The Patient-Technician Bond
By Angelia Oliverei LVT, CVMRT
As a rehabilitation certified licensed veterinary technician working at Pawsitive Steps I typically see on average 6 patients a day and spend around 50 minutes with each patient. We see most of our patients once weekly for the first month and then space out their visits over the course of their rehabilitation. During this time, we develop a relationship and understanding of one another and our patient-technician bond blossoms.
First Day Jitters
When our patients first start attending rehabilitation it can be a new and scary experience for them, like starting your first day at a new school or job. My job is to try to make my patients experience as stress-free as possible. Making our patients feel at ease and as comfortable as possible during their visit is a huge part of our job.
To start, our treatment rooms are all equipped with orthopedic mats and physical therapy mat platforms, which provide added comfort for patients as they will not have to lie down on the hard floor. We use aromatherapy, for example: diffusing calming essential oil blends, Adaptil/Feliway products, and flower essences. Sometimes we will play music for our patients and keep the lights dimmed as well. Lastly we have their favorite treats brought from home for them to enjoy here!
Sometimes it takes a few visits before some of our patients open up to us and then we really get to experience their true personalities. It is always very rewarding once our patients are comfortable working with us and enjoy their visits with us.
As technicians, working with our patients at least once weekly, we tend to develop a relationship that sometimes turns into a strong bond. We learn their likes and dislikes and really what makes them tick. For example, after about 2 months of working with one of my previous patients (who has gone over the Rainbow Bridge, rest in peace Bruno) I learned that he loved listening to music and he loved to sing with me during his laser and massage therapy.
I love when my clients tell me how excited their dog gets when they tell them they are going to therapy and watching them run into the building with joy! It’s the little things that make the patient-technician bond so very special and I cherish them every day.