What do I do in the case of an emergency and your clinic isn’t open?

In an EMERGENCY, call the clinic at 519-367-2691. Our answering service will take your message and have a Veterinarian contact you right away. Our clinic shares on-call duties with the Walketon-Hanover Veterinary Clinic, and together we are on-call 24/7/365 for you and your pets/ farm animals!

What forms of payment do you accept?

We are able to accept cash, debit, Visa, and Master Card. We do not accept cheques or allow credit to be placed on account for future payments. All clientele visiting for small animal appointments are required to pay at the time of service.

Our only exception to this is our farming clients who pay for their large animal-related bills via cheque. 

Do you offer any payment plans?

We do not offer charging or payment plans. We require that you pay for services provided at the time of your pet’s visit. If you have any questions about our payment policy, please feel free to ask. We do accept many forms of payment, Cash, Debit Visa or MasterCard, however, we do not accept Cheques.

Do you declaw cats?

No, we are proud to announce that we do not declaw cats.

We feel that the declawing surgery (which involves partial amputation of each toe) puts cats through an unnecessary amount of surgical and postoperative pain with no medical benefit to your cat.

Cats who are declawed in the hopes of preventing their natural clawing behavior will often develop other unwanted habits such as inappropriate urination. We feel the risk of life-long post-surgical complications including arthritis and aggression are too great.

There are many humane alternatives to prevent destructive clawing and we are happy to discuss these with you at any time. We can also provide additional facts if you wish the learn more. Please give the clinic a call with your questions as we would be happy to help answer those for you!

My pet is on an extended vaccine protocol (i.e. 2-3 year Rabies). Do I still need to come in annually?

Yes! It is important for your veterinarian to perform a wellness checkup every year (and preferably 2 times a year for senior pets). Our pets age faster then we do, and with 1 human year equalling 5-7 of their years, it’s no wonder that we can see significant changes in that time period. 

Bringing your pets in annually allows your vet to get to know what is normal and what isn’t. This patient-client-vet relationship can be very valuable in aiding a diagnosis. 

Having their wellness visit up to date saves a lot of hassle when it comes to medications. By law, we cannot dispense any over the counter products (flea and tick prevention, dewormers, etc.) or prescribed ongoing medications (i.e. Metacam) unless your pet has been seen within the past year.  

When is the appropriate time to spay or neuter my pets?

When planning your pets’ spay (female) or neuter (male) surgeries your veterinary clinic is the best at helping you schedule for the day. The general rule is 6 months of age for both cats and dogs, males and females. 

Recent studies have shown that keeping your large breed male dog intact for up to a year of age can help with bone and ligament growth (torn ligaments are often seen in large breed dogs).

This can be taken into consideration when planning your dog’s surgery date but only when training issues, potential roaming (greater risk of being hit by a car), behavioural issues (such as urine marking in the house, humping, aggression, etc.), or risk of breeding an intact female dog are not a concern/ not possible. 

Female dogs, cats, and male cats do not apply to the above and it is better to have them fixed at 6 months of age. You can talk to your veterinarian and they would love to help you decide what is best for your pet. 

Should I let my female pet have 1 heat or 1 litter before I get her spayed?

No, there are no medical OR behavioral benefits to either of these scenarios. Getting your pet spayed at 6 months of age before her first heat is the most beneficial for her. After they go through a heat their reproductive organs (uterus and ovaries) have a much larger blood supply to them. This means that when they are removed there is a larger amount of blood being removed with them. The tissues are also more easily torn and your pet will be under anesthesia longer due to the increased amount of time needed to ligate and clamp off all of the blood vessels to prevent bleeding. 

Getting your pet spayed before their first heat also lowers their chances of developing mammary tumors. After their 2nd heat, their chances of developing mammary tumors are 26%, and every heat they go through after that increases their chances by 5%!! Being spayed before their 1st heat decreases this percentage to  only 0.6%! 

Another great benefit of not allowing your pet to have the opportunity to breed is you are personally helping decrease the animal population and increase the number of pets that are being rescued from shelters!

My pet is old, does it really need to be vaccinated?

Yes, just because your pet is getting older and their energy levels require less time spent outdoors, does not mean that vaccines should be skipped.

