Finding the right vet for your pet

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If you have a pet, you will inevitably end up at a veterinary clinic. Whether it's to have your new puppy dewormed, your kitten declawed or your pet spayed or neutered -- or an unplanned trip to see an emergency veterinarian -- you'll need to find a vet to do the job.

What a Veterinarian Does

A good veterinarian is more than just a source of pet medicine for a sick animal; they also vaccinate against rabies and other pet diseases, treat wounds, complete surgical procedures and inform pet owners on everything from feeding to breeding pets. A vet doesn't only save the day when your pet is sick or injured; they help maintain your pet's good health with regular checkups. A good vet can also recommend discount pet medicine that can be just as effective as brand-name versions.

Many people don't realize that veterinarian medicine and human health care are closely related. Veterinarians helped research treatments for malaria and yellow fever as well as develop surgical maneuvers like hip replacement that are now common for humans. Both humans and pets gain from the knowledge that veterinarians provide from their observations.

The majority of veterinarians work with small animals, so you don't need to distinguish between a cat veterinarian and a dog veterinarian specialist. However, there are some vets who specialize in horse care or work exclusively with large animals or livestock, and still others who are involved in pet food safety and inspection. These vets often work at the federal level; they examine food processing facilities and ensure that food quality is up to government standards.

Online Veterinary Advice

Today, many people search for pet health answers by looking for an online veterinarian or pet website to get further information. You should always consult with your veterinarian for serious health issues regarding your pet. Ask their opinion about treatments or medicines you read about online. If you don't have a vet, you can also find information on veterinarians in your area and decide which one is best for you. While you may be able to find veterinarians online, you should only take the advice of one with the proper credentials who has physically examined and knows the full health history of your pet.

If you're thinking about becoming a veterinarian, you should know that it's not a glamorous job. Most vets work long hours in a noisy workplace and have to deal with upset pet owners daily. If they treat livestock, they may have to work outdoors in any weather condition or in potentially unsanitary situations. There is always the threat of getting bitten or scratched while tending to the needs of a pet. While they are paid well for their knowledge and services, choosing to become a pet veterinarian is truly a labor of love.