Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some questions/answers that we are frequently asked. If you have additional questions that aren't covered here, please feel free to give us a call at Valparaiso Animal Hospital.
Hospital Hours can be found by scrolling to the bottom of this page. We are open Monday through Saturday, closed on Sunday. On weekdays, the doctors use the time between noon-2 to call owners with answers to questions and test results, catch up on record keeping, and occasionally go shopping for odds and ends that the clinic needs. During this time, staff members are here to answer questions, make appointments, and take messages for the doctors.
2. Do I need to have an appointment?
Walk-ins are welcome as long as Dr. Butler is present, and not actively involved in a surgical procedure. Life-or-death emergencies will be seen first, then scheduled patients, then walk-ins. If you are short on time, we can also accomodate you and your pet by offering to keep your friend for a few hours. We call this a "drop-off" appointment. Dr. Butler will examine your pet, then call you to discuss his or her condition.
3. What forms of payment do you accept?
Cash, Debit Card, Mastercard, Visa, Discover and Care Credit. No checks, please.
4. Can I make payments?
Payment is required at the time of service. We do offer Care Credit, which is a zero interest option that you can apply for from home. Please call if you would like details or click HERE.
5. At what age can I have my pet spayed or neutered?
Spaying or neutering can be done at approximately 6 months of age; though for larger breeds (Retrievers, Shepherds, Great Danes, etc) we prefer to wait to closer to 1 year. Larger breeds can take more time to mature to their full capacity. Your pet is given an exam prior to surgery to help determine whether your pet is healthy enough to undergo the surgical procedure and current vaccinations are required at the time of surgery. Also a pre-anesthetic blood screen is required prior to undergo anesthesia and surgery. For more information regarding surgeries click HERE.
6. What is the pre-anesthetic blood screening?
This is a blood test that is run prior to surgery. It tests the organ functions, blood counts, and clotting function of your pet. The pre-anesthetic blood screening is done to assure safety during surgery and the ability to heal following surgery.
7. How long do the sutures stay in after my pet's surgery?
Procedures involving sutures require them to be removed in 10-14 days following the surgery. Many routine surgeries will have "absorbable" sutures which do not require a return visit.
8. Is it a good idea to let my pet have at least one litter?
The short answer her NO. There are soooo many complications that come from having a litter of puppies including (but not limited to): Pyometras (infections of the uterus), wounds from the physical act of breeding, puppies stuck in the birth canal and dying causing the mother a severe sepsis, mother trying to eat puppies, or pulling them out during birth (thus hurting and/or killing the puppies).
However there are plenty of Advantages to having you pet spayed or neutered. These advantages include decreasing the chances of breast tumors later in life, decreasing the chance of cystic ovaries and uterine infections later in life, decreasing the desire to roam the neighborhood, decreasing the incidence of prostate and testicular cancer later in life, helping prevent spraying and marking, and also decreases the surplus of unwanted puppies and kittens.
9. Do you board pets?
Yes, we do welcome overnight lodgers. We have boarding space for both dogs and cats. Puppies and kittens must have completed their series of booster vaccinations prior to boarding. Adults must be current on vaccinations and have tested negative for intestinal parasites within the last 12 months. For more information, click HERE.