Eight Tips for Protecting Your Pet »
From household hazards to insurance, here is a roundup of our best tips for ensuring your pet's safety.
From household hazards to insurance, here is a roundup of our best tips for ensuring your pet's safety.
From vacation ideas to gardening preparation, check out our September checklist to enjoy the rest of summer and get ready for fall.
Just like the planning that went into your vacation, there is planning needed before boarding your pet. Here are some dos and don'ts to help make the process a little easier.
I have a lot of mixed feelings about this clinic.. I think the doctors are great and I have always had wonderful experiences with the kennel staff and the friendly receptionists, but this clinic definitely feels like sometimes all they care about is money. Not only did they just increase their prices again, but I have also had a few problems with their manager. There have been a couple times after visiting the clinic for boarding and for exams, I have had a couple questions about my bill that I wanted clarified, and after leaving a few voicemails for their office manager, Alicia, I never got a call back. I felt like I was just being ignored so I went in to the clinic, and after asking the receptionist if I could talk to her, she went through a doorway to talk to her, and I heard the women say that she was too busy. The poor receptionist came back to the front very apologetic and helped me figure out my bill and fixed the problem for me. I felt so bad for the receptionist that the manager would put her in that uncomfortable position, but she handled it very well. Also, I love that they have such long hours on the weekends, but there have been multiple times when I am there to pick up my dogs on the weekend that it is super busy and there are 5 or 6 people in line in front of me and only one receptionist trying to help everyone as fast as she can. I know she is doing her best, but I still have to end up waiting 10-15 mins to be helped. Overall, I love the doctors and my dogs love the daycare, so I will continue to come to the clinic but I only when it is absolutely necessary and I hope to never have to deal with the manager again.
I have had animals my entire life, and I have never met a Vet and vet office staff that are so caring, so dedicated and absolutely willing to help you with anything and everything. I can get appointments the day I call, I can talk to the vet on the phone, I can talk to office staff, get meds the same day I call the list goes on and on. I called for advice and to pick up medicine, and I arrive to a Doctor eager to help me, he had printed off a packet of information for me to read and and told me the cheapest place to get what my dog needed. If the people who work here ever have a bad day, it never shows. I have never once felt like they were in a hurry. The doctor has brought out books and illustrations to better explain things to me. He is amazing. My dog is not the best dog to be around at the vets office, he gets very nervous but the Dr's and staff are AMAZINGLY patient with him. On his first visit, we stayed 15 min later then our appointment because the vet was playing with him, and giving him treats to get him comfortable. What a great, great, fantastic place. Dr. Hank Cerny and staff go above and beyond in EVERY aspect of the practice. When my family moves out of state in the near future I will find a way to come back to this vets office. Every animal of mine will know this vet. I think they are very reasonable in price, and especially for the exceptional service with every visit.
I would highly recommend the Belmont Veterinary Center for the care of your beloved pet. We had a beautiful German Shepherd mix named Katie that loved going to the Center for boarding and exams. The staff was friendly and professional anytime we took her in for a visit. Katie developed a limp in her right, front leg and it was quickly diagnosed that she had bone cancer. Our veterinarian discussed our options for treating Katie; and because of the aggressive nature of her cancer, we decided to have her leg amputated. I was impressed with the care that Katie received before and during this major surgery. Everything was explained to us as owners and I believe Katie was given excellent medical care. There was a compassion shown to my husband and I that I consider exceptional. I believe the staff at Belmont went to great lengths to help us through the difficult months leading up to and after the loss of this wonderful animal and extended sympathy and comfort to us. We were very grateful for their services. We have adopted another German Shepherd mix named Maggie and she is greeted with the same warm, friendly manner as Katie was. The staff is wonderful and we appreciate the quick and professional way they answer any questions we may have. They have demonstrated on numerous occasions that this is not just a job to them - they actually care about the owners and pets that go there for medical care.
Choosing the right vet for your pet can be tough. After all, your furry friend can't tell you how he or she feels about the doctor. Even though you're not the one treated by the vet, whoever your animal sees is obviously your decision. Since many veterinary diseases and injuries can turn into emergencies very quickly, it's important to have a go-to vet. This way, you can ensure you'll know whom to see when your animal needs care.
