TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Care & Grooming › How to choose a good vet
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

How to choose a good vet

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
I am adopting 2 kitties soon, and just moved, in my previous town i just went by friends suggestions, however i know very few people in my new town... i was wondering how everyone else found their vet... i did take my dog to the old vet, but it is quite a drive, and with new kittens it would be every 3 weeks for their kitten shots...
post #2 of 24
For me it's been trial and error. Right now I have a "main" vet, 2 back up vets and a 24 hour emergency vet. I think the most important thing is do you like them and trust them. And if you do, do they know their stuff. Just because they see cats doesn't mean they know cats. I had a "rabbit" vet that saw rabbits but read out of a manual to tell me things about them. I shouldn't know more than the vet. And also, see how they respect you as an owner. You guys don't have to agree with everything but can they respect your decisions as long as it wont harm the animals and you have a good reason behind it. A knowledgable vet with an open mind would be perfect for everyone I would think.
post #3 of 24
I would go in person and visit a few of them. Meet the doctor and take a tour of the facility to judge the atmosphere for yourself. You would probably need to make an appt. for this though, rather than just showing up, to make sure they have time to talk to you.

Also, if there is an emergency vet in town, they might be a good place to ask for a referral to a regular vet.
post #4 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thank y'all for the advice... i started calling a few vets in the area and found that i could weed out quite a few by how rude they were over the phone after i mentioned that i didn't yet have the kittens... my girlfriend works at a vet's office a half hour away, and i think i am going to go there if i can't find one that works near here.
post #5 of 24
I think vets who only see cats are the best.
post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aileen06 View Post
I think vets who only see cats are the best.
Just because I'm curious but will you explain why you think that?
post #7 of 24
My vet was highly recommended to me by others who go to her. Also my cats like her, if they didn't I'd change no matter what I think of her the cats get the final say.
post #8 of 24
Do not just go by someone's recommendations...no matter how good they say the vet is! I made that mistake with our dog and things almost didn't turn out well for him. Call the clinic, visit them, take a tour of the facility. I love my current vet...they were one of the few that has ever given me a tour and taken me to see EVERY part of their clinic, also got introduced to all the staff and got treated like family. Another thing is (which doesn't always mean they are good but something to look for) how busy are they when you visit? Vet clinics that are completely empty kind of scare me!

Good luck with the new kitties when you get them!
post #9 of 24
When I was considering adopting my first cat, I called vets in my area first to make appointments for a meet & greet visit. I finally went with a close-by vet who has several vets in the practice, although you can request a particular vet if you wish when you make an appointment, has hours seven days a week (since they've got six or so vets, they can spread out the hours), has a working relationship with a close-by E-vet, keeps a tech in the building after hours to look after any pets in the surgery, and totally understood the idea of choosing a vet before picking up the pet. They also work very well with scheduling the intro exam on the same day you pick up your new pet, and I've never had a problem getting my cats in within a few hours when I've been particularly worried about something.

Good luck finding someone you and your babies will be comfortable with.
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by okiron View Post
Just because I'm curious but will you explain why you think that?
I know you didn't ask me, but I go to a feline only vet as well. I like that she is up to date on the latest treatments, etc. Of course any vet could be, despite the type of practice. Abby is a very skittish cat. I like that we don't encounter any dogs, etc in the waiting room.

I've had a good experince with my vet, but I wouldn't rule out a non-feline specialist in the future.


Here's a good article on how to choose a vet:

http://www.thecatsite.com/Health/209...or-My-Cat.html
post #11 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone! your responses really helped guide me, I spoke to a few offices, the cat clinic in my town was the most helpful, lol, i have 4 weeks or so to figure it out... but i am such a pre-planner!
post #12 of 24
I found my vet by accident. I had been going to a local vet, Dr. Connie, in town for years, who was in a practice that employed several vets. For some reason, she wasn't available one day to see Spooky, so I just saw whoever was available at the time. It turned out to be Dr. Sue, who has been my vet ever since. We seemed to hit it off immediately. Dr. Connie was very much into horses and dogs, but she seemed knowledgeable about cats, and was nice. Dr. Sue and I just 'clicked.' She knows my human medical background and is able to talk to me as an equal. She allows me (even encourages me) to be extremely proactive in my treatment of my kittie's renal failure. At one time, she was thinking of moving her practice across the state. I was completely willing to follow her to continue having her be my vet. Thank goodness she decided to stay here! Sometimes you just get lucky, like I did! I recommend my vet to anyone who needs a vet.

