Introducing a New Twist on Veterinary House Calls
By Lee Marie
Do you ever dread taking your pet to the vet? The car-ride, the carrier, the parking, the barking, the lobby full of other pets and people, strange noises and odors, etc. It can be overwhelming for many of us, and especially stressful for our pets.
Well, there is a positive change happening in the veterinary industry, and in one particular vet clinic right here in our neighborhood.
This positive new approach is called The Fear-Free™ Initiative, and CoastView Veterinary Hospital was the first, here in Clairemont, to have a Fear-Free Certified staff.
Developed by Dr. Marty Becker, “America’s Veterinarian” as dubbed by Dr. Oz, and who was the resident veterinary contributor on Good Morning America for 17 years, The Fear-Free Initiative aims to, “take the ‘pet’ out of petrified.” By using the Fear-Free protocols, coupled with reducing or removing the known anxiety triggers, pets have a far more rewarding experience which, in turn, makes for a more rewarding experience for the pet owner, and the veterinary staff.
Dr. Laura Schultz, CoastView Vet Hospital owner and medical director, is now taking the Fear-Free Initiative to an entirely new level by bringing it home; literally, into our homes, with Fear-Free house call services.
“House call services are an integral part of the Fear-Free scope of practice,” said Dr. Schultz. “The benefits of the Fear-Free methods are only enhanced when we are given the opportunity to evaluate pets in their usual environment.”
CoastView does not use a bus or a van in which to treat your pets. Their skilled staff arrives equipped to evaluate your pet in your pet’s favorite chair in the living room, or a sunny spot in your backyard, or in the middle of your kitchen floor. When possible and appropriate, they give the pet some time and space to choose their own place for the evaluation.
There are certain procedures, such as x-rays and surgery, which must be provided within their brick-and-mortar hospital on Clairemont Drive. However, they can take care of an impressive array of services during house calls; exams, vaccinations, blood draws for lab tests, treat ear problems, provide humane euthanasia, and more. “Many of our clients are pleasantly surprised at the level of care and treatment options we can provide during a house call visit,” said Schultz.
Should your pet need medication, CoastView’s veterinarians are happy to provide you with a written prescription you can take to your own regular pharmacy such as CVS, Walgreens, etc. In addition, they have partnered with a reputable online veterinary pharmacy which will ship prescription medications and pet food right to your doorstep. For special needs, they work with a veterinary specific compounding pharmacy which can customize dosages and provide many medications in flavored chewable tablets, tiny tablets, or even an oral gel which comes in over twenty flavors such as anchovy, peanut butter, and marshmallow.
Your pet is an important member of your family. Those of us who embrace and celebrate the human-animal bond are well-aware of the fact our pets can, and do, experience stress, pain, and fear. The Fear-Free Initiative is one of the most kindhearted methodologies to enter the field of veterinary medicine in a long time. Perhaps one day, The Fear-Free Way will be the only way in all veterinary hospitals.
Lee Marie is a San Diego based freelance writer with a passion for promoting the Fear-Free™ Initiative.