Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, we require that all patients book appointments to be examined by a veterinarian. This ensures that we set aside enough time to fully address the problem and minimize wait times in our hospital.
If you are running late, please call the clinic as soon as possible to let us know. We will do our very best to fit you into a later appointment the same day. If that is not feasible, we will find another appointment time that works with your schedule.
The best answer to this question is always the same: Call your veterinarian and book an appointment. If you are concerned, that is a good reason to have your pet examined by a professional. Our doctors will ask you questions to try to pinpoint your pet’s problem, and may recommend some diagnostic testing.
You can absolutely choose to use the same doctor for each of your pet’s vists. Simply mention you would like to see Dr. X when you call to make the appointment. In emergency situations, we encourage you to take the earliest available appointment, regardless of which doctor you will see.
Not only is it unethical to prescribe for an animal that has not been physically examined by a vet, it is also impossible to come up with an accurate plan, they cannot make diagnoses based on symptoms only as observed by the owner; the outward signs may be an indicator of a number of internal causes, with a wide variety of clinical treatments.
A complete physical exam and other diagnostic tests may be required to determine the cause of the symptoms and the best course of treatment.
Our practice consists of mainly dogs and cats, we will see the occasional bird or small mammal however, we do not have the equipment for advanced medical or surgical procedures on these species.
We encourage owners to visit pets in the hospital! We feel that the visits are beneficial to the owners and pets alike, and help to speed recovery. In order to keep the clinic running in an organized fashion, we do need to book visitations with hospitalized patients in advance. This allows us to have your pet medicated on time (if needed) and ready for some quality time when you arrive. Visits should be limited to no more than 30 minutes.
Yes. All pets brought onto the property must be properly contained and controlled. This means that all dogs must be leashed before exiting your vehicle, and cats should be either leashed or placed in a secure cat-carrier of appropriate size. Even the nicest pet can panic when brought to the hospital, and we would hate to have any run-aways!
ROUTINE PREVENTATIVE HEALTH
When we first vaccinate puppies or kittens at approximately eight (8) weeks of age, they have antibodies inherited from their mothers circulating in their blood. This is referred to as “innate immunity”, and it can interfere with the animal’s own immune response to a vaccination.
We do a series of vaccinations on young animals to ensure that their own immune systems respond and provide them with protection against certain diseases.
It is also important to have young animals examined frequently in the first few months of life. The examinations allow us to check for congenital diseases and monitor growth and development. These are also great opportunities to ask questions regarding dental health, training, nutrition and anything else you feel you need to know!
We strongly feel that family pets should be spayed (if female) and neutered (if male). There is a terrible problem in our city with pet over-population, and many pets are euthanized each year because they cannot find a home. If you choose to spay or neuter your pet, our current recommendation is that it be done at approximately five and a half (5 ½) to six (6) months of age. At this age, the animal has not quite reached sexual maturity but at the same time has had time to grow and develop normally.
The short answer to this question is “that depends”. Our clinic uses a licensed three (3) year rabies vaccine and follows a reduced-vaccination protocol. This means that once an animal has been fully vaccinated (full vaccines two years in a row), we can begin to rotate the vaccines given on a three (3) year schedule. This does NOT mean that your animal should only visit the clinic once every three (3) years! As a minimum, we should examine your pet and get an idea of his or her current state of health at least once every year.
Regular examinations are like routine check-ups for you; problems that can be identified and treated early have a much better chance of resolution. In geriatric animals, more frequent physical examinations are encouraged. We recommend physicals on aging animals at least every six (6) months.
Yes, even indoor cats should be vaccinated! There is always a chance your precious kitty will make a break for it and run away. Even thirty (30) minutes outdoors is enough time to come in contact with another cat and potentially be exposed to infectious diseases. By law, all pets are required to be protected against the rabies virus. Our vaccine protocols include the use of a three (3) year rabies vaccine, and we highly recommend the other “core” vaccinations are kept up to date. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!
When a pet comes to the hospital for surgery, several things happen.
Each pet receives a physical examination before the surgery to check the cardiovascular and respiratory systems as well as the general health of the animal.
In some cases, blood is drawn and tested to look at internal organ function and determine if anesthesia is safe for the patient. Each animal has an IV catheter placed into a limb to deliver the anesthetic drugs as well as fluid support during the procedure.
There are licensed technicians assigned to surgical patients to monitor their vital parameters while under anesthesia and guide them through a safe and comfortable recovery. We take every precaution to make sure your pet is safe and carefully monitored at all times.
All of these extras add up to excellent care for your pet and, unfortunately, extra numbers on your invoice! We feel that the peace of mind is worth a little bit extra out of your wallet.