i took one of my dogs here for a general checkup and also cause he had been slightly limping for a few weeks. we were shopping around for a new vet and had heard good things about the naturopathic approach this clinic has to health care for animals. they got me in quickly when someone cancelled, which was great, and the person i spoke to on the phone was very nice and helpful.
i arrived on time for our visit, and had the new client info printed out and filled out ahead of time. we sat there for nearly 10 minutes with barely a nod from the busy staff behind the desk.
my pup and i were taken to the room in the next building, which was disorienting since no one told us where we were going except out the front door. we saw dr lisa brienen who was very pleasant at first. i explained the problem and after getting down on the floor with us, she immediately started feeling around for injury to his shoulder and leg. he got a bit growly and she got super anxious. she tried again and then said something like, 'this isn't going to work' and left the room in a huff without telling me where she was going. she came back with a muzzle and told me she needed to put this on cause (and i paraphrase) 'i am sure he's never bitten anyone, but i can't do my job this way' she didn't even ask me if i thought it was okay or if i had any other ideas. i asked her if other dogs ever did this and she said no, emphatically, making me feel as if my dog was terrible and a risk to society. my dog is not aggressive and has never hurt anyone, although he is nervous around new people since he was rescued in a not so great situation. i was shocked as was my dog, i think. she proceeded to try to muzzle him as i held him down and i felt horrible and shocked and like a horrible pet owner. finally she felt what she needed and we released him. then she talked to me a few minutes about what to do and then left for at least 5-10 min to fill the prescription for arnica.
at the end of the visit she said to me and my dog, (paraphrase again) gosh, i didn't even give you a treat or spend time with you before i did that. that probably would have helped it go smoother. duh! i think she was seeing that indeed he was a very friendly and calm dog and that she had overreacted. i wish she would have had better therapeutic skills that could have saved us from the trauma.
at the end of visit she told me, since the visit lasted 30 minutes (at least 15 min of that i was waiting to see someone or for her to come back), that she would only bill me for 15 minutes today. i think this was linked to feeling like she had overreacted. i did not know how long the visit was supposed to be, but was expecting a 30 min visit since when i spoke to the woman who scheduled me i told her i had 30 min available.
when i got to the front desk to check out, the receptionists gave me the bill and had charged me for 30 minutes. this is not a cheap clinic either! it was over a hundred dollars. i told them that the doc had said 15 min but they pushed back at me and said that my visit had been for 30 minutes. no communication between the doc and front desk. they made me feel like i was being unreasonable and pushy, and didn't believe me. it was really terrible! and no doctor in sight to back me up. i refused to pay for 15 minutes and they gave me a firm talking to as if i was a child. 'well, just so you know, our services are this much, and i will let it go just this once, but...'
i still get angry thinking about the whole day and will never go back there. yuck!
Pros: not sure anything
Cons: bad communication skills, front desk people rude