Thursday, May 29, 2014

An appointment with the new vet

Tuesday morning the boys had an appointment with our new equine vet, the one who absorbed my old vet's practice.  There are things I like and dislike (or at least, don't like as well in comparison to my old vet), most of which isn't really a surprise to me but is worth noting nonetheless.

The first thing, and probably one of the biggest issues for me, is that the new vet is definitely more expensive.  My old vet was one of a dying breed, at least in a big metro area like Denver, as he was a traveling vet with no clinic and therefore less overhead.  The new vet has a large clinic with very nice facilities, which obviously makes a big difference in what she has to charge.  The vaccinations were $10 or $15 more apiece (and each horse had two), and the dental float was $30 more apiece.  It doesn't sound like much, but when you have two horses and they get multiple shots twice a year, it will add up.  Also the dental float was a "discounted" price, the regular price being another $20 more -- a full $50 more than my old vet's pricing -- so it might be that the discount was for the new clients who were absorbed into their practice, and it'll go up to the other (even higher) price next time.

All in all, I think I spent about $100 more than I would have with my old vet.

The other thing I don't really like is that she doesn't give the sedative reversal to wake the horse up after the dental is done.  From what they said, it sounds like she might use a shorter acting sedative and that's why, but I didn't stick around to see if that was actually the case.  I hated seeing my horses still acting drugged when I left the barn (see picture!).

There are some very good things about the new vet, though.  She travels with one or two helpers, which is nice because that leaves me to do less of the work with helping to hold the horse's tongue during the dental and that kind of thing.  She was also extremely fast and thorough with her dental exam, and noted things that my old vet never would have commented on.  (For instance, Panama had ulcers and angulation on the left side of his jaw but not the right, so she believes he may need his TMJ adjusted the next time the chiropractor is out, if he didn't already do it when he was out a couple weeks ago.)

So for the most part, I am pleased, although it's definitely hitting me where it hurts the worst right now: in the pocket!



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