Frequently asked questions

Yes, you sure can. There are many natural therapies that we use to improve the health and wellbeing of humans, that have beneficial effects for animals.


What animals can be treated?

It is possible to treat any species, but our vets have most experience with dogs and cats. The animal’s response will vary according to their personality and the duration and severity of their illness. Some individual animals respond to particular types of therapy better than others. Cats are finicky eaters so herbal medications can present a real challenge when treating cats. Many cats will tolerate acupuncture, but there are some that do not.

 

What types of conditions do you mainly treat?

We see mostly chronic illness, like skin disease, cancer, arthritis and auto immune diseases. When illnesses have been developing for a long time, such as cancer, the sooner we see the animal the more likely it is that we can help. Chronic illnesses like cancer have taken years to develop so if your animal is very ill, chances are there is little we can do to reverse that. Often the best we can hope for is to provide as much quality of life for the time that remains, and support and empower you to be a part of that process.

Dr Kathy is a Behaviour vet, so she sees a lot of animals with mental health issues - mainly adolescents and young adults with anxiety and aggression issues. Dr Kathy has a real passion for working with animal behaviour. She loves helping people understand their animals better, and then themselves as part of the same process.

 

What will happen during a consultation?

Firstly, we need to have the animal present, so it very important to have them available. If we are doing a home visit, please ensure that your cats are locked inside.

If this is the first time you have consulted with one of our vets, an initial consultation will be a bit longer because our vets will need to ask a lot of questions to understand what is going on. This will include a full history about your animal, their health, their past, diet, current lifestyle, the condition, diagnostics and tests to date. It is useful if you can organise for your animal’s full medical history to be sent to our vets before the first consultation, but this is not essential. Our vets will need to examine your animal and come up with an interpretation of what is going on with them and then, very importantly, decide what we can do to help your animal. Sometimes our vets may need extra testing to be performed, such as a blood test, urinalysis, or may need to refer for diagnostic testing such as ultrasound, x-rays etc.  A conventional medical diagnosis can be essential, but not always. Our vets will discuss with you which tests are going to be of most benefit to help us help your animal. There are very often cost constraints and these are factored in to what we can and can’t achieve until we arrive at a treatment plan that will give us the best chance of success, with all the relevant factors considered.


How do you treat animals?

Our approach is to develop a treatment plan for your animal with the aim of supporting them back to full, vibrant health. Our vets do this using a variety of techniques - a full list of our Services is available on our page.  As much as possible, our vets will use natural treatments and avoid treatments that may be harmful to your animal. A treatment plan will include advice on an appropriate natural diet, that is minimally processed. It is our shared view that a healthy diet is the key to good health for all of us, human and animal alike. Our vets will also prescribe natural medications, wherever possible. However, conventional pharmaceutical treatment is prescribed where it is appropriate.

An important part of treatment involves counselling you as the owner to have reasonable expectations about what is realistically possible. We aim to treat all people and animals with honesty and respect and expect the same in return. We also encourage open and honest communication with your animal’s primary care vet (if this is not us).

Our vets aim to have a client focused, collaborative approach to treatment, and will tailor treatment plans to suit you, your animal, your values and situation. We also have a collaborative team environment in our business and will consult with each other as vets to ensure we are giving you the best advice we can.

Over time, and continued treatment, the treatment plan will be reviewed and modified as needed, as your animal’s health progresses over time.

 

Why can’t I reach you all the time, whenever I need you?

It is important to realise that we are a small business of 3 vets without a receptionist to respond to phone calls, emails and messages. We value your loyalty and commitment to holistic veterinary care and we endeavour to attend to your messages as soon as we can.

We also have human and animal families of our own and must have time off to attend to our own lives. If we overwork, we burn out and are of no use to anyone.

• If a matter is not urgent then please leave a message and we will get back to you.

• If a matter is urgent, we recommend that your call your regular GP vet clinic or another local vet clinic with surgical, hospital and nursing staff.

If it is after hours, please contact:

• Small Animal Specialist Hospital (SASH) Tuggerah, ph (02) 4311 1311 (www.sashvets.com)
• Newcastle Animal Referral & Emergency Centre, ph 1300 838 669 (www.arecvet.com.au)

We appreciate your patience and understanding.