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Veterinary Coalition to Target Drop in Client Visits DVM NEWSMAGAZINE October 1, 2010 http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm/Breaking+News/Veterinary-coalition-to-target-drop-in-client-visi/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/688915?contextCategoryId=47831

A couple of quotes from the article: "At presstime, a planning meeting is slated for November to bring leaders in practice and industry together in an attempt to carve out a series of strategies to help reverse a trend of dwindling client visits. "

"Heartworm prevention represents a huge opportunity for practitioners, Payne says, especially if the profession can improve compliance rates and convert pet owners who are not currently giving heartworm preventives to their pets. In fact, he believes a wholesale push could offset losses from flea and tick product revenue for practices. "

 

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I quit going to a vet I've used for the past 18 (yes, eighteen) years. This vet is less than a 5 minute drive from my house. Instead, we now drive 30 - 45 minutes (depending on time of day and day of week) to a vet two counties out because of their fantastic care and customer service.

I use shot clinics and spay/neuter clinics for all basic stuff. There are a couple spay/neuter clinics here, one did a fine job but I just wasn't comfortable with them when all was said and done with. Found another that charges more, but still much less than clinic prices and it's spotlessly clean, great staff, nice upper class clients. In a great part of town.

Stopped used the clinic I've used for 18 yrs for a number of reasons. Can never get in same day and rarely next day, always claim to be "booked solid" but there's never anyone there when I arrive. The clinic is always empty, and I'm always EARLY for appt's, and yet I still end up never getting in on time. Horrible customer service. Have to argue every time I'm there about why my dogs don't get yearly vacs, and listen to the usual science diet speach. Every single time. Really now?

Pricing is ridiculous. For ex: puppy shots - Dante needed a booster set of his puppy shots as well as rabies and KC vac for training classes. DHPP, rabies, and KC - our vet charges $150+ for this. That is INSANE. I just took him to the shot clinic, we were in and out in under 20 minutes. They did a full workup and all vac's for $35. It's no wonder clinics can't stay in business and are seeing client's stop coming.

I'm sick of them refusing to sell nearly anything without seeing the dog. They will no longer accept outside vet visits (the shot clinic) as current records, so they refuse to update my dogs shot records and blooddraws which means they will frquently not sell HW meds (depends on who it is) and wouldn't sell a NON PRESCRPTION dewormer as a broad spectrum dewormer without a visit and fecal from each dog. The dogs aren't known to have worms, we just wanted to hit 'em all with a broad spectrum safe dewormer since we have an 8 wk old baby at home and have had several wormy fosters in the last year. That's fine - I ordered it online, shipped it here, and saved money anyway. The dogs have had the dewormer and my mind is at ease again.

Also tired of the insane overcharging, had my SO's debit card hit twice for one visit and they blamed it on the bank (it wasn't the banks fault), and in general tired of the clinic. So 5 dogs and we switched practices to someone who ended up being better, charging less, and in general understanding that we bring our dogs to the clinic if they are hurt or ill, but otherwise we use shot clinics and spay/neuter clinics for all basic stuff.
 
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