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What to look for in your family vet

Bekki

Savannah Super Cat
#1
What are different things to look for in a primary vet? I hear you do not need an exotic pet vet for a savannah. But I am being careful because I had gone through quite a nightmare with a prior vet for my rabbits. Have since changed and then realized how poor my treatment was there. I want to make a smart choice as to vet for future savannah money isn't always the indicator of great service I have discovered. I don't want to put my pets health on the line especially if there ever were an emergency I want to know I've made a smart decision on the care of my extended family, and that they will be in good hands


"Those who wander aren't always lost"
 

Kristin

Animal Communicator
#2
Omg!! I hear ya! I had a nightmare experience with my rabbit, and my macaw. My rabbit ended up dying right after her vet visit, and I wasted a few hundred bucks on my macaw's vet visit as they said "oh it could be anything" and really didn't bother finding out WHAT it was...

I found the PERFECT vet for my exotics. For me, knowledge is #1. If they can tell me exactly what is happening, and know about the animal, I feel comfortable with them working on my animal. That is more for my parrots though, as they are such a difficult animal to treat.

I will go back if the vet talks TO me not AT me. I HATE it when vets prattle on and know you don't understand a word of what they are saying and don't bother clarifying. I like it when they make sure I understand, and give me a chance to ask questions if I am unclear about anything.

The way my animal reacts to the vet is big for me too. Animals obviously are more sensitive to energy than humans, so if my fur/featherbies have no problem going to the vet, I feel more comfortable with them being there. I am a bit more sensitive to energy now, so I go on vibes as well.

I find it important when the vet listens as well. I hate it when you have a concern and they just brush you off as a worried mum...unless they can prove why I am just being a worried mum. But then they are still listening to me.

The one vet I won't let work on Zeddie anymore was condescending when I purchased her, and every time
Zeddie comes in she makes snide remarks on how much I spent on her, and her size. I know this vet because I work there, but be aware of how the vet treats your pet. They change as soon as you are out of the room often, which is why you need to pay attention to how your pet reacts to the vet.

Some vets just clock in, take care of the animals, and leave. Other vets come in on their days off to make sure their patient is okay, and will give you their home number if there is an emergency. With Oliver, they have one vet who is an expert on exotics. She wasn't working when we brought him in, but came in as soon as we left, as the other vet called her and asked for help. Oliver wasn't her patient, but he is a parrot so she came in at 8:30 on Sunday night to make sure he survived the night.

You will have an opportunity to find a good vet through check ups. Ask friends and family where they go for their vet, and how they are treated. There is also a listing of vets on the forum you can check out.
 

Bekki

Savannah Super Cat
#3
Is cat only, a better option? and I think I would take to the vet I had been to for my females spay. And for the tests to make sure they were clear. They one was treated for snuffles other wasn't but didn't show signs. Wanted to make sure she didn't have it or have a chance of catching it. the vet that originally went to was condescending he looked at him and said he seems to have snuffles (which. Already knew, and then rambled on about pasturella , I had a feeling it was bordetella which when testing was done turns out it was.... But when I told him I understood what he was saying and i felt it was bordetella he looked at me like I was dumb. if my animal isn't acting normal I will dam well look it up and see what the problem is and probably obsess about information until I make it to the vet. I even knew what he was going to prescribe. silus would have a panic attack in the car ride there he seems to be out of breath when. Go. But seemed more calm about the car ride to the other vet. I should have known. Vets could very easily hate me lol. Just like the people who web md themselves, I get territorial over my babies


"Those who wander aren't always lost"
 

Kristin

Animal Communicator
#4
A cat only vet could be good. We have one in my area, but she is pretty expensive.

It is hard to find buns a good vet. Charmyn never actually had a vet I was 100% comfortable with :(

Being territorial over your animals is good, it means you care :p Some vets don't understand why you care so much about a pocket pet. When I took Charmyn to the vet I thought she had a blockage in her stomach (she had had it before, and it was usually because she didn't eat her hay enough) so I told the vet that she had a history with that problem. He listened to her stomach and heard gurgling, which he said was good as things were passing, and prescribed Critical Care and blockage medicine. She died 2 days later when she was paralyzed (probably from a stroke). I was disappointed that because I said she had a history of blockage that he didn't do a proper exam, and only looked for the thing I mentioned. There was no way he could have saved her, but it still rubbed me the wrong way. Most vets get their backs up if you mention anything holistic in any ways as well, which doesn't help.
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
#5
A good vet is worth searching for. I don't think Savannahs need an exotic vet nor any special knowledge about the breed, more important imho is that they don't treat them any differently for being a Savannah.

