Is Dr. Google Your “Other” Veterinarian?
Do you search the internet for veterinary care information for your pet? Here’s a few important tips to remember when surfing to be sure you find accurate medical information that comes from trustworthy sources.
- Most important of all….. Be sure the information comes from a veterinarian
On line you will find an abundance of fun, engaging pet advice; yet for science-based medical facts, look for articles written by a licensed, practicing veterinarian.
- Stick with the professionals
Rest assured professionals stay professional – they don’t discredit other viewpoints. Professionals seek to present new, cutting edge advances in an informative way without degrading conflicting opinions. It is wise to practice a bit of healthy skepticism when reading anything that says your veterinarian is doing something that harms your pet.
- Don’t forget – the internet is an open forum which does not require fact-checks
Too often, material found on the web is not verified or approved by certified professionals. Veterinarians, however, are required to uphold professional ethics as their reputations are at stake. It would be very unwise for veterinarians to risk their medical licenses by advocating unproven recommendations or unnecessary services.
- Steer clear of inflated captions and tabloid-like headlines
If it sounds sketchy, it most likely is not reputable, fact-based information.
- Verify recommendations by checking multiple sources
Confirm what seems like legitimate guidance with other websites authored by veterinarians; here you will find the most science-based, reliable information. Look for references to original research studies and accredited veterinary universities.
- Call a friend – your own veterinarian!
Read something on the internet you are unsure of? Ask your veterinarian! Your veterinary healthcare team knows your pet and can offer suggestions distinctly appropriate to your loved one. Veterinarians welcome the opportunity to explain the “why” behind their recommendations.