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It happens. We sometimes fail pet owners — in many ways.
And knowing just where we fall down is crucial to understanding how to serve you better — but it takes your feedback to make it happen.
That said, here are my top 10 observations as to how some vets are prone to disappoint their clients.
I once confessed that I hate the phone so much that it’s the last thing on my list of things to do at work. And how some readers responded! Hate mail is not a strong enough term for some of the snipes that I have received.
Yet it’s true. The phone is frustrating, especially since some clients take advantage of this unpaid period of time — and thus why we sometimes fail those who deserve timely callbacks. I think that we should work like lawyers, billing for time spent. I don't know about fairness, but it’s a safe bet that this method would buy you quicker return calls!
I know, I know. You want better office hours that include late afternoons, weekends, etc. But what’s a vet who wants a normal life to do? Still, I totally get where you’re coming from!
We can be a tad in hyper-drive, which can be rather off-putting. I know this personally because I have to put my own brakes on all the time. Luckily, I have great staff members who always remind me to take it slower.
It’s a common complaint: "I know this is what you want me to do, Doc, but I only have this much available credit." Many vets don't do a good job of talking clients through their options. In most cases, this is because it’s an inevitably painful process involving stress — money is hard to talk about in the context of a pet’s life! — and lots of time.
Scheduling re-check exams for ongoing illnesses is one thing, and many of us do that pretty well. But there are other issues — such as making sure that weight loss is happening or ensuring that slightly elevated liver enzyme levels aren't climbing — where we may fall down on the job. We’ve gotten a lot better at keeping more detailed records with the advent of computerization, but we’re still on the steep slope of the learning curve.
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