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Discussion Starter #1
I think I know what the answer to this is going to be but maybe others have had the same issue and its not been discussed. What to do when you LOVE your vet but CANNOT STAND the staff?

Since I'll be getting a puppy hopefully (animal-less currently), I would feel so much more comfortable going to the guy that I love dearly, the one who took care of Holli for 14 years, but these girls at the desk are horrible, just horrible(!), and I have been thinking for a long time that its time to move on. Should I start fresh with a new puppy, or do you think you'd tough it out and after the first few critical months, start looking? I have complained and complained. Apparently my vet who used to own the practice, sold to some chain type of thing so he is the "managing" vet but his hands are tied when it comes to this, and to be honest I just dont think he has a mean bone in his body to be able to give a stern talking to to these women. I spoke with him about it and he was visibly upset but things turned the same shortly after my next visit.

They are NEVER nice - and I mean never. They are SO miserable! They have forgotten to leave messages with my vet, they act like you are bothering them with any question. I just hate going there, even calling. They never greet you at the door, and its not just me, my boyfriend says the same thing when hes been there. They are rotten. Its almost like there is some old blood there that think they own the place or something, because a new person will start out nice but you can see a change in personality after they've been there a short while.

The next thing would be how do you start the search for a new vet, and how far is too far to travel to one? I know a few to try, but I've always been afraid of a long vet commute just in case I ever had an emergency, but then again I didnt in 14 years so maybe that point is moot? I had Holli to the most wonderful vet as he does holistic medicine as well and I wanted 5 opinions when she was diagnosed, but its over an hour drive. I seriously think I should move just to be closer to him but I dont think that will be an easy sell to the boyfriend... This is harder for me than changing doctors I swear. Any thoughts are appreciated!

Thanks!
janet
 

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My first thought was to talk to the vet about it. But since you have done so repeatedly I would start looking for a new vet. Talk to other dog owners. I took Lexi to 3 vets before I found one that I liked. You can even make appointments to interview the vet before you get the puppy. You might have to pay for an office visit (not sure). I would try to stay within 15 or 20 minutes from your house.
 

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well i have a question for you..being a vet student. what chain bought him out..was it VCA or banfield, or someone else? i have an externship lined up w/ a VCA practice in Tampa, but i dont know if i want to work for a place that doesnt allow the vet to have contol over the fireing of his/her staff.

as far as searching for a vet..it seems like ur vet understands ur predicament...maybe u can ask him if he has a collegue in the area he would reccomend. im sure he would totally understand. also ask friends about vets in the area..and u can also interview vets...set up an appointment and talk to them, see if they are the type of person you would trust with your baby. visit the staff, see how they react. i dont think u could never drive too far to see a vet, but u r right about the emergency part. you need to have someone close by. is there not a lot of vets in ur area? good luck in ur search. im sure u will find someone great. i know a lot of future vets and they are all wonderful people. it takes a truley careing person to make it through vet school...believe me!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well its VCA, but it could very well be just this office. I know some of these girls were there before I started taking Holli, and passed through my first vet who we used for my childhood animals, and then on to this one, and continued through the buy-out. I don't know if they have a seniority of sorts, or if my vet, like I said, is just too much of a softy.

I have spoken with at least 3-4 other people (one in vet school who was applying there), and everyone has the same comments about these girls. Everyone I talk to is leaving or has left. All these years I've dealt with it, but I won't any longer.

That idea about talking to my vet and letting him know I am finally leaving is a good one. Its going to be hard though because he is so sweet. I will continue my search for local places. I just feel like my vet knows every imagineable scenario that could happen. I wish I could find a specialist in toy breeds or something, with loads of experience, but it seems like everyone is a vet is a vet is a vet. Unless they do exotics or something. I never thought about scheduling an appointment just to meet them, they wont think I'm a nut?
I might do that!

Thanks folks!
janet
 

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I can share my VCA experience...when our cat was with us, we took her to an animal hospital that was "bought out" by VCA. She was in the middle of treatment for kidney disease, so we didn't want to change vets, but essentially that's what happened...because all of the vets who were previously at this hospital left. To me that says something significant. The staff was ok, but they seemed more about pushing supplements (non-prescribed), grooming, and boarding facilities. And about a month after my poor kitty passed, we received a reminder card that she was due for her next rabies shot and to please make an appointment asap. I want my vet to know my pet and me...just like my children's doctor knows us. It's as much about the quality of care and compassion as it is anything else. I'd say shop around before your new addition arrives. You'll be much happier in the long run.
 

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thanks saltymalty..i had posted a while back asking if anyone had n e experience w/ VCA, but at the time no on had...thanks for the info.
 

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You already got good advice from all the other posts and I agree with them. Since you already talked to the vet and nothing has been done, the only thing left is for you to find another vet. It's sad, but they don't leave you a choice. I changed my dentist because of the staff.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I don't doubt they will send me a reminder- and I will just die. You are right about having compassion. Holli was very sick for quite a few months, yet when I would go in they would ask if I knew she was due for rabies, did I bring a stool sample, etc. and I was calling or visiting at least once a week. They acted like I just fell onto the planet and you'd think after 14 years someone would have recognized me or had the slightest clue about my case.

I just found out after that someone I know has a son with a maltese and a tragic thing happened. They needed to have her put to sleep and those girls refused to put her in that day, so he went down there and also complained (flipped out from what they tell me).

I even made a complaint to the main office in California, who put me in touch with a regional person who made it known to my vet, but I dont know what happened. You know, the more I hear the less likely I am to go back there, vet or no. I'm glad I did bring this up. Thanks!
 
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