Zoo Babies: Winter 2018 »
Check out the cutest newborns from zoos around the country and learn where you can see them.
Check out the cutest newborns from zoos around the country and learn where you can see them.
From vacation ideas to gardening preparation, check out our September checklist to enjoy the rest of summer and get ready for fall.
From household hazards to insurance, here is a roundup of our best tips for ensuring your pet's safety.
I have been taking my 3 cats to Queen Anne Animal Clinic since I moved to Seattle. One has asthma and goes monthly for an injection. These are the nicest, most accommodating, competent, efficient and compassionate vets and staff I have ever known. I wholeheartedly recommend them.
They saved a very much loved pet chicken and were really good to her. I know a lot of people would think it insane to be so attached to what is considered a food or farm animal but everyone who knew her loved her.
What a great place for pets, we love it. We called them up when our 12 year old cat Charlotte was feeling sick. We were very nervous but felt at ease as soon as we entered and were greeted by the front desk. They knew we were stressed so we were seen fairly quickly.The doctor explained each diagnostic step in details. Charlotte is now on thyroid meds and doing much better. My husband has memory issues but the staff answered his questions over and over again with smiles. We can't thank them enough for taking care of our special needs and that too very professionally.
Dr. Spencer, the new owner, refused to see my dying cat because I saw another vet. I consider this professional misconduct.After the first office visit, I repeatedly and diplomatically asked to see another, ANY other veterinarian there. It was the previous vet-owner, Dr. Stephen Jones, who built up the reputation of this clinic. Spencer misdiagnosed speckling on my cat's nose as precancerous lesions based on a nonchalant two-second examination, handed us the estimate, and let us know he was ready to do surgery. I had the distinct impression that he pretends to know things he does not.He generously told me that he could clean my cat's teeth and remove the lesion at the same time, provided that I submit the cat to an ultrasound cardiac screening ($500). He did not explain the risks involved in such surgery on a geriatric cat.This initial office visit was, to put it mildly, inadequate. Even the generally noncommittal cat's co-owner--on the faculty of the University of Washington--, turned to me and said, "He's [really] not very good, is he?"He examined my for a total of two minutes and showed no genuine interest in my cat. His approach can be described as "shooting-from-the-hip."He summarized the first office visit by saying that my cat was in terrible shape. The next day, however, after he actually looked at the lab results, he reversed himself. Then he stated that I could stop--cold-turkey-- the sub-cutaneous injections. This is advice that I strongly believe, in retrospect, harmed my cat and led to his premature death.His expertise on felines is frankly nil. Claiming that a cat with chronic renal failure, just based on numbers, is back in a "pre-crash" phase flew in the face of common sense--kidney function does not regenerate--and was misleading. And plain WRONG.Later on he refused to write a refill--a common refrain heard at this clinic. He also stingily prescribed only three tablets of a safe appetite stimulant widely used for felines with kidney disease.An illustration of his churlish telephone manners would one he left on my answering machine: "...and I'M TELLING YOU..."He also demanded--and later revealed, without my permission--sensitive personal information, which later he admitted, had not been actually necessary to have at all. To that say the other vet, Dr. Westerdahl, is mediocre would be to give her undue praise, notwithstanding her credentials, which look good, unfortunately, only on paper. Her guarded demeanor--piscine stare-- did not make communication exactly easy.She did the bare-bones minimum, evincing a grammatical infelicity but little interest, and then exited without even informing me that the office exam (all of 10 minutes) was over. When I informed an assistant that I had an unanswered question, Westerdahl returned, after having done the urinalysis, and spent another five minutes.I should have known better when, before deciding whether to go here or not, I interviewed the vet tech. We were suddenly pulled out of the room by a staff person who gave me a dirty look and had me presented with a bill for $40 (no one had even seen my cat!).They did not allow us to see our cat's blood being drawn, inventing a bit of nonsense for not doing so. (Who exactly is paying for this, by the way?).The vet tech Kay was of unfailing good cheer and decency. I am grateful to this sterling individual. The other staff--several with their best cosmetic smiles intact 9-to-6 and occasional insolence--do their jobs. One other positive note: they do write prescriptions so you don't have to feel ripped off buying medications from their limited dispensary (cf, Cat Clinic of Seattle).Not a good place to bring a cat, in any case. Note: Neither vet is a cat-owner, though the staff insists, a bit too strenuously, that they both "really like" cats.
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.