It’s very difficult these days to find a doctor that does house calls. But, if you’re a pet parent, you’re in luck – one new business trend in the industry is home veterinary care. For many pet families, that annual trip to the vet has become more difficult because many pets just freak out when the time comes. A new business, Veterinary Housecall Care, comes to your home for your pet's examination.
“I’m trained in emergency veterinary medicine,” says Dr. Jami-Lyn Derse, founder of Veterinary Housecall Care. “On a weekly basis, I was hearing that people wanted me to do their recheck or they would skip them all-together because a trip to the vet had become such an ordeal. I finally decided that now was the time to start an at home veterinary business.”
Based in Libertyville, Veterinary Housecall Care works throughout the Northshore and Northern suburs. Dr. Derse recently had a baby and was looking for more flexible options for a better work-life balance. She found out quickly there was a big need for this type of service in her community.
“When I go into people’s homes, I am meeting a more relaxed and friendly pet because we are on their turf,” says Dr. Derse. “I often sit on the floor and do the exam and the pet doesn’t even realize that they are getting a check up. It’s much less stressful than what most of the pets are used to. People with cats especially skip their annual wellness checks because cat trips to the vets are so stressful.”
At annual wellness checks, veterinarians are able to spot fluctuations in weight and other changes in your cat or dog. Blood work and urine checks also help spot an illness earlier when it’s easy to treat. Cats are experts at masking pain. So, too often, when your cat appears ill, he or she may be profoundly ill and need additional tests and long term treatment, which costs much more in the long run.
“Veterinary Housecall Care is getting a great response so far because there are few veterinarians offering this type of service,” adds Dr. Derse. “It’s not just that the pets are more relaxed, it’s about scheduling. Often people can’t make it to their veterinarian during office hours and they don’t have the flexibility because of work and family to get in during that window of opportunity.”
Veterinary Housecall Care offers wellness exams, vaccinations, heartworm checks, urine checks and also is able to handle minor emergencies. She does have limitations when it comes to x-rays, ultrasounds and other diagnostics. While she can handle minor emergencies like lacerations, Dr. Derse says its best to call the vet and talk through emergencies when they happen.
“If you call your vet or the emergency vet, they are trained to walk you through a situation and will be able to tell you if you should be coming in now or wait until morning,” she adds. “I can’t stress how important it is to call. If your male cat is straining going to the bathroom, there could be an obstruction and that is life threatening. Time is of the essence. It is always best to err on the side of caution and call.”
Spring may be just around the corner but she cautions that you still need to be careful when walking your dog. Walking slowly on ice can help prevent your dog from slipping. You also should beware of any anti-freeze. It’s deadly for all pets in small amounts.
“Once spring hits, it’s important to make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations,” says Dr. Derse. “People hit the dog parks and dog-friendly areas and parvo spreads very easily if your pet isn’t vaccinated. Also, prevent injuries to your pet and other pets at dog parks by being a good dog owner. Fearful and aggressive dogs don’t do well at dog parks.”
You can find out more about Veterinary Housecall Care online, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 847-672-7737.
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