In many ways, your cat’s relationship with her vet is the second most important relationship in her life — after your good self, of course. (Well, that’s also discounting a feline’s ongoing affair with the treats stash.) When things run perfectly in the cat world, this cat-vet relationship ensures that your cat stays on top of any health issues and helps her live a long and charmed life.
But what happens when something seems amiss with your cat and your vet doesn’t seem to be making any progress in diagnosing or curing the ailment? Is it best to continue to put faith in the vet’s abilities?
Or does there come a time when you have to seriously think about ending even a long-standing relationship with your cat’s vet?
Unfortunately, cats cannot speak or convey accurately what feels wrong with them, so often times it seems like there’s a degree of guesswork in diagnosing a sick cat. When my cat appeared to totally lose her appetite, I had two different vets at the same facility on two separate occasions give me wildly different opinions on what was going on, including one who was convinced that she was suddenly diabetic. (Long story short: She was a little congested and an air humidifier that I’d bought for myself to battle the dry heat in the apartment cured her in about three seconds after she sniffed the mist.)
In my experience, when your cat seems healthy and happy, your relationship with your vet is a good one. But when your cat gets sick, anything but an overnight cure causes you to question whether the vets knows what they’re doing. (Never go down the wormhole of reading online reviews about vets.)
You want the best for your cat, but sometimes I think you have to go with your gut instincts when it comes to your vet situation.
Ask yourself questions like does the vet seem really invested in your cat’s welfare or do they appear to be going through the motions? Does the vet answer your questions — however far-fetched they may seem — or are they dismissed with curt answers? How much money have you spent on a course of treatment (and have you been given an estimate that makes you feel like you’re being taken advantage of)?
Ultimately, choosing to switch vets might seem like a drastic move — but most times there’s a lot of value in a second opinion.