Dog is man’s best friend, but unfortunately, that friendship does not guarantee the same quality of health care. Most veterinarians are solidly committed to providing your pets with the highest-quality care possible, but it’s often difficult to know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.

Unless, of course, you take time to do some research about the vet clinics you’re considering. If you haven’t done this yet, it’s time you sit down and take a look at some of the key sticking points that will directly effect the quality of care your pet receives as well as your own personal satisfaction with the clinic. If you know what to look for, you could have a much easier time picking out the good apples from the bad ones. Here are a few things to consider.

Go with recommendations

The best place to start is always recommendations from other pet owners. But don’t rely on one person’s experience alone. With so much information available in the form of online reviews, you can sample a number of experiences and sort potential vet offices according to their average customer experience. Find out what vet offices in your area turn out the most happy customers — every clinic is sure to have negative opinions, but the vast majority will tell you what you should expect from a given vet.

Assess the vet care experience

When you decide to visit the vet’s office, take stock of the entire experience for both you and your pet. Are the receptionists friendly? Does the staff seem to like animals? Are steps taken to give your pet the greatest comfort possible? You can find all of these qualities at many vet clinics, but unfortunately, not all are the same. No one enjoys going to the vet — least of all your pet — so make sure you find a place that is as accommodating as possible.

Ask about equipment updates and maintenance

An aging vet clinic is no place to take your pet. During your intake with the vet, ask them about the upgrades they’ve made with their medical technology over the year. You should also ask about their practices for maintaining and repairing medical equipment. Processes like tee probe repair and other upgrades in technology need to be a regular aspect of any vet’s routine. If not, it could jeopardize the health of your pet.

Inquire about the vet’s support services

Vets tend to have a specific course of procedure for dealing with situations beyond what they can handle. Ask your vet, for example, what procedures are in place to handle emergency needs outside of clinic hours. Additionally, how do vets handle difficult diagnoses? Most — the good ones, at least — have fellow vets they consult when they struggle to reach a conclusion on their own.

Healthy Best Friend

Healthy Best Friend

Any pet owner understands that finding a reliable vet is essential. Don’t put yourself in a potentially frustrating situation by settling for a vet just because of convenience or cost. Vets have an incredible role in the health, happiness and longevity of your pets, so it’s worth your time to conduct your due diligence and find the clinic that is the best fit for you.