Next to you and your family, a veterinarian is the most important person in your cat's life. You want to make sure your veterinarian is giving the best care possible because he or she is responsible for your cat's health and well-being. So how do you go about doing this?
One of the best ways to find a vet is through the recommendation of a friend. If you know someone in your area with a cat, ask them what clinic they use and what they think of the vet. The phone book and internet are also good places to start your search. Select a few practices in your area and call to see if you can come past and have a look. You don't need to bring your cat for this initial visit. It will help you to get a feel for the clinic. You're going to be entrusting your cat's life to these people so it's important that you feel comfortable with them.
Here are some things to take into consideration:
Is the facility clean?
Are the staff professional?
Are they friendly and approachable?
What is their policy for emergency care?
Do they offer boarding or grooming services?
Most veterinary clinics have one vet and several vet technicians. However, group practices are increasingly common because they allow several skill sets to be available to the patients. One is not necessarily better than the other, so use your judgment to find the ideal type of clinic for you and your cat.
Cost is also an important factor in determining the treatment of your cat's health. Veterinary care can be expensive, so it's best to ask about options such as pet insurance once you have found the clinic you like.
In the end, take a tip from your cat and follow your instincts. You want a veterinarian who cares deeply about animals, especially your cat. Your vet will frequently be your first line of contact for many of the trials and tribulations that can arise when you own a cat. Choose someone who allows you to communicate openly and honestly.