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Kerry78

Why aren't there more Avian Vets about?

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Hi All,

 

I asked my other half to findout if the vet he took his Moms Cat to treated Birds, the response was they weren't specialists in that sort of thing but they would look at bird(s)

 

which made me wonder!

 

after a long search online ive only found 2/3 Avian Vets and there located so far from me I cannot drive and itmakes me wonder what if something happened severly in the future?

 

I really think more local vets should be qualified to treat birds,

alot of folk own birds and with my local petshop selling dozens of parrots there should be a local Avian in my area :(

 

I now have to bite my tongue and hestitate to ask myself do i visit the vet down the road or what?

 

there should be some sort of Plea for more local Avians

in our areas don't you think so? ;)

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I totally agree with you. Trouble is when a small bird gets sick many owners feel that:

A, it isn't worth the vet fees :( but true and

B, Many people just don't realise the need for a specialist avian vet and assume all vets cover all animals.

In the past I'm afraid I was guilty of B but through forums such as this one I've come to realise the importance of avian vets - others don't.

 

In short then, if there was a huge demand for avian vets I believe they would be cropping up all over the place. It's a sad fact of life that not everyone looks upon their birds as the valuable family members they are. I'll never understand why people fork out hundreds of pounds for a beautiful bird only for it to sit in a cage all day and be fed a seed only diet :(

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Think you lot are doing OK compared to here, we have only two qualified Avian vets, plus two or three who have a special interest in birds in our entire state, which is easily able to fit thw whole of the UK in its boundaries. There are a few more in the others states but not a lot...

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Its ridiculous though that local vets aren't properly qualified to treat birds but they are to treat cats and dogs, vets should have quals to treat all domesticated animals regardless what they are.

 

it so annoys me and it worrys me because what do I now do if something tragic happens in the future? you know Solihull is so far from me I cannot drive and I bet the taxi cab would cost £50 to get over there!

 

Im just so lucky in theory that I have knowledge of treating

minor injurys on my birds atm,

but broken bones no I just wish there was a specialist vet for my birds to go to nearby, im not to miffed about taking them down the road to my local hence they kill my birds not knowing about them :cry:

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You are not far from me Kerry, and my closest is Roy Earle in Solihull - 25 miles each way - Which is fine normally but does worry me in an emergency. There is another one about the same distance in Redditch, but again - no help in an emergency. Which as I said before a few weeks back I had an emergency and it was a nightmare, let alone for people who cant drive - I was looking at an 100 mile journey to my closest emergency vet!!!! I cant stress enough to stay away from vets that dont treat birds - It can be fatal for your pet! Trust me we are seeing more of it nowadays. :( Normal vets tend to think along the lines of - Well it's a little bird and we cant do much - But avian vets are much better. The problem is getting there in the first place for a lot of people. :(

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I really just hope I don't have anything serious with my birds in future,

the other day i though Missy had broke her toe it looked odd the way she was using it,

I think she is just double jointed or something cos she's been running about like a rabbit all week!

 

Birds do very nicely to fool us when it comes to injurys though but non of it fools me,

the slightest cut on the foot and there of in the kitchen gettting it sorted lol!

 

I just can't understand why local vets are un-qualified to treat Birds,

my fella even said with the amount of birds people own there should be vets in every direction that could treat them!

 

why do they favour cats and dogs more beats me :(

 

I think theres a few Avians in Worcestor, Worcestors a hour drive away

and i think my fella would drive me if needed, not good for my poor birds though to be driven in

a car for such a long time if there in deaths door :(

 

I think there should be some sort of petition for this to get local vets qualified in treating birds, it's just not on!!!!

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I just can't understand why local vets are un-qualified to treat Birds,

 

They are qualified Kerry, otherwise they couldn't be a vet :wink: What they haven't done is the extra training.

 

I was speaking about this to my vet, well not mine the girls vet :lol: He agrees, one of the things that puts some off is the fact to train costs them extra money and after years at vet school they have loans so high they have to get a job and get them paid off.

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lol instead of them moaning about training costs & fee's and how long it takes to qualify for that extra mile

they should have the training anyway, what good is a local vet when there gonna tell you sorry madame

we don't specialist in birds here but we can recommend a vet thats the other side of B'ham lol it's pathetic in theory!

 

a Qualified Avian should be local to many towns and areas,

Rant over ((oh it's aggrivates me this)) lol sorry peeps im quite annoyed :D

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lol instead of them moaning about training costs & fee's and how long it takes to qualify for that extra mile

 

I'll tell this to my freind who's training now - shall I ask her how many thousands her loan is? :?

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How can you expect a vet to know everything about every kind of animal? Yes a normal general practitioner vet can do basic first aid but they can't be expected to have specialist knowledge of all disciplines in all species. Birds are not feathered cats they have entirely different anatomy, physiology, pharmacology and very different pathologies and cat and dog vets can't just extrapolate their knowledge of mammals, they have to study birds intensively to gain in depth knowledge. This is not financially viable for the vast majority of vets especially when there will be little to no return on their spending.

