How to choose the right vets

When your furry family member is sick or injured it can be a very distressing time all round. Having a reliable, trusted local vet on hand can literally be a lifesaver, so it’s worth making sure you have the name and number of some good local ones you’ve found on Poochd.

Here are some things you might want to consider when looking for the perfect local vet:

Recommendations from friends and family

Once you’ve found a few vets on Poochd that you think might fit the bill, ask around friends, colleagues and family to see if anyone else takes their dog there too.

Distance from home

We recommend choosing a vets which is close to where you live, so that it’s quick for you to get to in an emergency. It’s also handy for convenience in general pet healthcare, such as injections and check ups. Make sure you know exactly where the practice is located and whether it has parking available or is near local transport links.

Opening and closing hours

A good vets practice will offer emergency treatment outside of its usual opening hours. Even if the usual building you visit isn’t open, they should be able to direct you to an alternative. If you work during the week, it’s a good idea to make sure they’re open during evenings and weekends too. If your dog ever needs to stay overnight, for example after an operation, then ask them to confirm there will always be someone there to monitor them.

Bedside manner

When you visit the vets with your furry friend, you want to feel reassured and calm. Does the vet take the time to get to know you and your dog, and listen thoroughly to your concerns? Are they kind and empathetic? Do they handle pets gently? Will you be kept well informed?

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Price

Obviously you can’t put a value on your pooch’s health but the reality is that vet care doesn’t come cheap. Prices can vary massively depending on what they offer, the facilities they’ve got and where the practice is located. Find out any treatment costs up front, as well as ongoing costs such as medicine and follow-up appointments. It’s definitely well worth getting pet insurance too just in case you’re faced with a large bill you’re going to then struggle to afford.

If you’re worried about the price of taking your dog for vet treatment, there are charities like the PDSA and The Blue Cross that provide veterinary treatment at a reduced cost for people in receipt of certain benefits. Visit their websites to find out more.

Extra helpful services

Some vets offer extra services for your dog, like obedience classes and socialisation classes. To find out if your vet practice offers anything like this, speak to reception or visit their website.

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