of one of your dearest friends into.