Choosing the Right Veterinarian for Your Dog

Bringing home a new dog or puppy is an exciting adventure. It’s also important to make sure that your pup will be under the right care in their early years and as they get older. Similar to humans and doctors, dogs need a veterinarian that is qualified, reputable and with whom you can form a positive working relationship. Depending on your dog’s breed or health conditions, it’s important to pick a veterinarian that is well-versed in their needs. Below are some suggestions for finding the right veterinarian for your dog:


Ask Breeders, Friends and Family for Recommendations
Ask breeders, groomers, family, and friends for suggestions. Breeders are usually well connected with your breed and may be able to provide useful guidance as you search for the right veterinarian for your dog. 


Reach out to Veterinary Clinics in Your Area
Often, simply calling up veterinarian clinics in your neighborhood can help you have a better understanding of what they offer. Make sure to ask about their specialties, the procedures they regularly perform, how long they have been around, and how many veterinarians and technicians are on staff. It's also important to ask about their normal business hours and their emergency care procedure in the event that you need their assistance after hours. 


Compare and contrast medical fees
Medical fees may vary by clinic. The lowest fee may not always be the best choice. Keep in mind that if a clinic’s fees seem really low, you should proceed with caution.  They may not be taking all the steps necessary to provide proper care for your dog. The highest fee clinics may not be better than some of the others.  But, those clinics may offer a greater level of customer service, offer a wider variety of specialty services, or have extended hours.  Most veterinary clinics are happy to explain their services and fees. By asking questions, you can be clearer in not only the differences in cost, but also the differences in equipment, range of care, customer service and more. 


Have a question for Dr. Klein? Email him at CVO@akc.org