Public Health is still finding increased incidences of not only Rabies (a disease which vaccination against it is mandatory by law), but Leptospirosis as well (a bacteria shed in the urine of raccoons, skunks, etc., that is transmittable to your pets and family members), which damages the kidneys of animals and people.

Your pets’ immunity may also be compromised in their senior years, making protection against diseases even more important! Talk with your vet about customizing a vaccine regimen for your pet to ensure proper protection.

Why does it cost so much to provide veterinary care for my pet?

The fees you pay for veterinary services take into consideration a number of factors, including the costs to compensate your veterinarian and veterinary team for their professional services and the expenses involved in maintaining the hospital and equipment. When someone decides to adopt a pet, he or she needs to be prepared to include annual veterinary care in the overall cost of owning the pet.

Thanks to advances in veterinary medicine, pets are living longer, which means you may be spending more over the lifetime of your pet. However, in general, the annual cost of caring for a pet hasn’t increased much over the past several decades. (Consider how much the costs of many professional services, such as human healthcare, have risen over that same period!) Certain advanced procedures may come at a higher cost, but as the owner, you decide what care you want to provide your pet.

It may seem like you’re paying more for your pet’s care than for your own, but that perception may stem from the fact that you’re paying the entire cost of a service or procedure, rather than a percentage or set fee determined by an insurance company. If you want to save money on your pet’s care, there are several pet insurance plans available. These plans may cover or help keep costs down for many routine veterinary services, prescriptions, medical conditions, and diseases. Your veterinary hospital may also offer a third-party healthcare line of credit as an option. Be sure to ask at your hospital if they accept any of these plans.

What vaccinations does my dog/cat really need?

Your veterinarian will determine which vaccinations are appropriate for your dog or cat, based on individual factors, such as lifestyle and health status. Veterinarians commonly recommend that dogs be vaccinated against rabies, distemper, and parvovirus and that cats be vaccinated against rabies and panleukopenia (feline distemper). Additional vaccines, such as feline leukemia virus (FeLV), feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), and Bordetella (kennel cough), are recommended based on your cat or dog’s risk.

Many of these diseases can be fatal to your pet. Preventing them is far easier and less expensive than treatment. If you would like more information on vaccines, ask your veterinarian.

What education does a veterinarian need?

Most veterinary degrees require at least 6 years of study at the university level, including a minimum of 2 years of pre-veterinary education and 4 years in a veterinary medicine program. Veterinary students usually spend 4,000 hours or more in classroom, laboratory, and clinical study.

To stay current with veterinary medicine, techniques, and technology, practicing veterinarians read scientific journals and attend continuing education symposiums, seminars, and courses.

Can I get health insurance for my pet? If so, what’s covered?

Several companies offer health insurance for dogs and cats (and other pets). These plans have premiums and deductibles, just like human health insurance plans. The premiums and deductibles vary based on the level of coverage you select. Many routine services, such as office visits and diagnostic testing, are covered, as well as prescriptions, procedures, and surgeries for a wide variety of diseases and conditions. However, there are restrictions and limits, as well as certain guidelines to follow, including making sure your pet receives regular preventive care.

Your veterinary hospital should have more information about pet health insurance.

I just got a new puppy/kitten. How much will veterinary care cost during the first year? And how much should I expect to spend annually after that?

Puppies and kittens generally have the same health requirements: an initial veterinary visit that includes a physical exam, vaccinations, and tests for parasites. Follow-up visits include the rest of the puppy/kitten series of vaccinations, as well as treatment and preventives for parasites. Most veterinary hospitals can give you a basic estimate for these services, and most of the fees for these services shouldn’t vary significantly from hospital to hospital.

Why should I have my pet spayed or neutered? Why are these procedures so expensive?

Spaying and neutering can have major benefits for your pet, including lowering or preventing the risk of several diseases and types of cancer. Your veterinarian can discuss these benefits with you. In addition, spaying and neutering help control the pet population by reducing the number of unwanted pets.

Spaying and neutering are surgical procedures that require your pet to be put under anesthesia. The cost of these procedures takes into account the anesthesia, your veterinary team’s time and expertise, monitoring, drapes, suture material, and hospitalization. Spaying or neutering your pet is much less expensive than feeding and caring for litters of unwanted puppies or kittens or dealing with potential pregnancy complications.