I am currently doing a 4yr training period (after 5yrs at university and then time spent in general and exotics practice) and will be an avian specialist after this but how can you expect all vets to sacrifice their income (I am on far less than minimum wage) and time (>100hrs this week not including time on call) if they will only see a pet bird every couple of months and don't have a strong interest in avian work. I freely admit I would be stuck if asked to do anything other than basic veterinary care of cattle or pigs as the human brain just cannot store the amount of information needed to know everything about everything. I think you have to be realistic and find a local vet who has an interest to deal with the more routine work (nail/beak trims, health checks, faecal checks etc) and be prepared to travel to a specialist if there is a more complicated problem. Certainly this should be a consideration before purchasing a bird.

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It's a good point and certainly should be a consideration. What worries me a lot more at the moment is the vets who will treat a parrot without really knowing what they are treating. I know not all vets are like this, but it is becoming clear that many vets offer a general anti biotic for most problems, and this costs valuable time for many birds. I just wish that if they didnt know, they would say - And then refer to an avian vet. I know my normal vet does, I needed one in an emergency, and they said straight off that they didnt even want to see him, that I needed an avian vet. This could save a lot more lives imo. Sorry seem to have gone off topic.

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Its bad enough having to take your birds out of there homes to go for a Vet check though,

I know for sure one of my birds would freak out if I grabbed him and took him away from his

2 pals in false pretence that a vet not far couldn't treat him properly!

 

all im asking is for a local vet in emergency nearby in theory,

that would have a adequate knowledge atleast to look at my birds!

 

after finding out that the vet down the road is advising me to seek a specialist im not happy on this!

when people buy any kind of animal and it seeks medical care it should be able to get that from

a vet locally not miles or towns away thats what im getting at!

 

as for Vets in training and exspenses, I think in longterm the debt will hit hard but is worth it,

he/she will gain a wider vocabulary of animals then you will get more work available to you thus pay

those Grands of :)

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Its bad enough having to take your birds out of there homes to go for a Vet check though,

I know for sure one of my birds would freak out if I grabbed him and took him away from his

2 pals in false pretence that a vet not far couldn't treat him properly!

 

all im asking is for a local vet in emergency nearby in theory,

that would have a adequate knowledge atleast to look at my birds!

 

after finding out that the vet down the road is advising me to seek a specialist im not happy on this!

when people buy any kind of animal and it seeks medical care it should be able to get that from

a vet locally not miles or towns away thats what im getting at!

 

as for Vets in training and exspenses, I think in longterm the debt will hit hard but is worth it,

he/she will gain a wider vocabulary of animals then you will get more work available to you thus pay

those Grands of :)

Why should a vet take on thousands of pounds of debt for no real benefit to themselves? Yes they may gain the satisfaction of being able to treat a wider range of animals but what good is that if they can't pay their mortgage? We are the lowest paid professionals and work ridiculous hours for minimum wage but still get criticism on a daily basis! You are very naive to think that every pound spent on learning is recouped in increased revenue! And if GP vets could treat most birds then no specialists would exist as they couldn't survive and care would be mediocre at best.

you are lucky that your vet is honest - many will see birds and have no idea what is going on - it is better to be honest and advise you seek the right standard of care.

You have responsibility for providing care for the bird you have bought, you cannot demand that people around you meet your requirements when you want. Look for a local vet who is capable of dealing with birds and be grateful if you can find one. This is not a domesticated mammal, it is a very different animal that needs care from someone who understands their medical conditions.

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Marie I see your point but look at it this way...having been here you can see how much demand there is for avian vets, speaking purely financially this means there is a huge marketout there screaming out for your services (vets I mean). A well organised vet who advertised and networked with the local vets could make a bundle plus assist so many birds and people. Surely that would quickly recoup the money spent. As for stupid hours for little pay....vets aren't orphans..there's plenty other people out there working hard for their money.

Hey do us a favour..when you qualify..let us all know and also where to find you...there's loads waiting for you out here.

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I work in the busiest avian practice in the UK and can confirm that even here there are not enough avian cases to support our department financially so cannot see how having more avian vets could really be viable. They would not see enough cases to ensure familiarity, competency and financial security and could not justifiably devote as much time to it as they would need.

i appreciate that other people work equally hard but it is often thought that vets are incredibly well paid so just wanted to make it clear that that is a fallacy!

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Marie I see your point but look at it this way...having been here you can see how much demand there is for avian vets, speaking purely financially this means there is a huge marketout there screaming out for your services (vets I mean). A well organised vet who advertised and networked with the local vets could make a bundle plus assist so many birds and people. Surely that would quickly recoup the money spent. As for stupid hours for little pay....vets aren't orphans..there's plenty other people out there working hard for their money.

