What is “Text a Vet”? + Veterinary Text Message Templates
Kyle Kuczynski
Kyle Kuczynski
MessageDesk Co-Founder & CMO
Updated: Jun 05, 2022

Learn About "Text a Vet" Veterinary Text Messaging for Animal Hospitals and Clinics and Get 15 Vet Text Templates

Veterinary practices across the country are seeing a surge in business. But for many vet offices, this boom in business isn’t without challenges.

More vets, vet staff, and practice managers are finding that they need help with:

  • Providing pet owner service in reasonable timeframes
  • Reducing call volume and phone call time
  • Scheduling and sending appointment reminders
  • Streamlining day-to-day client conversations

To solve these problems, veterinary offices are turning to "text a vet" veterinary text messaging services.

I explain why and how and cover the following in this article:

  1. What is “Text a Vet” veterinary text messaging
  2. Why texting helps veterinary practices keep connected to pet owners
  3. 10 ways your vet practice can use “Text a Vet” veterinary text messaging
  4. 15 veterinary templates for texting

Read on for more.

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What is “Text a Vet” Veterinary Text Messaging?

Text a vet veterinary text messaging is business text messaging for veterinary practices and animal hospitals. Text a vet makes it easy for veterinarians and their staff to text with animal owners. It works great for texts about appointments, reminders, payments, pet health, and more from an existing business phone number, landline, or new local phone number.

Why Texting Helps Veterinary Practices Keep Connected to Pet Owners

As demand increases, front desk and office staff often struggle with call management, engaging customers, and reducing call volume.

This is where veterinary text messaging can help smooth daily vet messaging.

It’s a more efficient, simpler, and faster way to communicate with pet and animal owners.

But how does texting compare to email and voice and how should it fit into your veterinary practices or clinic?

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Texting vs. phone calls

It's true that nothing beats a phone call for immediate connection. But there’s a time and place for voice calls and many people now prefer texting for vet messages.

In fact, some 67% of people prefer texting with veterinary practices over having phone conversations. And even if you or your staff leave a voicemail, 1 in 4 pet owners won’t listen to it.

Granted, there are always good reasons to make phone calls versus sending a text.

Longer conversations that require explanation and intonation should be your deciding factor. Discussing pet symptoms and treatments might need a phone call.

But calling isn’t ideal if you’re just sending transactional and information messages to pet owners.

Texting vs. email

Email is the most widely-adopted form of business communication in the world. But it comes with some drawbacks.

Email engagement rates are on the decline and emails only get around a 20% open rate.

It’s because email is a saturated communication channel. Your average pet owner sends and receives around 246 emails per day. So it’s likely for emails to get lost or go unread.

Pet owners often prefer immediate messaging. So timing is important when letting someone know about their pet.

This is where SMS text messing can help. When it comes to delivery rates, open rates, click-through, and response rates text messaging has clear advantages.

For example:

  1. With A2P 10DLC it’s possible to achieve 100% delivery rates with text messages.
  2. Text messages have up to a 98% open rate.
  3. Response rates for text messages are around 45%.
  4. Texting is more conversational and convenient for pet owners than email.
  5. Texting is just as scalable as email for reaching a bunch of people.

Suggested Article: Top 10 Advantages and Benefits of Texting

How Texting Saves Time for Emergency Pet Hospital of Redlands

Read how texting helps Redlands Emergency Vet keep connected to pet owners.

10 Ways Your Vet Practice Can Use “Text a Vet” Veterinary Text Messaging

1. Text as a team from an SMS inbox using your existing business phone number

What’s the number one way your veterinary business can improve communication with pet owners? It’s by connecting your existing business phone line to a shared team SMS inbox.

SMS team inboxes allow multiple people to access, read and respond to texts on a single vet text line.

When teams use their personal phones and phone numbers to text, there's no way to unify conversations or maintain oversight.

But SMS inboxes solve this problem.

Everyone gets access to a unified view for texting with an SMS inbox. This allows you and your team to filter, organize and assign text conversations as a team.

And inboxes like MessageDesk plug into any existing business phone line. So all texting happens from a mobile app or desktop computer, all on the same phone number.

There are a bunch of great business texting services out there. The trick is determining which one is right for your vet practice.

