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What qualifications should I look for in a vet?

What qualifications should I look for in a vet?

You adore your pet and want to make sure that the veterinarian to choose to take care of them has the right qualifications for the job. But what kind of qualifications should you be looking for?

Choosing the Right Vet

Choosing a new veterinarian for your pet can be a stressful experience. There are so many things for you to consider. Will you like the person? are their hospital hours in line with their availability? How conveniently are they located in relation to your home? Beyond these day-to-day practicalities, however, there are a number of certifications and qualifications an individual vet can hold too though.

But what do these certifications mean? Here are some of the most common.

Mandatory U.S. Veterinary Qualifications

When you're searching for a vet, make sure that the professional you are considering is licensed to practice both in the U.S and in your state. You may also want to take some time to find out if other people working in the hospital are licensed, like registered veterinary technicians. Visit a prospective vet's office and take a peek around. If you don't see the certifications hanging in your reception area, just ask to see their licenses or contact your state's board of veterinary medicine for more information. 

Here are the two certifications you are looking for:

DVM (VMD) - Doctor of Veterinary Medicine - The first thing that you need to check is that your vet is qualified to practice in the U.S. When a person graduates from an American veterinary school they receive a DVM—Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree (sometimes called a VMD degree). All vets practicing in the U.S. must have a DVM degree. A DVM degree means that the person you are considering is, in fact, a qualified veterinarian and is fully qualified to perform the duties of the profession.

State Veterinary Licensing - In order to practice veterinary medicine, some states also require a veterinarian to pass a state-specific examination. These exams typically test the vet's knowledge of the state's laws and regulations governing veterinary medicine. In order to maintain a state veterinary license, vets must obtain continuing education and may need to renew their license on a regular basis (often every 3 years).

Vets That May Require A Referral

Veterinary Specialists - A board-certified veterinary specialist is a veterinarian who has completed additional training in a specific area of veterinary medicine and has passed an examination that evaluates their knowledge and skills in that specialty area. If your pet is unwell, your regular vet may refer you to a veterinary specialist. There are 41 distinct specialties within veterinary medicine ranging from behavior to ophthalmology and surgery to dentistry. You may be referred to a veterinary specialist if diagnosing or treating your pet's health issue requires specialized equipment and/or expertise that your primary care veterinarian does not have. Veterinary specialists take pride in working with your primary care veterinarian to provide your pet with the best care possible.

At Ambassador Dog & Cat Hospital, our veterinary professionals are committed to offering you and your pet the best possible veterinary care. Contact us today to learn more about our selection of services and our veterinary team's qualifications.

New Patients Welcome

Ambassador Dog & Cat Hospital is accepting new patients! Our veterinary team is passionate about the health of pets in our Los Angeles community. Contact us today to book your first appointment.

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(213) 384-1255