Hey do us a favour..when you qualify..let us all know and also where to find you...there's loads waiting for you out here.

How would Marie know by coming on here the demand for avian vets, at last count I think that seven people had posted on this topic. In real terms there is not such a great demand for avian vets or other specialist exotics.

With respect Hotfoot, geographically you probably dont understand the need for avian vets in this country. I would be willing to bet that the majority are within an hours drive of a good avian vet when needed, not like your situation of three vets in a similar area to the whole uk.

 

after finding out that the vet down the road is advising me to seek a specialist im not happy on this!

when people buy any kind of animal and it seeks medical care it should be able to get that from

a vet locally not miles or towns away thats what im getting at!

Wouldnt your GP do exactly the same if he thought he couldnt deal with your problems, but you would accept his advice of being referred to a specialist, or perhaps you think that all GPs should be able to treat everything to specialist standard.

As LAM so rightly said, the onus should be on the person to adequately research where their nearest vet is before the event.

It is impossible for all vets to be able to treat all animals accurately, the depth of knowledge would be vast. A parrot is not a domesticated animal like a cat or dog, which most vet clinics will see hundreds a week. Unfortunately if we choose to keep exotics we should be prepared for the inconveniences.

 

vets who will treat a parrot without really knowing what they are treating. I know not all vets are like this, but it is becoming clear that many vets offer a general anti biotic for most problems, and this costs valuable time for many birds.

Standard practice for even avian vets until they get test results back I think you will find.

 

As for stupid hours for little pay....vets aren't orphans..there's plenty other people out there working hard for their money.

I have to say, that seems a little harsh towards someone who has given up there time in the past to come on here, as Marie has, to help birds and give medical advice :shock:

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This is typical of some people that post on this site, making rather rude comments. I would think that all veterinary practices know very well what the potential of bird owning clients are and a bit of respect would go a long way here when someone posts an explanation to the question asked.

 

In my opinion vets are more knowledgeable than G.P's. They have to deal with patients that can not tell of any symptoms. Medication that can be given to one sort of animal but not another and know their way around the many different types of animals.

 

I'm extremely lucky, I have an avian vet 15 minutes walk away and another about 20 mins drive.

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Paulie thank you for your opinion, yes I'm at a disadvantage geographically, but I work in health care industry and have for over 30 years, and health and buisness is pretty much the same everywhere...demand and supply. I was not having a go at Marie..its not my style, rather pointing out where I felt she had erred. If Marie is studying vet science/avian vet then part of the training will be in dealing with the public/industry, that's why even student medicos are affiliated with their profesional organisations, for support and guidance. They will have some idea of the market, or should. Seven people posted but how often have people lamented not having an avian vet available in troubled times. If Marie comes here and helps she must be at least a little aware of the despair felt when vet can't be accesed.

I have heaps of respect for vets...after all isn't this what this thread was about...we need them.

I wonder if Marie was insulted why Paulie posted not Marie? Obviously she wasn't. But now perhaps she does know how needed she will be in the future. I'm not looking for an argument, so I shall not post on this topic again...

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I really do not understand where the problem is in accessing an avian vet, as already stated the majority of people are within reachable distance of one when needed. I have three within an hours drive and count myself lucky.

I think to expect every vet practice to specialise in all animals is quite ridiculous.

Supply and demand is right, and I can understand it from the medical side. I have three dogs and seven birds in the house and can say that over the last few years my vets have made more money from the dogs than the birds. Visit any veterinary clinic and count the number of domestic pets compared to exotics !

 

To answer your question Hotfoot, I posted on the comments made about Marie as I thought she was being given a hard ride and didnt agree with the comments that had been made. Whether she felt insulted, I have no idea :roll:

I have to say you have a strange way of not looking for an argument :wink:

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Fair point Pauline, but my point is a normal vet then releases care of said bird and expects it to be cured. An avian vet may give antibiotics, but then does follow up tests to find out exactly what the problem is. No-one says vets are infallible, they are as liable to make mistakes as they rest of us, but I do think if the vet doesn't know about birds they should refer you straight away to an avian one - I know of a couple of places round here that will do that, but the majority dont. They dont realise that by doing this, and giving the treatment which may well not work is costing the bird time it may not have. But I do also take on the point that the owner themselves should be looking into these things too x

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My view -

A person decides to own a parrot.

It is then the owners responsibility to get the parrot to an avian vet when needed whatever that may entail.

Be it 20 mins or 3 hours.

The vets are out there. It's our duty of care to get our birds to them.

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The vets are out there. It's our duty of care to get our birds to them.

I agree, we are too quick to blame others, (vets) than accept what is our own responsibility.

 

Mindy, again it is our responsibility to follow up with our birds healthcare, just like we would if we didnt think a GP had done enough.

We choose the vet in the majority of cases, and if that said vet has not got the knowledge to deal with the problem then, as LAM said it is our duty of care to make the effort to find a specialist.

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