Coming to Pet+E.R.
What to Expect When You Visit
We understand that bringing your pet in for emergency or critical care is scary, stressful and overwhelming. At Pet+E.R., our mission is to provide premier emergency and critical care medicine while reducing stress for our patients and you, their owners. Emergencies are unpredictable, but we strive to adhere to a process that encourages clear, precise communication so you understand the steps we are taking to care for your pet.
Some Helpful Advice
If your pet is experiencing a medical emergency, you can visit Pet+E.R. any time of day or night, 365 days a year. You are not required to call ahead but it is helpful, especially if you are coming directly from your primary veterinarian’s office.
If you’re able, please bring your pet’s medical records with you – this information gives our veterinarians important insight into your pet’s medical history. Download our app and access your pet’s medical records 24/7! Just search VitusVet in iTunes or Google Play.
We also encourage you to pre-register in our system so that we already have your pet’s information on file. The pre-registration process saves you the additional step of having to fill out paperwork immediately upon your arrival.
The staff is super friendly and care about each of the animals that come into their ER. I received several updates from the DR. about my dog’s progress with surgery, and felt that I was really cared for, and that my dog was in good hands!
Meagan L. & Millie
When you arrive at Pet+E.R. in Towson or Columbia, you will check in directly with our Client Services team at the front desk. If you are a new client who was not pre-registered, you will be asked to complete an intake form. If your pet is stable and not experiencing a medical crisis, we will ask you to complete admission paperwork and our triage nurse will call you to take your pet’s vital status prior to being examined by a veterinarian.
Assessment & Paperwork
If your pet is critical, they will be taken back for immediate assessment by a veterinarian. At this time, you will be asked to complete administrative paperwork. We realize that separating you from your pet can be stressful. Our aim is to assess and stabilize your pet as quickly as possible. We ask for your patience while we give immediate necessary medical treatment.
Waiting for the Doctor
Once your pet is triaged by the nurse, they will be seen in order of case severity. Similar to a human emergency room, our patients are triaged as they arrive to Pet+E.R. Our trained nurses are knowledgeable and able to have our critical patients seen by the doctor first. Non-life threatening emergencies may need to wait to allow treatment of a critical case. Therefore, wait times will vary. Even if it appears to be quiet in the lobby, please keep in mind we have a hospital full of sick patients, all of whom are very loved and part of a family. Your pet’s health is important to us and your pet’s comfort and well being is our first priority.
For your comfort, we offer complimentary coffee, tea, hot chocolate and water, along with free wi-fi internet access. Please ask the Client Services team for information on how to connect.
Seeing the Doctor
After your pet is triaged, he or she will be seen and examined by one of our experienced emergency veterinarians. The doctor will ask you to authorize a set of initial diagnostic procedures, which could include x-rays, blood work, blood glucose measurements and more. These initial diagnostics will help our veterinarian determine the cause of your pet’s distress or injury, and are important in developing a treatment plan. Depending upon the results of these tests, the veterinarian will develop a treatment plan and estimate for care. In some cases, the plan requires hospitalization, while other clients may be able to wait at Pet+E.R. and take their pet home the same day. If your pet needs to be hospitalized, we will call with updates once or twice daily. You are always welcome to call us for updates and visit your pet, as long as we can accommodate visitors on the treatment floor. Please call ahead if you would like to arrange a visit.
If your pet requires hospitalization, the doctor will provide you with a treatment plan for emergency services and care. A payment deposit is required. The deposit consists of the entire low end of the estimated treatment amount. For example, if the estimate range is $500 to $1000, you will be asked to leave payment of $500 for your pet to be hospitalized. Updated estimates are created every 12-24 hours, depending on your pet’s case. You are provided a financial update daily to determine whether additional funds are required for treatment.
If your pet is seen as an outpatient and does not require hospitalization, but you need to leave Pet+E.R. to grab a bite to eat or run an errand, we require a deposit in the amount equal to the services authorized on our Initial Diagnostic Authorization form, which is presented to you for your approval during your pet’s triage.
We accept cash, personal check, Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express. We also accept Care Credit. We do not offer or accept payment plans or arrangements.