What to expect on your first visit
When you arrive, you will be greeted by our friendly client services representative. You will not have to fill out any forms, as we will have collected all necessary information over the phone when you made your appointment. Please bring details regarding any medications or supplements you are currently giving your pet. If your pet has insurance, please bring a claim form with you.
After you have checked in, one of our technicians will bring you and your pet into an examination room and ask a few questions about your pet’s history. The doctor will then come in to perform a complete physical examination and an oral examination. The doctor will inform you of the procedure options for your pet’s condition, and give a verbal estimate of the anticipated cost of the recommended procedure(s). You will leave with a report card outlining your pet’s diagnosis, treatment recommendations, information about our anesthetic safety measures, and preoperative instructions.
Consultation appointments typically take 20-30 minutes and cost $145.
“Why does my pet need a consultation first? Why can’t we just come in for the procedure? “
Although your family veterinarian may have examined your pet recently, it is important for Dr. Lommer or Dr. Fulton to evaluate your pet prior to the procedure for a number of reasons:
Most importantly, because general anesthesia is required for all dental procedures, the doctor who will be treating your pet needs to perform a thorough physical examination on your pet prior to the procedure. Rather than taking a “one-size-fits-all” approach to anesthesia, we tailor the anesthetic protocol (including the types and dosages of anesthetic drugs) to each individual patient. It is important for us to get to know your pet’s medical history, current physical condition, and personality in order to select the best anesthetic regimen.
In addition, a dental specialist may identify additional oral problems beyond those identified on a routine physical examination by a family practitioner. By performing the initial examination at a separate visit, we are better able to schedule the appropriate amount of procedure time for each patient.
Please call us at 415-389-5917 Monday through Thursday, 7:30am – 5:00pm, to schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified dental specialists.
Cancellation & rescheduling policy: We require 48 hours’ notice for cancellation or rescheduling. Because we often have a 6-8 week wait for consultation appointments, we offer a waiting list for cancellations. If we receive less than 48 hours’ notice and we are unable to fill the appointment with someone from our waiting list, the cost of the consult will be charged. For this reason, we collect credit card information at the time the appointment is made. This prevents “no-shows” and allows us to serve another pet when someone is unable to come for their scheduled appointment.
Late arrival: Please note that if you are more than 10 minutes late for your consultation appointment, you may have to wait until the following patients’ appointments are completed before seeing the doctor. If you are unable to wait, your appointment will be rescheduled for another day, and the cancellation fee will apply.
Surgical & procedural appointments: These appointments are scheduled by doctor approval only, after we have examined your pet. Procedures are typically scheduled within 2 weeks after a consultation visit. Instructions: Do not feed your pet after midnight the day of the appointment. Water should be withheld from dogs after 6:00am as well. Most oral medications may be given the morning of the appointment, with a small amount of water if necessary; Dr. Lommer or Dr. Fulton will discuss preoperative instructions with you at the time of the consultation.
Although a referral is not required to schedule an appointment, we usually see patients on a referral basis from the patient’s primary care veterinarian, acting as an extension of the family veterinarian’s care. To facilitate examination, your veterinarian may provide information about your pet’s medical history to us by phone, fax (415-532-2257), e-mail, or letter. If anesthesia and treatment are planned, your veterinarian may also run blood tests, take chest x-rays, or perform other tests prior to your appointment with Dr. Lommer or Dr. Fulton.
In order to assist your family veterinarian in maintaining current records and continuing a close relationship with you and your pet, a written report summarizing the diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up recommendations will be faxed to your veterinarian after your pet’s visit. After your pet’s procedure, photographs and radiographs from your pet’s procedure will be visible online at our flickr site.