FAQs about Appointments
- Do I need a referral from my veterinarian? No, a referral is not needed to make an appointment. Of course, we welcome (and are grateful for) referrals from primary care veterinarians, but many pet owners call on their own or are referred to our services by trainers, neighbors and pet store cashiers.
- How should I prepare for my housecall appointment? The best way to prepare for a housecall appointment is to leave everything as it is usually is, including litter boxes, dog beds and toys, and even the kitchen. It is helpful to have a variety of food treats available (such as breakfast cereal), or hypoallergenic treats if your pet is on a restricted diet. If you have a dog with a history of biting or snapping at people, you are asked to confine your dog to a separate room or hold your dog on a leash until everyone is settled. Also, Dr. Reisner loves coffee and tea.
- How should I prepare for my clinic appointment? Bring the collar or harness and lead that you would usually use when walking your dog. If you are bringing your cat, please use a secure carrier. Although not necessary, if you have any behavior "accessories" such as a muzzle, Thundershirt™, or clicker, bring them along. For both dogs and cats, bring one or two favorite toys. Finally, if you know that your dog or cat is particularly fond of certain foods (including canned food), bring a little with you.
- I am worried that my dog will be reactive with other dogs in the waiting room. What should I do? If you have a clinic appointment and your dog is reactive towards other dogs or people, alert Dr. Reisner or the front office staff and you will be given instructions. In most cases, it is fine to leave your dog in the car for just a moment while you register. You can then join your dog and hold him or her on a lead outside the clinic until a staff member comes to show you an alternative entryway. You will then be guided either to a secluded area of the waiting room, or to a private exam room.
- Should I take notes during the appointment? You are welcome to take notes, but will also receive a summary of the appointment in a discharge letter, along with relevant handouts. An abbreviated version of this summary will also be sent to your primary care veterinarian.
- Why do appointments last 2 hours or more? The length of behavior appointments can vary, depending on the behavior problems you would like to address, and depending also on your goals for the appointment. We can accommodate any need to keep the appointment short, especially if you are seeking only a diagnosis. More typically, though, the appointment starts with an interview (you will also have completed a questionnaire before the appointment), then a physical exam (when possible) and assessment, and finally recommendations for managing the problem. Some people need more time, and some problems are more complicated, than others.
If you have a question about appointments that still remains unanswered, feel free to contact us.