Has anyone ever noticed that pet ailments don’t always occur between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday?
What about those times when your Cocker Spaniel cannot stop throwing up and cannot control his severe diahrreah? And all these horrible things are happing at midnight on Saturday.
Usually, the only alternative is a hurried trip to the nearest animal emergency room. In most critical situations, time is of the essence.
There are certain factors you should be aware of before making the final decision to jump in the car and speed away.
First, an ER such as the Denton County Animal ER in Denton, Texas, have some fairly demanding policies. To begin with, be prepared to pull out your checkbook or a credit card. Animal emergency care, just like human emergency care, is expensive; much more expensive than visiting your regular vet.
Second, most emergency facilities, including Denton County, triage their patients. That means the most critical care individuals are moved to the front of the line. This, in turn, means the lump, bump, abrasion on your furkid may require a lengthy wait that can easily stretch into hours.
Third, the attending veterinarian will usually assess your pet’s condition and then provide you with financial information that ranges from a low to a high estimate.
Fourth, if the pet must remain at the ER, you’ll be required to leave a full deposit.
Fifth, payment is due upon completion of the services.
You must be fully aware of those factors before walking through the doors. Should you decide to not pursue treatment, the ER will provide euthanasia, if you wish.
The black Cocker in the photo is Zechariah, who became critically ill only 36-hours after he arrived at my home. My experience with animals is extensive but it was apparent very quickly that the only option (if I wanted him to live) was to bundle the nine-week-old puppy into a blanket and head for the ER, which, fortunately, is only 15-minutes away.
Zech was moved to the front of the line, where he was diagnosed with Parvo. The estimated cost of treatment was steep (as in very steep) but I gave permission to procede.
Dr. Hightower, Dr. Polly and Zech’s various attendants worked tirelessly on the tiny puppy, as did my husband and I. This, after all, is an emergency facility. That means operating hours are 24/7 on weekends and holidays, and from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. during the week.
Zechariah was picked up every morning at eight, dangling his numerous tubes, and moved to his regular vet. He would then be retrieved from his regular vet and returned to the ER. He received transfusions of plasma. He was “fed” intravenously. He was also administered effective, but simultaneously experimental, medicines. We went through more than two weeks before he was pronounced healthy; his body weight at the time of his release was a fragile 3 1/2-pounds.
I was encouraged to call at any time to check his condition. I was also encouraged to visit, since my presence lifted his tiny spirits.
Was it expensive? Yes, it was very expensive but I was prepared. Dr. Hightower, especially, made every effort to provide effective treatment while also safely cutting costs whenever and wherever possible. He even okayed a special rate for certain parts of the treatment after it became obvious that we were in for a long haul.
The end result is the beautiful Cocker in the photo.
Denton County ER utilizes state-of-the-art equipment, allowing a fast and accurate diagnosis . The doctors and the entire team work closely with the pet’s regular vet, always maintaining open lines of communication in order to assure the best 24/7 care. They provide detailed records to both the client and the client’s regular vet.
Denton County ER is located at 4145 I-35, Suite 101, Denton, TX. 940/271-1200 www.dcaer.com