I lucked out with the first vet we took our puppy to way back when we first moved to where we now live. I had intentions of trying vets out to see what was a good fit but I was so impressed with the first vet that I didn't. He was down to earth and friendly, communicative and did not have that condescension Bekki mentions that some vets do have. They seem to think they are gods for having an advanced degree (having a doctorate myself may mean I am less intimidated by such things I guess).

I like my vet and the rest of the vets at this vet hospital mainly because they do a lot of continuing education, but also have the ability to admit if they aren't sure about something...go away and make some calls, do some research...and come back to me with what they have learned. They don't mind that I do my own research and ask a lot of questions. My vet says that my cats are like a continuing education course, weird things seem to happen to mine or else I am more willing to spend the money on testing to really find out what is going on rather than accept the most likely explanation. Either way, I am a major contributor to their business ;-)

It's important to find a vet you have a good rapport with. You need to feel that they listen to you, and trust your instincts when you say something is wrong.

it's also good to check out your emergency vet options before you need them... as pets are terrible for falling sick on Christmas Eve etc when your regular vet is closed. I'm so fortunate to like the vets at the emergency vet hospital too (it's a specialist hospital so I've used them more for that than the emergency arm).
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
#6
It is true that Savannahs do not need an exotic vet, however some vets do not understand this. So the first thing I would recommend you do is call around to the different vet offices and ask them if they have ever treated Savannahs before, and if so which vet in the practice has worked with them. Ask them if they provide any special care for Savannahs - they may take this to mean you are asking about anesthesia or vaccines but in reality you want to find out if the vets feel it necessary to treat Savannahs in any special way, e.g., gas them down to examine them or draw blood samples, or treat them differently from other animals in any way.

Having said that, just because a vet has no experience with Savannahs doesn't mean he/she wouldn't be a good vet, so if they haven't had experience judge them by how they respond - do they seem interested or excited about meeting a Savannah? Do they express any reservations (either in their words or their tone of voice) about treating them? Do they seem willing to learn more about the breed?

Finally, meeting the vet in person is the best way to judge them. See how they and the staff handle your Savannah, and pay attention to the comments they make. If you find you aren't comfortable with a vet simply plan on seeing a different vet the next time one is needed. It sometimes takes some shopping around but hopefully you will find the perfect vet without too much trouble.
 

Bekki

Savannah Super Cat
#7
My vet tried prescribing something because my females poop became suddenly small. I knew she had been shedding and gave papaya enzyme to her double dose (it's bunny crack she loves them) and within 3 hours she was completely back to normal I did search the name of the stuff he wanted to give me and saw a lot of adverse reactions. I figure if the problem didn't get better in a day or two then I would take the medicine but since not completely blocked and still regular I felt it was safe. I don't trust modern medicine as much as others. I trust my intuition if I need the medicine or not. If its serious ill do what it takes to save my baby


"Those who wander aren't always lost"
 

Bekki

Savannah Super Cat
#9
All creatures is a good vet/hospital to go to they specialize in exotics so rabbits and hedgehogs are their forte, thing is they are soooo expensive. For emergencies I don't mind taking them and they also see cats and dogs as well and offer care packages for kittens with immunizations, claw trim, different screening, fecal test, blood work the whole 9 yards twice in a year and offer discounts on medications for members and so on. But with their markup not sure if it is worth it. but for an emergency I would trust them.


"Those who wander aren't always lost"
 

Bekki

Savannah Super Cat
#10
There is another vet which handles a lot of farm animals it's right by my work but closer to the farmers so that is where I started going for my buns. I think I will take my cat there because they are reasonably priced accept care credit but also do payment plans. And the vet was very informative and caring. with the dogs at my parents house we've tried. A few vets so I also know about those local ones and which ones were decent. I want to have all my ducks in a row for when I make my decision. It's looking like either sv I choose. Will have them within the next 2 weeks


"Those who wander aren't always lost"