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post #11 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 10:30 PM
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Thanks Karen! I just added the Puppia harness and matching leash! I already had the Petsafe 3 in 1 on my list. Someone else must have recommended that one! At what age can you start real walks?
You should really not be taking them on “exercise” type walks before they are full grown, so at least 9 months to a year old for walks of more than about half a mile, especially on pavement. that is different than “sniff walks”, where you follow the puppy around on a leash. Thta is fine, and you can really do it for as long as you want. Likewise, free play-type running around is fine. The puppy will listen to his own body under those circumstances and wind down when he gets tired.

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A couple of vets here said to microchip when they get spayed/neutered since they are under anesthesia and it won't hurt. I liked that idea unless anyone else says otherwise.
That’s fine, I guess, if you plan to spay or neuter early. More and more evidence is suggesting that if possible, it it may be better to hold off spay/neutering until the puppy is at least a year old. If this is your choice, you may waant to re-think waiting that long to have the puppy chipped. Yes, it’s a LITTLE uncomfortable, but not much, and it is over in an instant. I think that the time when you are MOST likely ro lose your dog is wduring their first year, when they are the least well trained. Kodi wa schipped when he was neutered, because he’s olde enough that I still beleives that no responsible dog owner would CONSIDER letting a boy dog keep his “equipment” a day after he turned 6 months old. . I was much better educated when the girls came along. Pixel wasn’t spayed until she was 18 months old, and Panda is 4 years old and still not spayed. So they both had to be chipped independently of their spay proceedures. I was ther, it wasn’t “horrible” for either one. A little “yip” and it was over. They have complained more about nail trimming, frankly.

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Still trying to figure out which vet to use. After polling friends there seem to be 4 vets that everyone uses within a 15-minute drive from my house. I called to speak to someone at each of them but none of them would let me speak to a Dr, only to the front desk or one had me speak to a very opinionated vet tech. I didn't love him, he told me repeatedly that I should have wanted a female, not a male Havanese! Of course, now I am second-guessing myself! One place took my name and number over a week ago and said someone would get back to me, but they didn't. I will try them again but not a great first impression. I wanted to know about vaccines mostly but also get a sense of who they are. I'd ideally like to find a vet that doesn't push more vaccines than needed. The breeder suggested the Dodds protocol however none of them have heard of that. I think the Doctors themselves might know it, but a receptionist would not.
I think I would tell these people that you understand that Vovid has changed the way things are being done, but that you are making a decision on choosing a practice, and you NEED to talk to the vet. Tell them that you are willing to pay for an office visit, but you want to at least have a phone conversation with the vet that will be your new puppies primary physician. (They SHOULD do this sort of “meet and greet”as a courtesy, for no fee. Most vets in this area do it, as do pediatricians fer heaven’s sakes! But if tou have to pay for an office visit, IMO, it is still worth it to get your questions answered, and make sure it is the right practice for you.

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I feel bad that due to Covid I won't be able to go in with my puppy. They all pick up the dog from the car now and call you on the phone after. I worked at a vet's office in High School and while the Doctors were great, it was just another day of work. I would love to be there so they aren't scared of going with a stranger to a strange place. The training books all say to give treats every step of the way at the first vet visit. I am guessing they won't bother with that as much if the owner isn't there to watch.
That’s another thing to ask about. Ask if the staff has had training in fear-free handling techniques. If not, you may want to look elsewhere. More and more veterinary offices DO include this type of training for their techs and vets now. It’s not only safer and kinder for the animals, but it is safer for the humans too.


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post #12 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:29 PM
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It know it SHOULDN’T be like this right now, but it might be easier with the current chaos to find alternative ways to get a reliable referral if you’re stuck waiting for return phone calls or info from the vet’s staff. I think because everyone is spreading apart appointments and there are so many changes, people just forget, and schedules run longer, etc. I have run into these kinds of problems both with regard to my son’s “essential” appointments for his health needs, and as we resume normal healthcare appointments in our family.

