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Emergency Centers?
bentliy posted:
What has everyone's experience been with emergency centers? We have one in my area, but they are terrible.

1. They charge an exorbitant amount of money, simply because it's an after-hours clinic and because it's an emergency. They're taking advantage of peoples' desperation and need to have their animal treated.
2. When you explain you may not afford it, they offer "CareCredit". If you have poor credit or do not qualify, they say "So sad, too bad. We expect payment at time of service and if you can't pay, we can't treat." They have NO other payment options available, and if you live in a city where majority population has low income or poor credit, your animal could die simply because they want their $ and won't arrange payments.
3. I've never had an animal saved by our area center. Ever. They refused to treat my hamster because the doctor was not a small animal doctor. My rabbit broke his own back by accident in the middle of the night and became paralyzed, and they didn't provide any supportive care, refused to xray because I couldn't afford it, and told me to wait for my vet to open. He died 30 minutes before it opened. Another rabbit of mine had diarrhea (which can be fatal) and, after they gave him a bolus/lump of fluid in his scruff and some antibiotics, he died. I found out after the fact that for a rabbit his size and in his condition, they over-hydrated him, which contributed to his death instead of preventing it.
4. Their demeanor... they seem to think that just because they're open after hours, they are a gift from above and you should be grateful that they are even taking your phone call.

I don't know if it's just me, but they really do come off as taking advantage of a horrible situation. They care more about their bottom dollar than helping the animals who need urgent help. There's only one vet in this area who is willing to do emergency calls, and, ironically, he is not only the "ghetto-vet" with the lowest cost and smallest office in the area, but he's a state Senator. He gives out his cell and home numbers, and will meet you at 2AM if necessary.

Animal Planet used to run a show called "Emergency Vets"; they often treated animals and as far as I knew worked with payments... why are more vets not willing to do what they paid good money to go to school for? Help animals? Is money really that much more important than keeping your human AND animal clients healthy so they can CONTINUE to give you profit through vaccines/preventatives?

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William Draper, DVM, better known as "Dr. Will," is a well-known small animal practitioner in the Atlanta, GA area. He grew up in Inglewood,...More

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