Q:

How do you locate a veterinarian for horses?

A:

Quick Answer

The American Association of Equine Practitioner's features a search tool, which lets you find equine veterinarians in your area. Word-of-mouth recommendations from friends, trainers and other knowledgeable horse people are also a valuable.

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Full Answer

When trying out a new equine veterinarian, watch how she handles horses. Equine vets should be comfortable and knowledgeable around horses. If possible, find a veterinarian who only works with horses.

Consider whether you prefer a solo practitioner or a clinic with multiple veterinarians. Solo practitioners can establish a more personal relationship with their clients, but they also have more limited availability. Solo veterinarians are also less likely to have hospital facilities.

Larger clinics may result in a horse seeing a different vet sometimes, but there is usually someone on call for emergencies. Larger practices may also have more modern facilities and more diagnostic tools, while smaller solo practices may need to refer you to another clinic for diagnostic imaging.

Look for a veterinarian who has a good relationship with local farriers. Many equine injuries and illnesses result in or are caused by hoof problems, so veterinarians and farriers need to be able to work together to treat them.

When you set up your first appointment, make sure you understand the diagnosis and instructions, and feel comfortable asking questions.

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