We’ve been on the road lots the last few weeks, starting with NAVC 2017 and then the Western Veterinary Conference in Las Vegas last week. It’s a great chance for us to meet you face to face, and talk about the elephant in the room – your vet peeves.
Talking with veterinary staff at WVC 2017 shed some light on the situation – and interestingly, we heard about some different vet peeves! So what did we learn about at WVC 2017? What really gets under your skin in veterinary practices? Here are the top 5 issues we heard about – and what we can do to fix them!
#5: Clients who think or expect that services are free.
This might sound familiar – it was also the #3 spot at NAVC. It’s a big issue when clients don’t plan properly for veterinary expenses, and the expectation that it’s free doesn’t pay off for anyone.
If this comes up at your veterinary clinic, it may help to set expectations with your clients ahead of time. Wellness plans have been growing in popularity in the veterinary industry, and they can certainly help your clients plan for expenses! By bundling routine services into a predictable monthly fee, and even offering a few options so pet owners can pick what works for them, you can help ensure that pet owners know what to expect and can afford care for their pets.
#4: Clients who assume veterinary medicine is the same as human medicine.
It’s one thing to come in asking about a pet’s rash – but it’s quite another when clients start asking about their own rashes too.
The issue here is that human medicine and veterinary medicine are not the same thing – and it’s a problem when pet owners assume it is. If you’re finding that this comes up often at your practice, remind the pet owner(s) in question that they need to consult their doctor for their own medical concerns.
If they push, remind them of some basic differences in physiology between them and their pet – you could try pointing out how human medication is unsafe for pets and vice versa, or even bring up foods that are safe for humans but not for pets.
The flip side: You may also find that this vet peeve encompasses those who work in human medicine and use this knowledge to apply to their pets. In this case, it could prove helpful to provide your clients with additional information on conditions, breeds, and even medications. ClientEd Online integrates into most practice websites to help ensure that pet owners have access to this information when they need it.
#3: When clients think their pets will get better – even if they don’t finish treatment.
Here’s the thing: infections are really hard to get rid of without the proper treatment.
When this happens, pet owners can end up baffled – but realistically, it comes down to an issue of non-compliance. Before you get your feathers all ruffled, explain to your clients why it’s essential for them to follow all your instructions – and to make sure they remember, provide them with a physical copy. Printouts can help reinforce your instructions so that pet owners have an easier time remembering and following them through to completion.
#2: When clients don’t – or can’t – follow recommendations.
Sometimes, your clients forget instructions – but sometimes, the issue isn’t that they forget.
There are several reasons why pet owners may not be able or willing to follow recommendations – and we’ve talked about a few of them already. If the problem is that pet owners don’t understand the value of a particular recommendation, it can help to provide them with additional information.
#1: Dr. Google.
This vet peeve came in with a solid win for the second time running – and it’s showing no signs of slowing down.
Internet information can be problematic for pet health because just about anyone can post it – whether it’s accurate or not. A WebDVM website can help by providing built-in access to ClientEd Online, giving your clients access to trusted veterinary articles right on your website – so they don’t have to go searching the entire Internet and possibly getting some bad information.That’s all for this round, folks! We can’t wait to see what the top vet peeves are at the American Animal Hospital Association conference in Nashville, TN, Mar. 30 – Apr. 2, 2017!
Have some #vetpeeves that can’t wait? Share them with us on Facebook and Twitter and see what we can do to help!