MessageDesk Team Inbox

2. Start more conversations with pet owners from your website

There are many ways to use your website to generate leads. But one of the easiest is to just make it possible for pet owners to text you and your team.

The best way to do this is by adding a click-to-text button to your website.

What is click-to-text?

It’s an easy way for pet owners to message a vet for free over the phone (but with texting). It usually appears as a button, chatbot, or clickable phone number listed on your website.

“Click-to-text” can come in several different forms:

  • A linked phone number on your website
  • A website chatbot
  • Embedded button on your website
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3. Save templates and personalize messages

Time savings start with text message templates, tags, media, and links. When you text as a team, different staff members will send the same or similar messages over and over again to different pet owners.

This is where advanced text messaging features, like personalization tags, can help.

Don’t just say hello or hey at the beginning of your message. Instead, use tags to automatically insert a client or pet’s name into a pre-saved text message template.

“Hey {{ FirstName }}” would turn into “Hey Ben” automatically, without having to type a name.

Here’s an example text using personalization tags in a text message template:

Hi {{ FirstName }}, this is {{ OrganizationName }} confirming you have an appointment on 3/25 at 3pm for {{ PetName }}. Thanks for scheduling your appointment with us, and if you have any questions, reply to this text. We’ll see you and {{ PetName }} then!

Simple, personalized gestures like these can increase pet owner satisfaction, save time and help keep messaging consistent across your entire team.

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4. Text pictures of pets and add links for real-time updates on pet health

Texting makes it easier for both pet owners and vet staff to connect with each other.

Veterinary text messaging platforms like MessageDesk also make it easy to text links and images of pets via MMS messages.

Having this capability is what makes text messaging ideal for sharing updates on pet health and status with anxious pet owners.

Texting features like these can make the difference when a pet owner is trying to text a veterinarian and get an urgent update or share critical pet information.

And the best thing? These kinds of conversations with pet owners about their pet’s health and wellness can happen at scale without a phone call or email.

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5. Collect information with webforms

Texting links to online website forms makes it possible to collect info. You can also direct pet owners to consent forms, application forms, check-in forms, etc.

Some text messaging platforms (like MessageDesk) even offer website contact forms that automatically text pet owners when they submit information.

All you need to start collecting information from your customers is to link your form in a text message.

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6. Reduce no-shows and send appointment reminders

Sometimes, pet owners miss appointments. This wastes a lot of time.

So, the more you and your staff can do to send reminders and stop no-show appointments in advance, then the more efficient and more profitable your practice will ultimately be.

When it comes to appointment reminders, 67% of pet owners would rather get texts than emails or phone calls. So if you're still using veterinary appointment reminder cards, it's time to consider text messaging.

From my guide to appointment reminders, I show that 53% of people said they simply forget to attend or cancel many of their appointments. Another 28% said they missed their appointment simply because they wrote down the wrong date or time.

This is where a scheduled text reminder is the perfect way to reduce no-shows.

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7. Manage expectations with automatic out-of-office replies

Client communication is just as important when the office is closed or staff is away.

With texting, it’s easy to set up out-of-office replies and keyword-based text message campaigns. Both make it easy to send messages automatically and route messages into your inbox when an owner texts your practice.

An example of this in action would be if a client texted your number for a pet emergency beyond business hours. Your auto-response text could then provide additional emergency contact information.

Prompt replies aren’t only part of good texting etiquette. They’re also essential to setting and maintaining client engagement. And you get the added benefit of not having to listen to a bunch of voicemails.

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8. Promote new products or services

Selling a new, specialty brand of dog food? Offering a new vaccine? You can let pet owners know with a quick text message broadcast.

SMS marketing works great for engaging with pet owners at scale. Especially when sending picture messages and special offers to your client base.

Many of the top SMS marketing services and mass text apps make it easy for practice managers and staff to send text broadcasts.

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9. Texting gets you paid faster and works well for collecting more on-time payments

Getting paid isn’t easy. Reminding someone to pay you takes time and can be a hassle. This is especially true if you’re only making phone calls to remind pet owners of their late payments.

In a recent survey of 400 businesses, 27% noted that they have a hard time creating and sending invoices. Another 46% said they have difficulty getting paid on time. While 49% said they have a hard time following up on late payments.

These numbers probably don’t surprise you.

