How to Prepare Your Pet for the Vet (PLUS a free Checklist!)

How to prepare your pet for the vet? And what are all those vaccinations the vet needs to give my pet? Are they all required?

DISCLAIMER: Fire Hydrant Pet Sitting Co., LLC is not a vet or veterinarian. Our information is received from various sources from an internet search, and The Good Old Dog by Faculty of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

How to Prepare Your Pet for the Vet (PLUS a free Checklist!)

Vet Visit Checklist

Like most appointments it is important to be prepared and arrive 5-10 minutes before your appointment in case there is any additional paperwork.

When going to the vet for your pets annual examination, it is always helpful to be prepared! The vet will ask you questions on your pets health, and it will help them better access your furry loved ones needs if you answer them to the best of your knowledge.

What to Bring to the Vet

REMEMBER! When going to the vet, you need to make sure to…

  • Have your dog on a leash
  • A muzzle on your dog if they have a biting history
  • Have your cat in a carrier
  • It is also helpful to bring along any and all previous vet / health records

Questions to be Prepared to Answer

The questions below are some that your vet may ask you regarding your pet’s health. Make sure to be monitoring these things prior to your fur babies appointment. (Questions provided by The Good Old Dog)

  1. Is your pet drinking more water than usual? Less water than usual?
  2. Is your pet urinating more?
  3. Have there been any changes in appetite?
  4. Have they had any challenges eating?
  5. Are there any changes in tolerance to exercise or any form of physical activity?
  6. Does your pet make any new or different noises while breathing?
  7. Has the sounds of their bark or meow changed?
  8. Has your pet experiences episodes of vomiting or diarrhea?
  9. Does your pets coat (fur) look different? Thinner? Dryer? Patchy?
  10. Is your pet as eager to greet people or other dogs?
  11. Have they been limping?
  12. Are there any new bumps/lumps on your pets body?

Pet Vaccinations: What are They and Are They Required?

It is crucial to get your pets vaccinated within the timeframe your vet has provided. If your cats FVRCP expires in three years, make sure to get your pet revaccinated in three years. If your dogs Rabies vaccination expires in one year, make sure to get him/her revaccinated.

Humans may not need vaccinations every year, but dogs are not humans and are different.

Two Required Vaccinations

Below are the two main vaccinations your pet absolutely needs:

  1. Rabies – everywhere is different on how frequent your pet will need to get this shot. Check out your state’s guidelines on how often they mandate a shot.
  2. DHLPP booster for Dogs / FVRCP booster for Cats

What does DHLPP and FVRCP stand for?


D – Distemper, a viral infection of the nervous system
H – Hepatitis, type of liver disease that can result in liver failure
L – Leptospirosis, bacterial infection that affects the liver and kidneys
P – Para-influenza, kennel cough which can lead to pneumonia
P – Parvo, virus that attacks the gastrointestinal tract and immune system


FVR – Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis Virus, a.k.a herpesvirus, is an upper respiratory infection
C – Calicivirus, virus that causes diseases
P – Panleukopenia Virus, a.k.a feline distemper, caused by a virus in the Parvovirus family that affects blood cells in the intestinal tract

Your veterinarian may recommend certain other vaccines, depending mainly on where you live, such as the vaccine for Lyme disease. A kennel cough vaccine may be recommends as well.

The Good Old Dog, by Faculty of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, p. 171


The Good Old Dog, by Faculty of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

Kittens and FVRCP

Featured image and Blog Graphic image by Tima Miroshnichenko

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