On busy days, a veterinary clinic waiting room can be a wild place. Keeping everyone calm, quiet, and comfortable can be a challenge, but it’s so important when you’re dealing with sick, injured, or upset animals. Planning ahead is vital to ensure that your waiting room experience is a good one, and making sure you have the products you need is the first step. Veterinary supplies go far beyond syringes and “cones of shame”: sometimes the most mundane items can be life-savers. Here are five items your waiting room shouldn’t be without.
Accidents happen, especially when pets are anxious or stressed. If you have to scramble to the back room or a distant supply closet for cleaning supplies, it becomes a much bigger deal than it has to be for everyone involved. A large, convenient supply of paper towels right out in the waiting room will make cleanup easier for you, less embarrassing for owners, and more pleasant for other waiting clients.
Along similar lines, invest in a good odor-removal spray, and keep it handy in the waiting room (out of reach of children and pets, of course). Getting rid of smells quickly isn’t just for the comfort of human clients, it also prevents a chain reaction of marking from other waiting pets.
Provide water for humans and animals. A stressed pet can be a thirsty pet, and a little drink can make all the difference. For the owners, access to a water cooler is a thoughtful touch, which can make the waiting experience a little easier.
A good range of educational materials gives waiting humans something to read, but can also have a strong impact on the well-being of their pets. People want to take good care of their animals, but myths, “folk wisdom,” and general misinformation unfortunately still abound in pet care, so education is extremely important. Provide pamphlets on feeding, humane training methods, exercise, insurance, and veterinary first aid, and you may change a pet’s life.
Making your practice a positive place for pets can be a challenge, when the unfamiliar sights and smells, occasionally uncomfortable procedures, and the presence of other strange animals can stress a sensitive pet. A tasty treat goes a long way towards distraction and can help animals associate your office with happy times.
Creating a welcoming, easy waiting experience for your patients and their pet-parents is one of the best things you can do to encourage repeat visits and create satisfied clients. Having the right supplies on hand can go a long way towards keeping your waiting room happy and peaceful for pets, their people, and you.