What Should You Do When You Think Your Vet Might be Missing Something

By December 21 | See Comments

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There is a universal belief that when it comes to the health of our pets, vets know best. This is not untrue. Vets have the expertise, experience, and knowledge to help your pet medically. But you know your pet inside and out. You care for him on a daily basis and you spend more time with him than anyone else. So what can you do when you feel like your vet might have missed something in his exam? The answer’s quite simple actually – communication. Your vet is a medical professional so your concerns won’t anger him.Humans make mistakes all the time by overlooking certain things. Vets are also just human. Good vets won’t fault you when you question their judgment or communicate your concerns. There are however a few things that you should keep in mind when talking to your vet about delicate matters such as these.

  1. Your attitude matters.We’re not right all the time. If you want your vet to keep an open mind, you should be able to do so too. Perhaps your vet made a mistake. But perhaps he didn’t and your pet just has a complicated case. Perhaps he’ll need more tests and more advanced equipment to figure out exactly what’s wrong with your pet. Keep an open mind when having a conversation with your vet.
  2. Always be prepared.You know your pet best. Make sure that you have facts to support the fact that you think your vet is wrong. Maybe you know something about your pet that he doesn’t yet. Come prepared and always be ready to give your vet reasons behind your assumptions. Maybe your pet is displaying a different set of symptoms than he was the last time you spoke to your vet. You must have done your homework online before coming to the vet. Mention conditions that you may find especially concerning.Your pet’s condition is likely to change. Don’t expect all of your questions to be answered over the phone. Be patient.
  3. Go with what your gut tells you.If you’re still worried about your vet’s diagnosis, it’s always safe to ask for a second opinion. Ask your vet about whether a referral to a specialist might be something your pet needs. If you don’t want to have this conversation with your vet, go ahead and schedule an appointment with a specialist yourself. Make sure that you have all of your pet’s previous medical records and blood work so the new vet can have a clearer view into your pet’s medical past. Treatment and diagnosis also become significantly easier when the previous medical records are provided.
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