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When we head to the vet, usually we are in such a rush we forget something - especially in an emergency. However, there are a few things we should try to remember to take with us on every visit.

Some items we need to bring actually help the vet, help us. Even if you are just going for a wellness exam or a check-up, you should be taking certain items with you to make sure that your vet is in the know about everything 

So, prep these things the next time you're getting ready for your pet's vet trip.

Consider why you are going 

Think about why you are going, for example, is your dog dry heaving? If so, maybe take some of their food with you or even a urine sample. 

If there is something specifically wrong, take whatever you think may be important or significant to your pet's condition. It could be a defining factor that helps the vet uncover what is going on much faster. 

Things you need to take to the vet

So, what do we recommend as a standard to prepare for the vet? Here are 5 things we think you should be considering every vet visit. 

#1. Veterinary Medical Records

If you are switching from one vet to another, if you have moved, or for any other reason, you will need to bring all of your veterinary records. This applies even if you do not have detailed copies of the records. Take what you have.

Your new vet will be able to call up your previous veterinarian to get more information. Getting them the proper medical records will give them a full scope of your pet’s health and will allow the vet to best treat your pet.

#2. Stool Sample 

Even if your pet is not showing symptoms of any digestive issues, take a stool sample with you. This includes annual/ bi-annual checkups, as these usually include parasite testing, which requires a stool sample.

Stool samples should always be collected within 24 hours of the appointment. Even a small sample will do. 

If you have cats, you can collect a stool sample from the litter box!

#3. Urine Sample

Urine samples are important too, especially for any urinary issues or hydration issues. Urine samples might seem gross when you have to collect them, but collecting them gives your vet plenty of information on your pet. 

Most vets will offer a urine kit for free. Otherwise, you can just use a plastic container that has a tight-fitting or air-tight lid. You want to catch the urine straight from the animal, so try to slide it underneath them when they go to urinate. 

While it might seem gross, you'll want to keep it in the fridge until your appointment. Gathering the urine more than four hours before your visit can result in a contaminated sample, so if you can, try to get a sample just before your appointment. 

With cats, some vets will provide a non-absorbent litter you can put in your litter tray to collect the urine sample.

#4. Food & Treats 

Bring samples of your pet's food and treats to the vet. For long stays at the vet, it is best for your pet to have their food with them, especially if your pet has fasted for an operation. 

If your vet stay is not a long one, you should either bring packaging with you or take pictures of the food and treats they eat regularly. Most vets will need to see what is going on in your pet to get an idea of your pet’s health. 

Seeing the food and treats they eat will give them an idea of their nutrition intake and will look at any weight issues. Your vet can offer you advice if their current diet is not serving them well, or give you better options if needed.

#5. Medications & Questions

Always bring any medicine your pet is taking on a regular basis to your vet. They will need to see what medicines your dog is taking to reference any side effects, to see if any new medicine needs to be taken, or even if it is not necessary anymore. 

You should also bring a list of questions. Often we think of so many things we want to ask, but when we are in the moment, we can easily forget what we were going to say, so write down a list of the things you want to ask, and take it with you, so you are covered.


Lizz Caputo is a Content Strategist at Figo, animal enthusiast, and owner of a rescued senior American Bully. Her hobbies include checking out new restaurants in her area, boxing, and petting dogs of all shapes and sizes.

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