New Vet, New Hope


Puck’s grooming problems have not gotten any better since his vet visit visit a few months ago. I hesitated bringing him back to the vet because I did not want to subject him to more drugs that would not help the problem.

I did some research and even though holistic vets are rare in this area, I did find a veterinary practice that understands natural medicine. It is called the Animal and Bird Medical Center in Palm Harbor, Florida. They were pretty highly rated and my only concern was comments about how expensive they are but I figured that a little extra money would be worth it if I could find the root of Puck’ problem.

I made an appointment for 10:30 a.m. Saturday morning. As usual, I put the carrier out early so the cats would get used to it being there. Of course, everyone has to smell it or get inside of it first. When it was almost time to go Puck knew something was up and got nervous. He led me on a big chase around the house. Fortunately I closed our bedroom door so he couldn’t hide under the bed. That would have been a nightmare. As it was I had a hard time catching him.

The car ride was not bad. Puck did not cry or make any attempt to get out of his carrier. He just quietly accepted his circumstance.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

We got to the vet about 20 minutes early and I started filling out the paperwork right away. Before I was finished, Puck’s name was called and we were ushered into a nearby examination room. A couple of vet techs were there and they helped get Puck out of his carrier. It was a much quicker start then our last vet visit where we waited a long time for someone to show up. They weighed Puck and did whatever else vet techs do. They then left saying the doctor would be in soon.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

Our cat Puck's vet visit

We waited about 5 minutes or so before the vet came in. While we were waiting, Puck didn’t know what to do with himself.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

He eventually settled in under a chair.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

I thought it would be better if he wasn’t under the chair when the doctor came in so I picked him up and put him on my lap.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

When the vet came in, he asked some questions and then examined Puck. He also looked at the records from the last vet. He said that he thinks that there is a few things going on. It, could, in part, be a psychological problem, he told me, but he also had said there is a physical aspect to the problem as well.

Puck has small bumps on his body that is some kind of skin condition and I don’t remember what the vet called it. He did indicate it is probably an allergic reaction to something. He also said it could be the result of mites and wanted to eliminate that possibility so he suggested doing a test for mites.

Looking over the previous vet records, he notice they gave Puck steroids and antibiotics. He said steroids can be effective but they are like using a nuclear bomb when all you need is a gun. He also said the effects do not last very long so he was not a big fan of recommending steroids for Puck. He did, however, suggest that antibiotics might help him. His main concern was finding the source of Puck’s allergy. He suggested a limited ingredient diet that consisted of limited proteins. In other words, a cat food that not only has limited ingredients but also has protein from only one animal that is not likely to be in his current food, such as rabbit or bison. He also suggested getting a Feliway plugin to help with the psychological end of this problem.

He left for a while to work up his recommendations. Puck just stayed on the exam table. I picked him up to put him on my lap but Puck decided he would feel better behind my back where it was safe.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

When the vet returned with his recommendations I agreed that he should do the test for mites but I said I would prefer to wait on the antibiotics to see if we can find the problem naturally. He left and came back a short time later with one of the techs and scraped a few of the bumps from Puck’s skin.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

When he returned he said that there were no sign of mites. That was good news and bad news because if there were mites at least we would know how to treat the problem.

When I went up front to pay,  I was pleasantly surprised to find the bill was less than $85, about half of the last vet. That is because drugs are expensive and solving problems without drugs is usually healthier in the long term and cheaper too. The expensive part is the special food I have to buy. The vet had it for $64 for an eight pound bag of rabbit food and about $2.50 a can for the wet food. The wet food was actually reasonably priced but I needed to find a cheaper source for the dry food because I needed to feed three cats for three months. Feeding Puck one food and Chris and Frankie another is just too difficult.

The ride home was better for Puck. He seemed less nervous and even seemed interested in looking around.

Our cat Puck's vet visit

When we got home Puck was the center of attention for a little while.

IMG_20151212_120810

But ultimately it was his carrier that got the most attention.

IMG_20151212_120720 chris and frankie

All in all, I am happy with this vet and would go back again. We were there for a long time, perhaps an hour and a half, but I never felt ignored. The vet and techs spent more time then usual (at least more time than I am used to) with us and most of the rest of the time was spent waiting for recommendations or test results.

What do you think? I’d like to hear about your vet.

Related Posts:

Puck’s Vet Adventure

Puck’s Bald Spot Returns

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21 thoughts on “New Vet, New Hope

  1. onespoiledcat

    Even though the suggested food is pricey, it would be worth it for a “test period” to see how Puck reacts – the new vet may have it figured out so why not at least try it for a while. That one photo of Puck with is eyes big as saucers is amazing…..it’s priceless. Poor guy – I hope the new food regiment is the answer…..food is SO often the issue with allergies!

    Pam

    Reply
  2. onespoiledcat

    REGIMEN (!) not REGIMENT! whoops! Oh and I forgot to answer your question about vets. Sam has seen the same vet for 16 years and we think he’s wonderful. Conservative but thorough and truly seems to CARE. That’s the BEST combination as far as we’re concerned!

    Pam

    Reply
  3. random felines

    sounds like you have a found a good place. we love a vet that is willing to listen, do the tests but maybe hold off on the shotgun approach until other things can be tried. and we love that wide eyed picture of Puck as well. hope they can figure things out for him

    Reply
  4. pilch92

    I hope the new foods help. That was a great price and it sounds like they were very nice and didn’t make you wait long.

    Reply
  5. kittiesblue

    The importance of having a vet you trust cannot be undervalued. We’ve been going to the same practice for over 30 years. They are the best. Sure hope you get to the source of Puck’s problems. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

    Reply
  6. Dennis

    Puck is trusting you so much, it’s clearly visible. I do for example like the photo where he decided that he is safe behind you, that is cute 🙂 I hope his problems will go away.

    Reply
  7. The Island Cats

    It sounds like a good experience with this vet, though you still don’t have a difinitive answer to what’s causing Puck’s problem. I would try the limited ingredient food. Ask the vet if they would write you a script because you can find the prescription diet foods cheaper online. My vet writes me scripts for food all the time.

    Reply
  8. Deziz World

    We are sorry to hear dat Puck’s not feelin’ well, but ouch, dat’s a lot of money fur any bag of food. Have you checked Chewy.com? We like da Wysong Rabbit. But several other companies make foods with other protein sources including rabbit fur less than what you paid. Weez a little out of it at da moment and can’t fink of all da options, but there are purrlenty. Good luck on da food front and weez’ll be purrayin’ Puck gets all better.

    Luv ya’

    Dezi and Lexi

    Reply
  9. Michelle

    Evangers makes a less expensive canned rabbit but it is not complete, it is meant to be fed supplementary. It is simply just rabbit, comes up to 13oz cans, you can refrigerate it. For dry food your not really going to find as much limited ingredients for any cheaper, rabbit is most expensive next to venison and pheasant. I don’t know how you feed but I would feed the cats separate to cut costs.

    My one male with UTD and allergies eats raw primal rabbit and cost almost $100 a month.Only way cheaper is to make his food yourself using a custom recipe from balanceit.com but you would need rabbit meat readily and inexpensive in your area.

    Reply
    1. Charles Huss Post author

      I have considered making my own raw car food. I only need a good grinder but what is stopping me is a local source of Good quality meat and also the cats hate the frozen raw food I used to buy, even when mixed with canned food.

      Reply

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