I have also learned the office staff really do not represent the vet’s opinions when it comes to many things. A very nice staff member at the vet’s office also had a lot of opinions about gender (and teaching “no”), but I don’t believe for a second my vet buys into that. Gender differences are often negligible, and many of the behaviors attributed to it cross genders, like marking. And regardless of gender, subtle temperament differences are not the same as behavior, and behavior is shaped by people, which I know my vet believes. However, I don’t see this as a reason to avoid this office because the same receptionist is good with my dog, has fit me into the schedule multiple times, and is friendly. And most importantly, I like the vet.

If you’re traveling to pick up your puppy you can’t just go to the breeder’s vet, but if they have placed a puppy with a family in your area, perhaps they could put you in contact with someone. If your search for breeders led to any breeders near you that shared your philosophies, they might have referrals, even if you’re getting a puppy elsewhere. They are invested in the well being of the breed regardless of whether or not you get a puppy from them. I wonder if it would be useful or even possible right now to seek out referrals from members of a local Havanese club.
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post #13 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:53 PM
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If I have to pull hen’s teeth for a vet to tell me their vaccine protocol and position on titers, then I am out of there. They should be able to tell you these things in a simple email. Depending on the answers I got and whether I needed additional information, I would go further and make an actual appointment to talk to the vet. One of the number one things I look for in a vet is communication. If they are not communicating now, they are not going to communicate later. Sorry, I have a great vet now but suffered through a few to get here. Just trying to spare others.
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post #14 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 02:02 PM
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Thank you EvaElizabeth and Karen!

This is the response that I got yesterday from the receptionist at one office who I spoke to a week ago. I think I will just cross them off my list. I like to plan in advance and don't want to be distracted once I have the puppy. While I realize that this is early (puppy is expected in the fall) right now I am home all day, school is winding down and I have the time to research this. I specifically said "when the Doctor has time" and "no rush." Am I over-reacting? If it's this hard to get past the gatekeeper it doesn't seem worth it to me. Haven't heard back from either of the other two yet, but I just sent it yesterday... Will keep looking for other offices in the meantime.

Good Afternoon Stephanie,

Unfortunately right now the doctors are very busy, I know we spoke over the phone a few days ago. Our doctors here are very accommodating to their patients. When you have your puppy please feel free to give us a call and we can set something up so one of our doctors can meet you and your new puppy and they would be more than happy to answer any further questions you have.

Regards,
Carolina

We are traveling from NY to NC to get the puppy so, I definitely can't use their vet but I will reach out to see if they know anyone around here. I didn't speak to any other breeders besides Pam King, whose list I am on. I found this website when I first searched Havanese online, saw their names mentioned a few times and they seem to be very well respected here, and I signed up! I am in Westchester County, NY. Does anyone know of a local Havanese Club? I will google that in a minute...

As for the early spay/neuter, both of the offices where I spoke to someone (the receptionist above, and a vet tech at the other) said they like to spay/neuter at 6 mos. The both mentioned for male dogs to do it before they mark on furniture and before the lift their leg up to pee. Not sure why that is important, probably should have asked but it seemed like that was less desirable. For the female, they said to do it before the first heat. Again, I'd love to speak to a doctor about this, and it was one of the questions I asked in my email. Sorry to sound so uneducated, but I haven't read up much on this yet, what is the benefit in waiting? Why would they want to do it earlier than is now suggested?

I would gladly pay for a consult... Maybe that's the way to go. It seems so silly that I'd have to but maybe that's the way it is here. I had a much easier time interviewing and choosing a pediatrician than I am having to find a vet...

I looked on the fear-free certification site and no one near me is certified in that. I did ask if they have any training in that. That looks to be exactly what I am looking for.
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post #15 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 02:07 PM
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Mudpuppymama, YES!! That's how I am starting to feel!!! I asked the receptionist above if they use thimerasol free vaccines. She didn't know what that was. Put me on hold to ask someone else. Came back and said I don't know but this is the brand we use, you can look it up. Didn't know about titers. She still wouldn't let me talk to someone else! At least the vet tech at the other office could answer that one and said yes, theirs are thimerasol free and we could discuss checking titers at that time although it doesn't seem to be the way they recommend doing vaccines. They would ordinarily give them yearly or as recommended.
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post #16 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 02:35 PM
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If I have to pull hen’s teeth for a vet to tell me their vaccine protocol and position on titers, then I am out of there. They should be able to tell you these things in a simple email. Depending on the answers I got and whether I needed additional information, I would go further and make an actual appointment to talk to the vet. One of the number one things I look for in a vet is communication. If they are not communicating now, they are not going to communicate later. Sorry, I have a great vet now but suffered through a few to get here. Just trying to spare others.
I agree with you completely in principle. I do think the question about vaccine policy should be pressed.

