User Permissions

Permissions are assigned to user through roles. Each role is made up of permissions, allowing you to easily ensure consistency in your team's work.

If you want more info on creating a role (or a few!) check out our guide.

There are four categories of permissions:

  • Admin: allow users to add/update/edit different things in admin

  • Invoices: give users the ability to take payments, returns, and more

  • Records: impact a user's ability to add to/edit a patient's SOAP

  • Reports: let the user see/view/run specific reports

Tip: On the whole, we recommend a conservative approach to attaching specific permissions to roles.

Admin Permissions

Bulk Edit

This permission allows users to access Shepherd's bulk edit feature. Since this allows anyone with the permission to update single or multiple

Clinic Settings: Update

This is where your practice contact information, logo, communication preferences, etc. all live. This permission allows a user to update all of that information, as well as:

  • Locations within your practice

  • Referral sources

  • Client discounts

  • Banquest info

Diagnoses: Update

To maintain a consistent diagnosis database, Shepherd doesn't allow users to delete or add diagnoses (we differ to the authorities of AAHA, AAEP, and SAS). However, this permission allows you to update a diagnosis in a few ways:

  • (de)activate

  • attach discharge instructions/files


This permission allows a user to set up an integration with services like IDEXX and Banquest. While we’ve worked hard to make setting up integrations as easy as possible, it's a more technical part of setting up Shepherd.

We’d recommend you'd only give a few people on your staff this permission. That way, if there’s an error that can be fixed by reconnecting/reestablishing the integration, you won't be dependent on only one person.

Inventory Management

Users with this permission are able to manage inventory including setting up new items, creating purchase orders, and receiving items.

Manage Announcements

Users with this permission are able to create announcements that are published within the pet portal.

Manage Forms

Users with the forms permission are able to create, edit, and send out forms to clients. These forms can be anything from new patient forms to consent for euthanasia.


If a user could benefit from using Shepherd's two-way texting functionality, we'd recommend adding this permission to their role.

This allows a user to access the messaging portal, where a user can communicate to clients through text. This is particularly useful for confirming/updating appointments. Users with this permission can also access all closed conversations.

Physical Exam Templates

Creating, updating, and deleting physical exam templates should be left to a more senior member of staff—and that's exactly what this permission allows users to do. That said, Shepherd allows exams to be performed by most employees at a practice—but that takes place in a SOAP.

First, creating too many templates could result in duplicate or redundant templates, and second, you increase the risk of providing less consistent care through minor changes in similar exam templates.

We have a few more guides that can help you out with physical exams:


With this permission, you're able to create/update products, product categories, bundles, and dispensing fees.

Since most of your practice’s products will be uploaded via, .csv, this is a task that’s usually not a common occurrence. Therefore, it’s best left up to a practice and/or inventory manager.

See our guide to the products and services section of admin


Reminders function as a set-it-and-forget-it solution to remind clients to bring their pets in for recurring appointments or appointments that require a follow-up. This permission allows a user to create a reminder that's triggered when a specific product is administered in a patient's record.

We’re all for automating your practice’s communication, however, we recommend giving the responsibility of making and updating reminders to a few people in your practice. This ensures consistency in communication and lessens the risk of duplicate notifications being sent out.


Creating/assigning Roles means you're able to create/update different roles—and, by extension, what permissions users with those roles have. Meta, right?

This is a task best left to practice managers and doctors.

For more info, see our guide to roles.


The ‘Scheduling’ section of Admin is the back end of the practice’s schedule. It’s where you can create/edit different appointment types, as well as provide practice and provider hours. This is something best left to a practice manager, or perhaps an office/practice administrator.

Need more details? Here's our scheduling guide.


With this permission, you’re also able to update and add new users to Shepherd, as well as assign user roles to those users.

See our guide to creating users.

Invoicing Permissions

Discounts: Apply

Because Shepherd allows you to give a discount to any line item in any invoice, this permission is off by default.

Note: any product/service with an automatic discount will have that discount applied, no matter what.

Invoices: Unlock

Unlocking an invoice allows a user to make changes, even after it's been closed out. This is a useful permission for team members who see a lot of product returns and process a lot of refunds.

Payments: Edit/Void

This permission allows users to edit an already-made payment's date, as well as void a payment or a refund.

This doesn't give the user access to a practice's payment processor.

Note: this does not allow a user to actually refund a returned item. That permission is called "Process Refunds."

Refunds: Process

Processing refunds allows a user to refund a purchase. This is separate from the "Product Returns" permission.


The "Product Returns" permission allows a user to take back a product from a client. This will be tracked in inventory management, assuming that the product is set up with the system.

Note: this is a separate permission from "Process Refunds," which allows a user to issue the monetary refund after a return has been made.

Records Permissions

Note: Delete

Every user in Shepherd can add notes and edit notes they’ve written, but this permission allows users to delete notes.

Deleting notes comes in handy if a time-stamped note was recorded incorrectly (or has misspelled words). If that’s the case, a user with this permission would delete the original note (with its errors) and replace it with a new one.

Note: Notes can’t be edited if the SOAP is locked

Patient: Transfer

This permission allows you to transfer a patient to another owner within Shepherd—not update the patient’s physical location (done in the SOAP Summary section).

In case you're keen to know how, we have a guide on how to do that.

Patient Weight Entry: Update/Delete

If you didn't get an accurate weight, this allows you to delete the original entry and re-add another.

Prescription and Refills: Cancel/Delete

This allows a user to cancel and delete a Rx from a record, as well as from the patient profile. It does not allow a user to change specific fields within the Rx, though; that permission is "Prescription and Refills: Update."

Prescription and Refills: Update

If you want someone to change specific fields for a Rx (the dose, amount, exp. date, and instructions), you'll want to enable this permission. Note that this does not allow a user to cancel or delete a prescription or refill; that permission is "Prescription and Refills: Cancel/Delete."

Prescriptions: Create

This allows a user to create an Rx from a record, as well as from the patient profile.

Prescription Refills: Approve/Deny

This allows a user to approve or deny an Rx refill request.

Production User: Change

Changing a production user is performed in an invoice. This allows the sale/discount of certain items to be added to another users production count/commission.

SOAP: Delete

If there's a duplicate SOAP in a patient's record, this allows a user to remove an entire SOAP from the patient's profile.

This action will be tracked in the patient's activity log.

SOAP: Unlock

Sometimes, closed SOAPs need to be revisited—whether it's adding addendum information, new lab results, etc. This permission allows a user to unlock a locked SOAP.

Reporting Permissions

Permissions associated with reports allow a user to see, run, and download individual reports. For more information on what each report contains, check out our guide.

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