Do you accept walk-ins?
Patients are seen by appointment only, but if your pet is in urgent need of a vet we will do our best to quickly work you in.
I’m a new client, do I need to bring anything for my visit?
We welcome all new patients to our hospital and we are very pleased to have you as a client. We will do everything we can to serve you and your pet. If you have been to another vet previously, please have your pet’s records from there, or a number to contact them at so we can have that information faxed to us. We would also recommend that you arrive early to fill out any new client paperwork and have your pet fasted in case the veterinarian recommends running bloodwork.
Why does my pet need bloodwork?
We like to test for bloodwork at least yearly to make sure that all their organs are functioning properly, and twice yearly for our older patients. This is especially important to test before going under an anesthetic procedure to make sure the body will be able to handle the anesthetics in its system. Doing bloodwork when your pet is healthy is important in that it gives us a base to work with so that if anything abnormal shows up later, we’ll actually know that it’s abnormal. As for older patients, things can deteriorate faster for them so it’s important to keep track of those things. All of this is to ensure that your pet’s health is monitored closely and we can fix things before they get out of hand. Many times symptoms of something won’t show up until it is very serious. Pets are very good at hiding what’s wrong with them and sometimes bloodwork is the only way to know for sure. To learn more, please visit our page “Why Blood Work?“.
Why does it cost so much for a spay/neuter here compared to other places?
We try to ensure a higher quality of care here than most other places offer. We take the time to examine animals before surgeries, run bloodwork so we know they can be safely put under anesthetic, and use high quality anesthetics. There is a technician monitoring your pet the entire time they are under for a procedure. We have equipment set up to monitor heart rates, oxygen levels, breathing rates and blood pressure. We might cost more, but we believe that your pet’s safety is of the highest importance. Being an AAHA accredited facility means having the best for your pet.
Why does my pet need its blood pressure taken?
Pets can become hypertensive and suffer from high blood pressure just like us. Hypertension can lead to other serious medical problems if left untreated. We recommend blood pressure measurements for older cats especially since high pressure can often lead to blindness.
Foxtail is a type of grass that is very prevalent in San Diego. The seeds of the plant attach themselves easily to pets fur and can work their way into the skin because of their barbed shape. They can actually travel into your pet and cause serious damage. Foxtails are often found in ears or paws so check your pet thoroughly after walks. If your pet starts sneezing profusely after a walk in the brush then take them in to be looked at because a foxtail might be stuck up their nose!
Do I need flea and heartworm protection year round?
Yes. Here in San Diego it never really gets cold or hot enough to kill off fleas so we highly recommend treating year round. We have some excellent products available, both oral and topical. As for heartworm, we see enough positive cases during the year to warrant treatment. Although our numbers are not as high as other parts of the country, that number can mean everything when it’s your dog. Yearly heartworm tests should always be done regardless of medication.
When are you open?
Monday – Saturday the hospital opens for surgery drop off at 7:30am with appointments starting at 8:00am and closing at 6pm. Sunday we are closed.
Can I get my dog DNA tested?
Yes! We offer Wisdom Panels which test either your dogs saliva or blood sample to help determine what breeds they are mixed with. Please let us know ahead of time before you would like to request this as we need to order the tests for you. You can visit the Wisdom Panel website for more information regarding their testing.
Can I Board my pet with you?
We offer limited boarding to our clients, though we are not set up as a “doggy day care”. We are happy to accommodate, feed, walk and medicate your pets while they stay with us. We do not have anyone staying overnight with them. Please call ahead for availability.
Yes we do! We offer HomeAgain microchips for the safety of your pets.
What are anal glands? Why does my dog need them expressed?
If you see your pet scooting their rear along the carpet and licking their butt it’s more than likely because they need their anal glands expressed. Dogs and cats have two small anal glands just inside their anus that express a strong smelling secretion. Generally they are able to express it naturally just by defecating but sometimes they may need help. Anal glands can also become infected sometimes and your pet may need antibiotics. Groomers may offer to express glands, but often they only do so by squeezing the outside and that doesn’t get all of the material inside. If you’re concerned your pet’s rear has a foul odor and seems bothered by it let us check! Dogs are far more often in need of it than cats.
Can my pet get motion sickness?
Yes, some pets can experience motion sickness when traveling. If your pet vomits during car rides let us know and we might be able to offer some suggestions.
Yes! We have found that one of the best ways to give your pet a pill or capsule is to use Pill Pockets. They are both tasty to your pet, convenient for you, and helps to avoid any throat irritations. Pills and capsules should always be given in something and this is the easiest method. We have them available for both cats and dogs.
My pet is slowing down, but that’s normal as they age, right?
Pets can loose some of their steam as they age but that doesn’t always mean that there’s nothing you can do about it. Age is not a sickness and many symptoms of getting older can be helped. Stiff, arthritic joints can be helped greatly with supplements or anti-inflammatories. Sensitive stomachs and allergies can often mean a diet change. Bi-yearly exams and bloodwork can help detect any underlying problems that need attention. So if your pet is slowing down with age, let us know! We can offer some helpful tips to get them looking more like their younger selves.
Do you offer de-skunking?
Sorry, we don’t have any de-skunking tools to offer ourselves, but the Humane Society does offer a handy home remedy that will hopefully get your pets smelling fresh again. Check it out!
Where do I go after hours?
We don’t take after-hours emergency calls at the hospital or have staff here 24 hours. The doctors feel that emergency and critical care are better addressed by people who do only that, so we refer emergencies and patients needing intensive overnight care to practices that specialize in emergency and critical care medicine.
Call (858) 279-3000 for a referral
We refer after-hour emergencies to these practices:
|North County||Veterinary Specialty Hospital||(858) 875-7500|
|East County||Pet Emergency and Specialty Center||(619) 462-4800|
|South County||Emergency Animal Hospital and Referral Center||(619) 299-2400|
|North East County||
California Veterinary Specialists