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  #1  
Old 11-21-2012, 01:06 PM
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Unhappy Vet shopping sucks :(

I moved recently to a new part of town. My dogs' vet, who I love, is now almost an hour away, so I've been looking for a Vet in this new part of town where I now reside. And I've learned how much it sucks to Vet shop. My old Vet was one my daughter found, and as she used to be a Vet Tech she knew what to look for, plus the tech gossip grapevine was alive and strong apparently, so she was able to eliminate some choices just because of what she knew about the clinics or the folks who worked there or ran them. None of her gossip is current now though, so I'm on my own.

First thing I did was call around, talked to the receptionists, get prices just for comparison to my old clinic. I don't mind paying more, but I also won't pay ridiculous prices, especially for things like dentals and such which both mine need on a yearly basis. And some of the prices HAVE been ridiculous! I was floored! 2 to three times as much as my old vet for a dental! Yearly well-dog visits including shots also double or more! How can there be such a fluctuation? It's the same service, the same vaccines, the same procedures and presumably similar overhead.

I'm getting pretty discouraged. I finally took Tango to a vet on the weekend because he's overdue for his shots and exam. I drove to the office last week and stopped in to take a look and talk to the people there, before I actually committed to a visit. The front desk folks were really nice, place was clean, no smell, costs were certainly comparable to my old vet. I decided to give it a shot, so made the appointment for yesterday morning.

I had to wait a while, before I was put into an exam room, and then I waited a bunch more in there, but whatever, if they're good who cares, right?

Strike one - They don't weigh or take temps in the exam room. They took Tango away to do that, and I was summarily stopped when I tried to follow, because it was "staff only." I don't appreciate not being able to see the way my animal is being handled, and what, precisely, they're doing.

Strike two - I brought in a fecal sample which they kept forgetting to either run, or tell me the results of, I'm not sure which. I had to ask three separate times what the result was, and each time got a kind of clueless look, or an "oh, yes, let me check on that" or whatever.

The vet was fabulous! I'd go to her again in a heartbeat. Unfortunately she was the relief vet and only came in 2X a month. She doesn't have a practice anywhere else either, I asked her. As long as my dogs don't get sick, I can schedule their visits when she's on. But as far as their dentals go (they need them yearly) she won't be the one to do them because she's only in on the weekends and they don't do surgeries then.

What do I do? How do I choose wisely? Am I just being too picky in wanting to eliminate this Vet because of what annoyed me?
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:13 PM
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I don't think you're being unreasonable, and the truth is, no matter how good the vet is, when your dog stays for a procedure, it's the staff that's caring for him. So, if you feel like that staff doesn't have their act together, or you aren't comfortable with the way they handle your pet, you probably shouldn't make this place your place. Finding a vet in a new town is a total pain in the bum.
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:52 PM
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I know what you are going through, we moved from NJ to Florida 4 years ago and I had 2 dogs then , now 3 with Ike, I have been to 4 different Vets so far. I miss our Vet in Jersey.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:01 PM
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I think we not only base our feelings about the way we're treated but also a gut feeling. We care about our babies so our gut feeling is usually right. If you weren't happy it might have been other warning signs trying to get through to you.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:17 PM
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I agree, I don't think you are being unreasonable. I want to feel comfortable when I leave my dogs there. And if I see things like that, I wouldn't stick around.... I would pay more to feel comfortable. hope you find a place you are comfortable with!
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:17 PM
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We went though the same when trying to find a vet when we got Max. I rang round a few different ones asking some questions and the one I originally thought we would use ended up being ruled out as they promised to get someone to call me back on 2 occassions but they never did! If you're not completely happy I would carry on looking to see if you can find somewhere better.
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Old 11-21-2012, 03:29 PM
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Haha!! This is the exact problem I'm having Ronni!! I guess TN doesn't have any good vets. I started going to a holistic vet close to Nashville, but thats over an hour away. Last week I had to revert to a long-time old vet for my chi stomach troubles as I need to keep good ties with my vets close by for emergency reason. I've come to the conclusion that I will pull all my resources (chi forum, over-the-phone calls to holistic vet, regular vet, etc) for what ever I need. The internet & CP has been an invaluable resource for me, moreso than any vet.
BTW--Aren't you concerned about putting your dogs under yearly for a dental? It's just such a risky procedure when there are alternatives.
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