This guest post comes from Sonia Charry, a former animal hospital staff member who now writes the Big Dog Blog at PawPosse.com. Here, she shares an insider’s view on how to make your vet staff feel appreciated.
Working in an animal hospital can be a difficult job, but the clients make it all worthwhile. If you love your vet staff, here are 5 simple ways to let them know you appreciate them.
1) Say thank you
It sounds obvious, but not many people send thank-you notes anymore. At the hospital where I worked, we all were emotionally invested in our clients. A hand-written thank you note with an update on your pet’s health will make the staff feel appreciated and let them know that your pet is doing better. (Trust me, we worry and think about your pet long after you walk out the door.)
2) Ask if they’ll take a picture with your pet
If someone asked to take a picture with you, wouldn’t you feel like a rock star? Of course. Asking to take a picture of your pet with a staff member or two is a great way to show them how much you value their role in your pet’s life and only takes a minute. Plus, if you include a copy with the thank-you note, you’ll give them something they’ll be happy to hang up and see daily.
3) Recommend the hospital to your friends
Yes, we do look at the new patient forms and see if people filled in how they were referred. It means a lot when you recommend us to a friend. We may not remember to mention it the next time you come in, but it hasn’t gone unnoticed. It’s a big sign of the trust you place in us and we appreciate it.
4) Bring something to eat
When you work at a vet’s office, you often spend long hours on your feet with few breaks and chances to eat. You know that long break in the middle of the day when the staff doesn’t schedule appointments? That’s not a lunch break; that’s when surgeries happen. An animal hospital is a busy place and a snack will help your favorite vet staffer get a boost on the go.
What kind of snacks work in a veterinary hospital? A plate of homemade cookies is kind, but when you’re surrounded by animals all day, your hands get dirty quickly and hair gets everywhere. Individually-wrapped snacks like fun-size candy bars or granola bars are perfect.
5) Be understanding
You wouldn’t believe the crazy things that happen in an animal hospital – my friends and family certainly didn’t! Some days are exceptionally stressful or emotional. If a staff member tells you they’re sorry they’re running behind or just can’t find that piece of paper they had, let them know it’s OK. Something as simple as “I understand, you’ve got a lot going on back there” said with a smile could turn their day around.
As a former animal hospital staffer, I know how much work and love goes into treating every animal that comes through the door. If your vet staff does a good job taking care of you and your pets, please let them know. They deserve to hear it.