Speak to your friends and family about vets who've treated their pets. You can even talk to your groomer or an animal shelter worker for referrals. When you visit the clinics you've been referred to, check that the facility is clean, animals are separated and the staff is calm and courteous. Not all clinics are American Animal Hospital Association accredited. This accreditation isn't a legal necessity, though a clinic that's AAHA-accredited is guaranteed to offer high-quality medical care. To receive accreditation, the clinic has to meet the AAHA's standards in the areas of facility, equipment and quality care.
If you're looking for a specialist, you want to make sure he or she is board-certified to practice in that specific area of animal medicine. You'll want to make sure your vet is also convenient to visit, so there are factors to take into account.
The type of animal you own should play a part in which vet you choose as well. While your options are vast if you have a dog or cat, you may have to visit an avian clinic for your bird or an exotics clinic for your snake.
Just as there are many types of doctors, there are many types of vets. Some focus on livestock or house pets, while others may specialize in dentistry or surgery. They may work in a veterinary clinic or zoo, working specifically with the animals housed there, or travel to farms to work with livestock. Since horse racing and other equestrian activities are so popular, some vets are trained to work just with horses.
Diseases, like malaria and yellow fever are also transmitted through animals. Some vets have insight to diseases that affect both humans and animals. Vets have contributed to the treatment and cure of many diseases that plagued both humans and their furry friends.
Government agencies employ veterinarians as well. When an animal comes from a foreign land, these vets quarantine them and check for any diseases that may be present in an effort to control new diseases that can be brought into the country. Other Specific types of vets include:
A vet assistant works alongside the veterinarian and helps out around the clinic. In some cases, they may assist vets in surgery or restrain struggling animals during tests or lab work. The everyday duties of a veterinary assistant include; monitoring and caring for animals after surgery, keeping medical records, cleaning animals' teeth, feeding and bathing them, cleaning cages, sterilizing surgical equipment, giving animals medication, collecting samples for testing and performing laboratory tests, and offering grief counseling to pet owners.
It's a good idea to bring your pet to the vet regularly. This way, he or she becomes familiar and comfortable with the care providers, and you can stay on top of your pet's preventative care. If the animal is small enough, bring it to the office in a carrier. Just as you visit the doctor for a yearly check up, you should bring in your pet for regular check ups as well. During a routine veterinary visit, the vet will probably begin by asking you if there have been any changes in your pet's behavior or habits.
The vet will then take your pet's vitals, like weight, temperature, pulse and respiration rate, and perform a physical examination of the pet. During a physical exam, the vet checks the abdomen for swollen organs, and the legs, feet and joints for any potential problems. Depending on the age, breed or condition of your pet, your veterinarian may also check the eyes, ears and mouth.
When your vet conducts a full body examination, he or she will check out your pet's coat and skin, noting any hair loss, itchy spots or lumps. Keep note of your animal's shedding habits so you can let the vet know if anything seems abnormal. The vet will check for parasites, fleas, ticks, mites and heartworms as well.
Vaccinations are also important to your pet, especially if you have a cat or a dog, and your vet will suggest that you make sure they're current. Keeping up to date with vaccinations can prevent your furry friend from getting distemper, rabies, hepatitis and lyme disease. Some vaccinations last longer than others, so speak to your doctor about staying caught up with your animal's shots.
Just like your own health insurance, you want to make sure your animal is covered before he or she needs veterinary services. Some common animal surgeries can cost thousands of dollars, and you don't want to end up having to foot a surprise bill that costs more than your paycheck.
There's no set price for pet health insurance. Costs can depend on factors such as where you live, the age and breed of your pet, and how much coverage you want. Before you take out a pet insurance policy, you'll want to meet with your vet to go over what he or she thinks your animal should be covered for. Many vets believe that you should make sure cancer, chronic disease, hereditary and congenital disease, and common breed-related medical conditions are all addressed in your policy.
Some pet owners can't afford insurance for their pet, so there are other options to make paying for surprise pet visits as easy as possible. Some pet stores have wellness plans - which tend to be much cheaper than an insurance policy - that offer shots, check ups, screenings and discounts on various procedures your pet may need. A lot of veterinary offices offer payment plans for pricey procedures as well, as long as you have decent credit history. For a last-ditch option, there are even privately funded organizations that offer pet owners financial aid for their pet's treatments.