Since the dog cannot tell us what is wrong veterinary medicine relies on us, the owners to be able to verbalize the signs and symptoms we have observed in order to pin down diagnostic possibilities.
Be knowledgeable about your pet! Regular grooming allows you to check for lumps and bumps that might be hidden under his coat. Make sure to keep track of your dog’s regular routine so that you recognize anything out of the ordinary. Know when and how much he eats. Know what his regular bowel movement is like and how frequently he has one. Know the colour of his urine. Monitor his behavior and know what is usual and unusual. Be aware of things that might cause future problems both in his actions and in his enviroment.
When speaking be clear and concise in your descriptions. Try to keep emotions at bay and do not rely on memory. State all your concerns and be prepared to answer any questions in detail.
If you don't understand something or disagree with treatment discuss it openly, fairly and honestly. If you know your pet and your vet knows his business, together you'll work as an awesome team!
Last be sure to go that extra mile for your vet clinic! Donate those extra towels, leashes, dog crates etc that you no longer use. Don’t forget the staff! Bringing them in Timmies coffee & timbits. This can go a long way to building good relationships and having them go that extra mile for you on that hopefully rare occasion when you really need them to.