Ever wonder why your vet insists on checking your pet at least once a year? Sometimes twice a year? Gee, you were just there with your pet not too long ago (or so it seems!) and it is such a hassle to get the pet into the car and over to the vet…..
Veterinarians, and the practice of veterinary medicine, is overseen by a set of regulations, called the California Practice Act. Adherence to these regulations is monitored by a state agency which acts on behalf of consumers to protect them and their pets. Veterinarians and veterinary hospitals are routinely inspected by this consumer agency. Veterinary practices must abide by these regulations, one of which is…………………………….
YOU, YOUR PET, AND THE VETERINARIAN MUST HAVE A VALID VETERINARY CLIENT-PATIENT RELATIONSHIP.
THIS MEANS WE MUST EXAMINE THE PET AT THE VERY MINIMUM ONCE A YEAR.
The regulations are designed to protect the health and welfare of the patient, and protect the consumer. They provide a minimum standard so that consumers can have an assurance that there is a baseline standard of care that limits the chances of malpractice or negligent care.
WE CANNOT TREAT A PET THAT WE HAVE NOT SEEN, BECAUSE WE WOULD BE IN VIOLATION OF THE VETERINARY PRACTICE ACT.
This means that if you have a cat with a runny nose, and another cat with a runny nose and sneezing, we cannot just automatically send meds for the other pet without examining the other pet.
Though at some times the regulations seem tedious, and bothersome, they are designed to protect you and your pet’s health, by preventing mistakes that could potentially happen because the veterinarian doesn’t know the patient’s health issues. So, grit your teeth, and smile at the receptionist–(she didn’t make the rules, but she does have to remind you of them)–so its not his or her fault — and bring Fido or Fluffy on in. It’s for your protection, and your pet’s protection, and continued good health.