Click here to learn more.
Vetstreet. All rights reserved.
Vetstreet does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. See Additional Information ›
In case you haven’t already noticed from my frequent application of the top-ten format in my posts, I love lists — all kinds of lists. I wouldn’t think of going to the market without a checklist nor would I plan my day sans bullet-pointed itinerary, so why wouldn’t I take a list along when I go to the doctor?
Yes, I always take a list when I go see my GP to make sure my memory doesn’t fail me. And you should take a list when it’s time to hit the vet’s. Veterinarians love lists. Well visits, sick visits, whatever. We love 'em. Why? For a few reasons I’ll outline below — in a list, of course.
Having a list allows us to proceed stepwise and logically through a process that might otherwise happen in a more disorderly fashion (as you haphazardly recall the items you really should have included on a list).
Not only does it simply make more sense to do it this way from your vet’s POV (Do her teeth need cleaning? Are those cataracts I’m noticing? Am I cleaning her ears right? Is that too much shedding?), but it also means you’ll be less likely to forget items — and more likely to remember the answers, too.
What’s on your list allows us to home in on issues that are important to you as a pet owner. Not only does that help us treat your pet exactly as you expect us to, it gives us tons of information about you so that we can make better decisions for all your pets in the future.
The reality is that veterinarians have only so much undivided time to offer you. Having a list means it can all get covered efficiently.
During the course of any office visit there are plenty of ways in which a veterinarian can fail to focus on items you might’ve wanted her to cover. We’re only human, you know. Having a list means your vet is much less likely to disappoint you — and your pets.
What’s worse than getting home from the vet and remembering that you needed to mention the occasional head shaking thing your cat does? Having to return a couple of weeks later because the head shaking has become persistent. Not only is an extra visit more expensive, but think of the two weeks of discomfort your cat has suffered.
Lists help keep potentially important issues from slipping through the cracks during a routine — or any — vet appointment. Healthier pets are invariably the outcome.
By the way, lists are extremely useful for medical providers for this very reason. Interested in hearing more about how lists can help your veterinarian become a better practitioner? Reference Dr. Atul Gawande’s excellent book on this subject, The Checklist Manifesto.
And then there’s the issue of all that respect you’ll get from your vet for caring enough to make a list. This strategy truly speaks volumes about how much you care for your pets. Sure, it might also say lots of nasty things about your memory, but who cares? As long as your pets get great care, what does it matter?
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank you for subscribing to Petwire. Look for the latest newsletter each Wednesday.
Purina One's camp for cat lovers includes
a "campfire" made of kibble, cat-friendly
yoga, 20 adoptable…
These adorable dogs and cats were lucky
enough to be welcomed into loving
forever families — and they know it.
Bringing home a new cat? Follow Mikkel
Becker's checklist to ensure your house
is safe and welcoming for your…
Could your feline use a little more daily
exercise? Here are some simple ways to
get him moving that won’t break…
Wonder which dog or cat best fits your
lifestyle? Our new tool will narrow down
more than 300 breeds for you.
No one wants his best friend to be sick in the car. Dr. Andy Roark (literally) reveals the many signs of motion…
The Lagotto Romagnolo was bred to seek
out truffles, the fungi highly prized by
chefs, thanks to his keen sense of…
Take our breed quiz to find your next pet.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.