You can ask opinions at work, church or school. Sometimes, just doing what you are doing....call and ask to see the facility and talk to the vet, before you actually need them, will help you weed out the ones that you feel have no potential. Ask to see the exam rooms, the kennels, the cages where the cats recuperate after surgery, the back room where procedures are done. Check for cleanliness, overcrowding in kennels and cages. Talk to the desk (secretarial) staff, the technicians and the vet(s). Ask if they are staffed around the clock, or if they recommend a particular E.R. vet. Ask for references...any place worth their salt will give you some. Good luck!
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks Pookie, I work at PetSmart, so i have asked around there to find out where everyone goes ... the groomers, the associates, etc. and a lot of people with cats gravitated to 2 places, so i am going to check out those 2 first , and then there are a couple that i wanted to see ... and then 1 vet i am going to give a second chance to, because she did know her stuff... she was just expensive!
post #14 of 24
I'm so glad you are planning ahead like this. I think I found my favorite vet it is a huge practice about 30 minutes away from me called the ark. When my rabbit was injured the vet did emergency surgery on her after hours and treated her very well. Just go with your gut. I stopped going to my first vet because she was rude and didn't seem to care about my animals. She actually kind of handled them roughly and hardly spoke to me. They also charged an arm and a leg.
post #15 of 24
The reason I like my cat only vet is the same as Alleys Mom. They are great with cats,and they are very up on the latest treatments for cats since thats their specialty. When my cat Rebby had polycystic I was taking him to a both dog and cat vet. When he first started having the problems with his kidneys the vet thought it might be Polycystic but never tested him for it or gave him any king of treatment. After many trips to the emergency vet and the last time the vet at the emergency said he has a heart murmur is he being treated for that. She explained how he needed to be tested for the polycystic. Please understand Rebby was my first cat so I was clueless on alot of things. Well we decided to have him looked at by someone else. We tried to get him in the cat doctor by our house but they weren't taking new patients but a vet from there had left to oen her on cats only clinic 45 mins from our house. My daughter called there and explained the situation and she saw him that same day. She found out he had high blood pressure which caused the heart murmur ad did a cat scan for the polycystic. She immediately started him on blood pressure medicine and fluids under his skin every 4 days. She taught us how to do that ourselves. She was always up on any new treatments or any new medications that came on the market. Shes the best. Also her office is set up cat friendly with birds and fish things cats like to look at. After we started going to her Rebby never had another emergency room visit. Another good thing is she never over books so you never sit there long at all, they just seem to understand cats and their needs better.Sorry this was long but I believe especially if you have a special needs cat, a cat only vet is the way to go. Aileen
post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lindsey88 View Post
I'm so glad you are planning ahead like this. I think I found my favorite vet it is a huge practice about 30 minutes away from me called the ark. When my rabbit was injured the vet did emergency surgery on her after hours and treated her very well. Just go with your gut. I stopped going to my first vet because she was rude and didn't seem to care about my animals. She actually kind of handled them roughly and hardly spoke to me. They also charged an arm and a leg.
I had a similar experience with a cat vet in this area that i took 3 kitties that my ex roommate had locked in her bedroom... it was her first year... took the 3 kitties in 2 i had taken to go get vaccines from the vaccine clinic, the other was a nursing mother who I had given the babies to the humane society. they said they didn't really have room for older cats at that time, but gave me some advice on rehoming them. so i took them to the animal place she barely talked to me gave one of the kitties shots again! dewormed them all, and charged me 350 bucks i didn't have that much on the card i had brought with me ... she allowed me to write a check to be cashed on friday (payday) which was the next day... lol, i am not in a hurry to go back to her... i just wanted the cats to be tested and utd for when i rehomed them... the adoption fees were like 40 bucks so i definitely took a loss as far as being reimbursed but i thought they were sooo sweet and wanted them to have good homes...