But what will surprise you is how text-to-pay can help you collect payments and send reminders.

Business text messaging providers like MessageDesk are starting to offer text-to-pay as a simple, streamlined, cashless payment method.

Some business text messaging apps even sync directly with small business accounting systems like QuickBooks Online and Xero.

Suggested Article: Small Business Invoicing Guide | How to Send an Invoice

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10. Get more reviews of your vet clinic from pet-owners

It’s always a best practice to listen to the people (and pets) you serve. One way to do this is by asking pet owners to leave you a Google review after their appointment.

With business texting services like MessageDesk, it’s easy to schedule post-appointment text messages. Simple automation like these can lead to dramatic increases in reviews.

We find those vet clinics that set up post-appointment messages get 5/10 patients to leave a review within a day of receiving the text message.

Good Google reviews are also vital to local businesses and getting referrals. They’re social proof that can improve your local search ranking, build credibility, and give you feedback regarding client experiences.

Hey {{ FirstName }}, Thanks for bringing {{ PetName }} into the office today for his annual check-up. Would you mind taking the time to leave us an honest review regarding your experience today? {{ GoogleReviewLink }}.

Get Your Link to Your Google Reviews Page

Try our free Google review link generator.

15 Veterinary Templates for Texting

The following text templates cover the most common use cases veterinary practices and animal hospitals encounter when texting. You’re also free to check out our entire list of free text message templates.

1. Introduction

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. Thanks for signing up for our text alerts. Text STOP at any time to opt out of messages.

2. Schedule appointment

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. {{ PetName }} is due for a wellness checkup. To schedule an appointment, please text or call us at this number with your preferred dates and times.

3. Confirm appointment

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. We’re confirming {{ PetName }}’s appointment on {{ Date }}. If you have any questions, please text or call us at this number.

4. Appointment reminder

Hello {{ FirstName }}, {{ PetName }}’s appointment is tomorrow at 8 a.m. Does that still work for you?

5. Confirm surgery

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. I’m confirming {{ PetName }}’s surgery that has been scheduled for [Date] at __ a.m./p.m. If you have any questions, please text or call us at this number.

6. Surgery instructions

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. Please make sure {{ PetName }} doesn’t eat after __ p.m. Surgery drop-off is between __ and __ a.m. tomorrow. Please call or text us with any questions.

7. Send a picture message after surgery

Hello {{ FirstName }}, {{ PetName }} is out of surgery and resting comfortably. We’ll update you in a few hours and provide a written plan for HER/HIS recovery at home. Text us or call if you have any questions.

8. Medication and diet refill reminders (before clients need emergency refills)

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }} with a reminder to refill {{ PetName }}’s prescription, so you have an adequate supply for the next 30 days.

9. Prescription refill ready alerts

Hello {{ FirstName }}, {{ PetName }}’s prescription refill is ready for pickup. If you have any questions, please call or text us at {{ PracticeNumber }}]. Thank you.

10. Billing reminder

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON from {{ Practice }}. Our records show that your bill for {{ PetName }} is due on {{ Date }}. Thank you for your prompt payment.

11. Callback and checkups

Hello {{ FirstName }}, I wanted to check in on {{ PetName }} to see how things are going. If you have any questions or concerns, you can text me back at {{ PracticeNumber }}.

12. Test results

Hello {{ FirstName }}, we wanted to inform you that {{ PetName }}’s fecal results came back negative. Please call or text {{ PracticeNumber }} with any questions. Thank you.

13. Let clients know you’re on the way (for mobile practices or farm calls)

Hello {{ FirstName }}, this is PERSON. I’m on my way and should arrive at your location soon. Reply to this text if you need to reach me.

14. Office closed due to severe weather or another event

Hello {{ FirstName }}, due to the severe winter storm blanketing the area, our office will be closed through {{ Date }}. If you have an emergency during this time, call {{ PracticeNumber }}.

15. Office closed auto-reply

Our office is currently closed. If this is an emergency, call {{ PracticeNumber }}. To schedule an appointment, reply with your preferred dates and times and we’ll get back to you. For all other inquiries, we’ll reply when we re-open. Hours: M-F
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Final thoughts and next steps

Ready to start texting? Interested in giving MessageDesk a try? Feel free to schedule a demo or start a free trial.

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