However, I also think things are different right now, at least, they are very different where I am. People who were very good about these things 3 months ago are terrible about returning phone calls. Since everyone is having these problems, i think it makes it hard to differentiate between who was unreliable before and who is busy now. I realize veterinary care is different, but just in the last couple of weeks I’ve seen a medical office open with only limited staff, an office that is not accepting new patients, even with referrals, for at least a month, offices that have reduced their doctors by half in order to allow for social distancing, and offices that have extended their hours to spread apart appointments. Having grown up in similar offices, I know that what is going on behind the scenes right now to make these things happen is completely out of the ordinary. I’m sure there are a few really excellent offices handling these issues very well, but I also don’t think an office that has missteps at this time is representative of their usual standard of care.
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post #17 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 03:00 PM
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I heard back from one of the doctors at the one office that I didn't speak to anyone at!!

For the vaccine question, she said "There are 6 total vaccinations that dogs MAY receive. However, these are based on each dog's exposure/environment. Rabies should be given after 12 weeks old, but we don't recommend waiting more than a few weeks after that age, because then they are not protected against the rabies virus. We are happy to divide up vaccines, especially in small dogs. We can run titers for the distemper/parvovirus. However, that vaccine is very unlikely to cause side effects, compared to how sick they can get with either of these viruses. Our website goes into details about the various vaccinations and which dogs would be considered "at risk" for the various illnesses. We can make a notation in your file to split up all vaccinations, as well."

For the spay/neuter question she said "For spay/neutering- for small dogs, we still recommend about 6 months of age for females and between 6-12 months for males."

She also said "I completely understand that it is difficult to bring your new baby to a vet visit, especially when you have to wait outside. We LOVE animals of all kinds, and who wouldn't love a Havanese puppy? The technicians and assistants gently hold the patients and we give treats while we do our examination and give any recommended vaccinations."

So far so good, I guess with the one question of delaying the spay/neuter, which I still don't know if/why I want that, but I gather I need to look into that!
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post #18 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 03:56 PM
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Just one other thought. If you are interested in a holistic vet you can search for one here.

https://www.ahvma.org/find-a-holistic-veterinarian/

They are usually knowledgeable about vaccine dangers and consequences of early spay/neuter. However, you still want to touch base with them on their philosophy to make sure it is line with yours.

Good luck!
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post #19 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 04:12 PM
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I agree with you completely in principle. I do think the question about vaccine policy should be pressed.

However, I also think things are different right now, at least, they are very different where I am. People who were very good about these things 3 months ago are terrible about returning phone calls. Since everyone is having these problems, i think it makes it hard to differentiate between who was unreliable before and who is busy now. I realize veterinary care is different, but just in the last couple of weeks I’ve seen a medical office open with only limited staff, an office that is not accepting new patients, even with referrals, for at least a month, offices that have reduced their doctors by half in order to allow for social distancing, and offices that have extended their hours to spread apart appointments. Having grown up in similar offices, I know that what is going on behind the scenes right now to make these things happen is completely out of the ordinary. I’m sure there are a few really excellent offices handling these issues very well, but I also don’t think an office that has missteps at this time is representative of their usual standard of care.
These are great points. I was mainly referring to getting a vet’s basic philosophy on vaccines which I thought should be simple. You would think they have something already prepared on this to give to people.
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post #20 of 37 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 05:28 PM
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Thanks Mudpuppymama. I emailed a holistic vet a couple of towns away last week and didn't hear back, so I just called and left a message there. She isn't listed in that guide but I have heard good things about her. Maybe that's what I need!! Hopefully, she calls back! I did find a local vet who just specializes in food and diet on that site just now and spoke to her. I asked if she has any recommendations for vets and she was going to text me. Good to know that she is local in case I need help later on. She sounds like a great resource :-) Getting somewhere now!
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