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What to Expect

What to Expect at Your First Visit with Critter Clinic!

At Critter Clinic, you can expect our full attention our full attention to your pet’s medical and wellness needs.

When you arrive for your appointment, you’ll be greeted warmly and offered complimentary coffee, water, or maybe even hot chocolate! We want humans to be comfortable too!

In your exam room, one of our veterinary technicians will ask about your pet’s medical history, current condition and the reason for your visit. We know this can seem redundant...at this point you’ve already provided this information. But we promise, it’s all part of the discovery process in helping your pet.

One of our veterinarians will examine your pet, ask further questions and recommend diagnostic tests if needed. Once the tests have been run (all blood work is performed in our in-house labs), your doctor will discuss a possible diagnosis and treatment plan.

This is a great time to ask questions. We’ll take all the time you need to adequately address your concerns; our goal is to be thorough and transparent. We want you to be completely comfortable with the information we provide.

After the doctor’s visit, one of our veterinary technicians will wrap things up and provide you with any aftercare instructions. Our front desk staff will check you out, process your payment and schedule follow-up appointments if necessary.

Please note: We work hard to be prompt and see our patients at their scheduled appointment time. Although we have contingencies for emergencies, there are times when the unexpected creates delays. We have processes to minimize delays as much as possible, and greatly appreciate your patience as we tend to these situations.

If you have an upcoming appointment with one of our hospitals, please remember to bring any paperwork, such as medical records from the breeder or rescue, so that we can include these in your pet’s file. To help expedite your check-in process, please complete the new patient form here.

Wellness Exam Checklist

Early detection is key! Pets age faster than we do, so major health changes can occur in a short amount of time. We recommend a pet wellness exam twice a year to reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, obesity, arthritis, heart disease, and other serious conditions that increase with age. Here’s a list of the most important health screenings for cats and dogs that we’ll discuss during your pet’s visit with us:

Dogs | Adults (1-6 years)

  • Immunizations
  • Parasite check
  • Heartworm check
  • Dental health
  • Blood panel
  • Chemistry panel
  • Urinalysis

Dogs | Seniors (7+ years)

  • Osteoarthritis check
  • Chest radiograph
  • Thyroid check

These are in addition to adult exams

Cats | Adults (1-6 years)

  • Immunizations
  • Parasite check
  • Heartworm check
  • Dental health
  • Blood panel
  • Chemistry panel
  • Urinalysis

Cats | Seniors (7+ years)

  • Osteoarthritis check
  • Renal disease screen
  • Heartworm check
  • Thyroid check
  • Blood pressure check

These are in addition to adult exams

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Blood Work

Blood tests are as important for pets as they are for humans. The American College of Veterinary Anesthesiology recommends that all animals have a pre-surgical blood test. By performing recommended blood work, we set a baseline for your pet’s health and may find a small anomaly that would otherwise catch you off-guard or change the course for an upcoming surgery. Our hospital is equipped with in-house diagnostic laboratories to quickly process bloodwork. This is particularly helpful in emergency situations, when time is of the essence!

At Critter Clinic, pre-anesthetic blood screening is required. The value you receive is unmatched, as many illnesses that we see on a daily basis can go from undetectable to potentially deadly (particularly when combined with surgery and/or anesthesia) over the course of just a few weeks.

Here’s what we’re testing for when we run your pet’s blood work:

  • RBC – Red Blood Cell Count
  • WBC – White Blood Cell Count
  • CBC – Complete Blood Cell Count
  • BUN – Blood Urea Nitrogen (Kidney)
    • ALT – Alanine Transaminase (Liver)
    • ALK P – Alkaline Phosphatase (Liver)
    • K+ – Potassium
    • GLU – Glucose
    • GLOB – Globulin (Liver)
    • CRE – Creatinine (Kidney)
    • NA+ – Sodium Levels
    • TP – Total Protein (Hydration)
    • ALB – Albumin (Liver Proteins)
    • AMY – Amylase (Digests Carbohydrates)
    • TBIL – Total Bilirubin
    • PCV – Hematocrit Levels
    • CA – Calcium

Post Surgery Recovery Tips for Your Pet

The surgery is over! As the anesthesia wears off, we will stay right by your pet’s side and comfort them as they wake up. They will be kept warm with blankets or on a heating pad and we will stay with them until they are fully awake, sitting up, and responsive. When both your veterinarian and technician are confident that your pet is doing well, we will allow them to rest for further monitoring.

When it’s time to go home, our team will thoroughly explain post-surgery instructions and answer all of your questions. As part of your pet’s recovery, it’s important to keep an eye out for possible complications. Aside from the typical “no licking the surgery area” and “no jumping on furniture,” here are a few additional post-surgery monitoring tips. If you notice any of these post-surgery complications, bring your pet back in to us immediately (or to the nearest emergency veterinary hospital if it is outside of our normal business hours):

Canine and Feline Spay:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Recurrent Heat
  • Urinary Incontinence
  • Weight Gain
  • Suture Reactions

Canine and Feline Neuter:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Testicular Swelling
  • Suture Reactions

Tumor or Growth Removal:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Swelling and Drainage
  • Suture Reactions
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