Being a veterinarian, a veterinary technician, or any other professional in a veterinary hospital has its challenges. It is important to identify some of the difficulties that everyone in the community faces. This article outlines some of the challenges that veterinarians face on a regular basis in veterinary hospitals and clinics. It is our hope that this helps you realize that your struggles are valid, and you are not alone!
The Familial Role of Pets
Most pet owners consider their pets to be equal members of their family. Veterinarians respect this and assume responsibility. Thus, veterinarians often treat their patients just as if they were real people. When veterinary surgeons are dealing with extreme cases of sickness or injury, they feel immense self-induced pressure as well as pressure from pet owners to provide exceptional veterinary treatment or surgery.
Treatment Logistics and Considerations
When cases of illness or injury are particularly challenging, it can be hard for veterinarians to make decisions regarding euthanasia. Even merely suggesting the idea can be difficult for veterinarians to do considering how loved and valued pets are by their owners. Many owners do not even want to consider this option, even when treatment or surgery is not feasible, or the success outcome is highly unlikely.
Owners love their pets and want the best care possible for them. Sometimes they can become overwhelmed or frustrated if their pet is in pain or suffering. They can sometimes be rude or even abusive to staff members when they have unrealistic standards or expectations that are impossible to meet. Owners can also be problematic not by caring too much, but by caring too little for the health and happiness of their pets. Veterinarians may sometimes encounter owners that try to cut veterinary expenses and treat their pets with negligence.
Veterinary hospital staff members, regardless of role or position, are terribly busy and often work long hours each day. Pet owners expect veterinary hospitals to provide around-the-clock patient care and be on-call in the event of an emergency. Veterinarians are very dedicated to their patients and will often try to accommodate their clients by working on weekends and holidays. This can lead to a poor work-life balance and an overall worsened mental health.