The biggest thing I have learned is that Veterinarians are not out to ‘just get your money’ as many people believe. Yes, those blood tests are for a reason. Yes, you need to make sure that you get Bordetella to protect your dog from respiratory infections from grooming, boarding or dog parks. And yes, no matter how big or small the animal you have, they all require lots of commitment to maintaining their health. They are worth it, after all!
A lot of people think that owning a cat is simpler than owning a dog. Counting out the extensive house training (cats usually adapt to litter boxes or going outside to eliminate quicker), cats need just as much care as a dog- including brushing their teeth! Nutrition is a big issue as well. You should not free-feed your animal (leave out unportioned food throughout the day for your animal to eat) or give them table scraps. You should chose a balanced (animals need veggies, protein, grains, etc. too!) food for them that is measured out, twice a day. Overweight pets have increased health risks just like humans, which includes diabetes, joint pain and liver problems *Fact: When your animals eat dry food (you should always consult with your Veterinarian about the type of food specific to your animal) it helps to prevent plaque build up, but does not replace brushing their teeth*. I have discovered that I am very interested in pet nutrition, so we will see where that takes me.
Aside from a very tiny portion of all the information I have learned, I have also found that being a Veterinary Receptionist is not something you learn overnight. It’s not just answering the phones, taking appointments and greeting clients. You need to:
*Call in and fill prescriptions (you have to learn all the medical terminology and treatment/prescriptions including names/uses…. You also have to know the required blood work or exams needed to fill certain prescriptions)
*File scanned and faxed documents
*Handle emergency situations (know what IS an emergency, that is hard because everything that happens to a owner’s animal out of the ordinary is an emergency to them!)
*Keep track of everything that is happening in the hospital (surgeries, exams, boarding, grooming, etc.)
*Call previous-day clients to make notes in their file on how their pet is doing and also call for future appointment reminders and answer any questions or concerns they may have
*Answer the phones- making appointments, taking notes for doctors; it’s all about having the more details the better
*Greet clients that come in (making sure an exam sheet/boarding/drop-off sheet is ready for their pet so a technician can start their appointment)
*Make sure shipments go out/received
……… And so much more!
BUT, I am learning so much more about the care of animals than I thought I would within these couple of weeks… It’s making me that much more excited to become a Veterinary Technician! You can never know everything in this field, you are forever learning and I love that!