Why turn to our online vets?

Always wanted to know why an online consultation could be right for you? Here, one of our vets answers all!

Because my vets are busy…

Do you hate to bother the vet? Do you love your veterinary team but feel there is never enough time? Do you have more questions but always seem to run out of time or nerve? Or just forget until you are driving away what it was you wanted to ask?

There have always been time pressures in practice, fitting everyone in with the care that they’d like and that vets want to give. Implementing Covid-safe ways of working have put further strain on consultations, so that everything takes so much longer but there is still less time to talk.

Our online vets don’t work to replace your primary team, but we’re here to support and enhance them. You can ask your vets to provide you with your pet’s history, or you can simply brief us when you book and when we speak, as to what’s going on. You can then book time with us to ask those questions, clarify uncertainties, talk about options. We can consult, inform, discuss and advise, whether it’s to help you see the woods for the trees, the broader picture or the smallest details.

We’ll inform your own vets of our advice to you, to assist them in caring for your pet – joining up the dots, so to speak. And yes, that’s fine; don’t worry that they’ll be offended. You are entitled to seek an additional opinion and we are duty-bound as veterinary colleagues to connect for your benefit. It’s a win-win situation.

Because it keeps coming back…

Some conditions just never seem to go away: sore ears that flare up from time to time; licking and nibbling and chewing and scratching that settles and flares, improves with treatment, returns to haunt you; upset tummies, dogs with diarrhoea; cats that keep vomiting. Your pet has been seen by your vet several times, you’ve had treatments and tests but really – can’t they fix this?

Maybe you’ve seen different people each time and can’t quite see that there is a master plan for getting to the bottom of things. Maybe you’ve tried a variety of treatments or had different advice. This kind of scenario is depressing: your hopes that it’s sorted are raised and then dashed, and in the wee small hours you worry – about health, about funds, about what it all means.

Chances are, your vet team have indeed been working through a logical sequence of ruling in and ruling out likely causes and each vet has time to explain what the plan for today is but not, perhaps, to review the past and discuss the future.

Sometimes just a little more time is needed, to see the bigger picture and clarify where you should go next. Sometimes problems can only be managed and never cured, but always, always, knowledge is power.

Our online vets can help by consulting with you, solely to support you with the knowledge you need to go forward. Without the bother of a journey or the worry of your stressed pet, we can look at the picture to date, advise and inform you and help to empower you with a plan for the future.

This also applies, crucially, to chronic conditions. Pets with arthritis, kidney problems, liver issues, allergies etc can all be supported from the comfort of your own home. We know that tiny changes that seem unimportant can actually be really important. It’s a long-term condition, there’s no point in having regular check ins as the vet can’t do any more, can they? Often, we can. From the comfort of your own home, without the extra stress on your pet and with that extra time, we can explore with you the little details that make for a huge improvement in quality of life. If more investigations might be warranted we can discuss this in detail and help you make the right decision for you and your pet, keeping your primary practice informed every step of the way.

Because I wonder if that’s really necessary…

Have you ever worried whether the treatment or the tests that your veterinary practice is recommending are actually necessary? Been daunted by what’s involved? Or, not wanting to be disloyal, wondered if you’ve been advised to do that which is profitable for them? Wishing you had a vet-friend who could give you some independent advice on the quiet?

Well, you don’t need to be “on the quiet” and our online vet team can be friends-for-a-day. We always work with our colleagues in your physical practice, by sharing with them the information we give to you. It’s professional, it’s courteous, it’s important for your pet’s best care – and it’s also absolutely fine for you to request our veterinary time to talk. But because we don’t work for your physical practice, so you can get independent advice.

An appointment with our vets will give you private time to talk over what’s happening with your pet. We can explore the potential benefits of tests or treatments, remembering that the starting point for your primary vets is generally to err on the side of caution and to offer you the most comprehensive care. Then we can explore what the costs might be in the broader sense, both for you and your pet. Remember that costs come in several guises: they may be financial, but they can be emotional too, or demand a commitment from you in terms of time or effort you aren’t willing or able to give. It’s okay for you to have limits and we’ll help you feel comfortable sharing them.

You should be able then to return to your practice, supported with information and with the confidence to find the right way forward for all concerned….

…the benefits of online video consultations!