I must admit the cat clinics were the only ones who took their time talking to me... invited me to come in see their facilities... so i was kind of impressed... i may still continue to make the trek to take my dog to the animal hospital in my old town... Bubba just loves them! but ... I think since the kitties will be seeing the doctor quite a bit for their spays... shots... etc... i think they need a closer vet! lol, and making the trip in the car with 2 kittens may be a bit much!
post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama of Bronte View Post
I had a similar experience with a cat vet in this area that i took 3 kitties that my ex roommate had locked in her bedroom... it was her first year... took the 3 kitties in 2 i had taken to go get vaccines from the vaccine clinic, the other was a nursing mother who I had given the babies to the humane society. they said they didn't really have room for older cats at that time, but gave me some advice on rehoming them. so i took them to the animal place she barely talked to me gave one of the kitties shots again! dewormed them all, and charged me 350 bucks i didn't have that much on the card i had brought with me ... she allowed me to write a check to be cashed on friday (payday) which was the next day... lol, i am not in a hurry to go back to her... i just wanted the cats to be tested and utd for when i rehomed them... the adoption fees were like 40 bucks so i definitely took a loss as far as being reimbursed but i thought they were sooo sweet and wanted them to have good homes...

I must admit the cat clinics were the only ones who took their time talking to me... invited me to come in see their facilities... so i was kind of impressed... i may still continue to make the trek to take my dog to the animal hospital in my old town... Bubba just loves them! but ... I think since the kitties will be seeing the doctor quite a bit for their spays... shots... etc... i think they need a closer vet! lol, and making the trip in the car with 2 kittens may be a bit much!
hehe maybe I should start introducing them to the car so they will be used to it by the time you get them.
post #18 of 24
i am favoriting this post, thanks for the share of info everyone!
post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lindsey88 View Post
hehe maybe I should start introducing them to the car so they will be used to it by the time you get them.
lol, that would be awesome, although i hope to find a close vet... so they don't have to deal with the drive!
post #20 of 24
The vet we have was fairly new in the business but recommended to us by my wife's aunt, who had dealt with her on some other business (probably real estate) issue. That was 10 years ago.

But she is also the vet our local shelter uses, almost exclusively. She clearly loves cats, since she has four "office cats" roaming the premises. She also saved the life of a cat that was brought into the shelter with a broken leg and pelvis. She did all the surgery and got him going again normally, and when he was healed up she sponsored him for adoption. She always has a cat or two from the shelter in a big cage in the waiting room, available for adoption.

And when Sterling had a bad reaction to his most recent shots, they let Dottie rush him in, treated him, and charged us nothing.

So, we got a recommendation from both a relative and a shelter.
post #21 of 24
How to cut to the chase:

I recently moved to a new city and live near a facility that has a 24-hour ER staffed by a vet. They also have 12 vets on staff.

I asked the vets techs at the front desk: "If your cat was sick, which vet would YOU take her to?"

They ALL mentioned the same vet.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
How to cut to the chase:

I recently moved to a new city and live near a facility that has a 24-hour ER staffed by a vet. They also have 12 vets on staff.

I asked the vets techs at the front desk: "If your cat was sick, which vet would YOU take her to?"

They ALL mentioned the same vet.
Oh, smart!

We too found our vet by accident. We took in our kittens (who are former ferals) and went out vet looking. We needed one relatively close-by as we don't have a car, so we either needed to be able to walk there or take a taxi. Anyway, there is one by my husband's office, so we popped by and explained our situation. The first thing he did? Went to his office, scooped up his former feral kitten Pumpkin and handed him to us while he went to get us some worming pills. He then spent about an hour of his own time (it was a Saturday and he was supposed to be closing when we got there) discussing the care of our cats with us.

I have since met all the staff and they are all great. His son is the other vet, and he performed the neutering on our boys. Their office is small and cozy and attached to their house - you just feel like your pets are being treated by people who really love animals. That vibe is important. Our cats - though lovely at home - are not fans of going to the vet and they always deal with them in a manner that is appropriate. I never feel like I am annoying them by bringing in my cats, who are prone to wild behaviour at the vet!

We have an emergency 24-hour vet as well. We haven't had to use them, but we are happy to know that they are there. My friend takes her cats there, and she is happy with them.
post #23 of 24
When we moved it was basically trial and error. I didn't like the first one since they changed doctors on me. I made an appointment with one doctor and they gave me the other which did not impress me since I specifically requested the other one. The second vet was recommended to me by my SIL because she takes her dog to him and he's wonderful with her dog. Unfortunately he seemed frightened to death of Bijou and I had to request that he even check Bijou's ears. He never checked Bijou's teeth at all. So now, I've got his next appointment for the old vet we had where we used to live who, ironically has moved closer to where we live now.
post #24 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all the replies i chose a Cat Doctor, the same one that my coworkers recommended. I am getting the babies next week! The vet and i have been emailing back and forth, and she made me feel very comfortable when i ask questions
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Care & Grooming
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Care & Grooming › How to choose a good vet