What is it like to get a veterinary exam?

Many people always question what the exam fee entails. Well here is the step by step of how it goes.

Once the front staff greets you they will escort you into an exam room and weigh your pet, or if it is a larger animal they will be weighed in the lobby.

In the exam room the receptionist will check in your pet and enter the weight. The technician is then notified that you have arrived and they come into the exam room to triage.

The next step is getting the history. Common questions are

–        What food are they eating?

–        Any vomiting, diarrhea, coughing, sneezing?

–        Are they currently on any medications?

–        Are there any other concerns that you have?

The technician will then enter the history into the computer and then perform a TPR. TPR stands for Temperature, Pulse & Respiration. They will then go to non-vitals such as body weight score, dental health and diet recommendation, nutritional consult and overall appearance

Once this is also entered into the computer they leave the room and go get the scheduled doctor. They brief the doctor on the condition and concerns of the animal as well as inform them of any vaccines or tests that are due.

The doctor will then enter the exam room and perform their own physical exam, palpating the abdomen, looking in the ears with the otoscope and eyes with the opthalmascope, checking the mouth/teeth and listening to the heart and lungs and checking the lymphnodes.  At this time they will then go over any concerns that you have.  Depending on the condition of the animal, medications are then prescribed and/or vaccines administered.

Sometimes your pets may also be due for blood work or a fecal exam. If they are due for blood work we may then bring them back into our treatment room where a Veterinary Assistant will hold your pet while the technician draws the blood. The assistant then spins the blood in our centrifuge and packages it with a requisition form.  If they are due for a fecal exam you will often be asked to bring in a recent sample with you to your appointment. The veterinary assistant will put it into a fixative container where it is preserved in a liquid and then sent with a requisition form to the lab.

Depending on the test, the lab will have the results to us in 1-3 days. The technician or doctor will then review the results and patient’s history then call you to go over the results with you and organize the next steps (if required) from there.

If your pet is coming in with a specific issue, let’s say an ear infection, we will place a follow-up in the system and contact you within the next couple days to check on your pet and allow you to ask any questions regarding their issue or medications they may be on.  At the time of discharge, it may also be recommended that we see your pet back for a recheck appointment. This is to see the progress that has been made with the medication or treatment.