While every day at Exotic Vet Care is a new adventure, there are recurring questions we address regularly. Here are some of them; feel free to add your query in the comments section.
Q: Why should I get my new pet a checkup? I just spent a lot of money buying him and all of the supplies that they told me to get at the store.
A: Congratulations on your new family member! We recommend you schedule an appointment with us as soon as possible after bringing your new pet home so that we can perform a thorough physical examination and fecal analysis to make sure you have a healthy pet who is not harboring parasites or underlying illness. At this initial consultation, we will ensure you have purchased the right type of enclosure, bedding or litter, lighting, and food and give you a much deeper understanding on your pet’s needs and wants so that you can provide the best care possible from the outset. You would be amazed at the difference between what is best for the pet’s health and longevity and the products that are advertised for those pets. A huge percentage of health issues we see in our patients are directly related to improper and imbalanced diet and failing to provide the appropriate environmental factors (substrate, lighting, temperature and humidity) for the pet to thrive.
Q: How can my new pet be sick? I just got him!
A: Many pets are bred and housed in less-than-ideal conditions, and despite the best efforts of the breeder or seller, these pets often come to you with ailments invisible to the eye, such as internal parasites or bacteria, respiratory infections, and other underlying issues. Some pets are prone to specific ailments like ear infections, breed- or species-specific disease, dental issues, or other health concerns. Often, by the time your new pet looks ill or shows symptoms like lethargy, not eating well, sneezing or coughing, or other clear signs, the illness has been developing for weeks or months, and that makes it all the more difficult for the compromised pet to recover.
Q: Why is it so expensive to treat my pet?
A: With birds and exotic pets, prevention is crucial, and a wellness exam for these pets is no more expensive than a wellness exam for any type of pet anywhere. When illness has been developing over the course of days, weeks, or months, the pet is highly compromised by the time symptoms are noticeable, and more intense treatment and supportive care are often necessary. We do our best to work within the client’s financial abilities and adjust our approach accordingly, but often the only way to save the pet is to invest in diagnostics like radiographs, bloodwork, heavy metal testing, or disease testing in order to get a quick and correct diagnosis, identify the cause of illness, and provide the medications and treatments to work to heal the pet. Unfortunately there is no one-size-fits-all medical plan for these pets, and every case has its own nuances. Pets who come to us with one specific symptom often have other underlying ailments: a rabbit with a respiratory illness may also have an ear infection, or a bird with loose stool may also have metabolic deficiencies like malnutrition and obesity. Treating the symptom does not resolve the issue because the cause must be identified and addressed directly. When an illness has been developing over such a long time, recovery can also take a long time, and medical rechecks are necessary to assess the pet’s progress through the course of treatment. We feel that every life is precious, and we want to help our clients provide the best care for their special family members, and at the very least to not let them suffer needlessly. These pets, as prey animals, innately hide signs of illness and weakness, so by the time you feel they may be sick they have likely been hiding their illness for quite some time, suffering in silence. We know how to recognize the subtle signs and will always guide you in the best interests of your pet, and strive to work within your means. We accept CareCredit, a payment plan that offers 6 months interest-free terms and is invaluable to many of our clients. Please visit www.carecredit.com for more information or to apply. We accept ScratchPay, which offers 30 days interest-free terms with no credit check or 12- and 24-month plans with interest. Please visit www.scratchpay.com for more information or to apply. There is no fee to apply or participate in either of these plans, and it is a relief to know you have the ability to finance your pet’s care and can move forward with treatment immediately.