If you have URGENT, EMERGENCY or SPECIFIC vet care questions, you must contact your local veterinarian FIRST.
The fastest way to determine whether this is an urgent situation or can wait until tomorrow is to get a vet on the phone, describe what you are seeing, and answer their questions. Even if you think they are closed, google a local one and call anyway. Many will divert their phones to an after-hours service or their own personal mobiles so you can still access immediate vet advice.
Vet clinics can ask you additional relevant questions over the phone, and advise you about whether you must come into the clinic, or if there is something safe you can do at home. Some will have payment plan options, or can refer you to a charity clinic, and it doesn’t hurt to ask! Some will offer home visits, or know someone who does. Even if you think the clinic is closed, you may be surprised, and most clinics will either have an answering machine message telling you who to call, or divert directly to the veterinarian’s mobile phone.
Even if you call a 24 hour clinic in another state, they may have some idea of who is open closer to you, and can offer advice as to whether the problem might be able to wait until morning.
Because guess what? People get into the vet industry because they want to help animals, yours included.
- If you are asking on Anonymous, please allocate yourself an emoji at the start of the ask. It makes it easier to find and sort through you, especially if you send 2 parts, and makes it easier for YOU when the ask is transferred to this blog for answering. You Anons all look the same!
- This is NOT a Pet Care blog. This IS a Vet Care blog. That means I am not going to tell you what to feed your gerbil, but I will tell you how to be nice to your vet.
- If you ask me for specific veterinary advice, you will either get a polite ‘call your vet’ infographic or your ask deleted. If you choose to ignore that advice then the Tumblr community will most probably mock you, and that is on your own head.
- I am not a substitute for seeking mental health treatment from a professional.
- If your question can or should be asked of your own vet, please for the love of Dog do so. Post-surgical care instructions? How to give your medication? Call your own vet, who is already treating your animal, first.
- I cannot adequately do a behavior consultation over Tumblr, and I’m not going to. Please refrain from sending behavioral questions.
- I am in Australia. We have no Rabies, wolves, gerbils, hamsters, chinchillas, skunks, etc.
Q. Is this FAQ and rules page a bit snarky? Isn’t that mean?
A. Don’t break my boundaries and I won’t have to be sarcastic.
Q. I have a gofundme for vet expenses…
A. I gotta give a hard pass on that one. I cannot and will not be going around sharing various gofundme and other crowdsourcing links for vet expenses or anything else. Please understand, once I say yes to one, I have to say yes to all of them or justify why I said no to one, so my rule is I say no to all of them unless I have personally donated.
Q. Can you give me advice to get into a veterinary medicine course?
A. I could only offer general advice about Australian courses, as I have no experience with international systems, and the course I completed has since been revamped. It was over a decade ago that I was applying for vet school, my information may well be out of date, and the USA system is a weird alien place for me. I don’t know or care what freshmen or seniors are (nor have any intention to learn), and when I went through uni I didn’t have a major. You may want advice from someone more recent or in the system.
Q. Can you give me medical advice about my pet?
A. No. Please understand no. Did you not read the rules above? The only answer I can give you is ‘take it to your local vet’. It’s actually illegal and unethical for me to give specific veterinary advice about an animal I have not physically examined, or that lives outside of the state of Australia that I am currently registered in. I can give you advice about whether you should see a specialist or how to find one, or general information about a condition, but I will not discuss specifics of any one medical case that I am not personally involved in.
Q. Have you written a post or breed evaluation on X?
Please, please, use the search function before asking. There is a good chance I already have. Here’s a Masterlist.
Q. Are the vet stories real?
A. The stories and cases are real, some details have been obscured to prevent identification. Good luck figuring out which ones.
Q. Who drew your art/header/avatars?
Definitely not me. Generally speaking any art has been drawn by the person submitting it, unless they have requested anonymity. The header image and avatars are drawn by the lovely c-rowlesdraws
Q. What’s a “question tax”?
A, A question tax is a silly ‘toll’ that I hoped people would do when asking me their many, many questions. It varies from time to time, but are generally non-vet related questions like “What type of Pokemon would I be” or “Came for the X but stayed for the Y”. These things are optional, but they made me feel more like a human and less like an automated answer bot. I’m not overly worried about it anymore, in fact I often forget to answer them now.
Q. Why does it take so long to get an answer to my question?
A. Because there might be more than 100 questions waiting in my inbox, and I only answer around 2 a day. You have about a 15-20% of getting your question answered, but if you didn’t read the FAQ or decided to ignore it, that chance will be zero.
I try very, very hard to get through all these questions, and have a team of lovely mods helping me now, but it’s still impossible for me to answer all questions.
Q. You’ve been really helpful. Can I buy you a coffee?
A. If you’re down in my part of Australia, sure. But otherwise, consider Patreon Support for some extra stuff. Thank you!
Alternatively, if you’d prefer to take things one coffee at a time, you can donate a small amount through Ko-Fi. https://ko-fi.com/drferox
Q. Can I send you a photo of my pet?
Of course you can, but please be patient before it’s posted. Sometimes there’s a bit of a queue, I enjoy seeing other people’s pets, and so do all the other vetlings!
The pet needs to be your own though, or you need permission to post somebody else’s pet, and I’m reluctant to post pictures with the faces of minors in them.I will also not be posting pictures of pets with cropped ears, docked tails or extreme anatomy that compromises welfare which shows these characteristics in a positive light. This is nothing personal against the animals, which I’m sure are lovely, but against the practice
Q. Weren’t you selling cute little badges?
I still am. They’re at this Storenvy shop, and I usually post them once a week.
Q. You have a veterinary youtube channel?
Yes, it’s here, but it’s pretty casual and informal. Also 50% cat videos, so there’s that going for it.
Q. You wrote a novel?
Yes, Fairy Tales Written By Rabbits, which is a reference to The Last Unicorn. It’s a fantasy journey through a post-apocalyptic waste land from the point of view of two rabbits, and not veterinary related at all.