New Pet? 7 Questions to Ask Your Family Veterinarian

Your new family member may be furry with whiskers and a tail, or have scales, hooves or even wings. If you're the proud new owner of a new pet, chances are you'll have best results integrating your new pet into your family when you include a veterinarian on your team.

"Having a new pet isn't like having a new toy," cautions your veterinarian. "It's just like having a kid. Some people get animals without knowing what they really need. There may be tests and vaccines the animal needs. You have to be sure the pet gets everything it needs, so seek an experienced veterinarian."

Problems can occur early during your pet's integration with your family, including any existing pets. Your veterinarian can help you with this. You will want to discuss foods, overfeeding and underfeeding, activity levels and exercise needs, vaccinations and dental care early in your role as new pet owner.

The earlier these issues are discussed with your vet the greater the likelihood that a pet's specific needs and overall good health will be met. Consider an open conversation with the veterinarian you plan to use as your wellness consultant. Write down your questions and bring them with you to your initial and future visits. Remember to include these important questions during an initial "interview" with your veterinarian:

  1. What experience do you have with pets like mine?
  2. What other types of pets do you care for?
  3. Can you advise me on the best way to care for my pet?
  4. What vaccination schedule do you suggest and why?
  5. What dental and grooming habits do you suggest and why?
  6. What food and nutrition recommendations would you make for my pet? What daily calorie intake and exercise routine does my pet require for optimum health?
  7. Do you provide round-the-clock emergency care and if not, can you recommend someone and provide me with their contact information?

Asking your new veterinarian specific questions like those above will help you focus your visit and achieve specific results during the visit. Having written questions before a visit can help you remember them in order to get the information you need the first time.

If you would like to schedule a check-up with one of our veterinarians, call us today to make an appointment!

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  • "The staff is wonderful and caring and the doctors are fantastic. Everything was explained clearly and the dogs were treated with care."
    Keri Anderson Burk
  • "I love the Southwest Animal Hospital. When our dog was diagnosed with cancer several years ago the staff there did everything in their power to save him but in the end, it was in Gods hands. They were so compassionate and caring. We will never take our other two dogs anywhere else."
    Patti Averion
  • "Caring and loving employees! Clean atmosphere... I would recommend taking your lil creature here!!!! :)"
    Maria Lynn Knigge
  • "SWAH saved our family fur baby, Morrison, with emergency procedures. At 11 pm and took care of him like he was their own. GREAT staff! Don't know what we would have done without your team."
    Heather Ann Sale
  • "Rommel & Monty are my best buddies and for their health & grooming, I trust no one else! These people are the best!"
    Patrick Caldwell