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Hospital Policies & Information
- What types of animals do you provide care for? We see all types of pets! In addition to cats and dogs, we take care of birds, pocket pets, ferrets, reptiles, amphibians, and other exotics. We do not see wildlife, spiders, venomous pets, or fish. If you have found any wildlife that appears to be injured or abandoned, please contact your local animal control. If you are in Alexandria City, please call Alexandria’s Animal Control. If you are unsure about whether we can provide care for your pet, please give us a call.
- How is the parking near the clinic? If you are familiar with the Old Town Alexandria area, parking is a commodity. We have mostly metered parking, however, there are a few free 2-hour spots. Our hospital is located on the corners of Peyton and Prince Street. If you go 1 block up past Prince Street and away from King Street, you will find free parking. The free spots are usually filled by lunchtime.
- Do you take walk-ins? We highly recommend that you schedule an appointment for your pet. We want to make sure that we give you and your pet the necessary time needed. When someone walks in with an unscheduled appointment, unless there is an emergency, we will see the scheduled appointments first, and try our best to fit the unscheduled appointment in where we can. This extra wait time can cause stress for not only you, but for your pet as well. There may also be an additional charge if our schedule is completely booked, and we have to create an appointment slot for you. So please give us a call to schedule your pet’s appointment, and we will be happy to accommodate you!
- I am running late for my appointment, what should I do? Depending on the time of day, the type of appointment your pet has, and how busy we are, you may have to reschedule the appointment. If it is toward the end of the day, it is completely at the discretion of the veterinarian. Our doctors and staff spend a majority of their day caring for pets in the community, and we want to make sure they can share some quality time with their loved ones at the end of the day. Please give us a call if you are running late or if you think you might be late for your appointment. We may be able to find a later time slot for you or reschedule for the next available appointment.
- Why did the receptionist suggest that I drop my pet off for an appointment instead of giving me a scheduled time to come in with my pet? There are many reasons why we may suggest a drop off instead of a scheduled appointment. We value your time, and if we know that your pet’s visit may require more time than the limited appointment time available, we will recommend that you drop your pet off so that we may perform whatever is necessary and not have to rush. Sometimes we suggest a drop off when we see the day has gotten a bit hectic, and we don’t want to make you wait. In this case, we will not charge a boarding fee. We just want to provide a convenience for you. Sometimes during the appointment, we realize that there may be other diagnostics that need to be performed, so we may suggest that you leave your pet with us for a bit and will call when they are ready to be picked up. If you have questions about our drop off service, please don’t hesitate to give us a call.
- Do you offer grooming or boarding services? We do not provide professional grooming services, however, we are happy to bathe your pet, trim nails, express anal glands, and clean ears. Please be aware that most cats do not like getting baths, so if they are very stressed, we will recommend sedation. When this occurs, we require an exam, which many times cannot be performed until after they are sedated. If we find there is anything else that needs to be addressed, we will contact you. As far as boarding, we do not board cats and dogs. Please give us a call if you have a pet (other than a cat or dog) that you would like to board.
- I want to drop my pet off for surgery or another service. What is the earliest I can bring them? We open at 8am Monday through Friday, so 8am is the earliest time available to drop off. We do have staff here before 8am; however, they come early to take care of any boarded pets and are preparing the practice for the day. We understand that it may be difficult for some of our clients that have to work early and need to be at work by 8am, but we ask that you make arrangements for the day your pet needs to be dropped off. We unfortunately cannot accept drop offs before 8am, mostly for safety reasons. For most pets, (even cats and dogs), we can have you drop them off the night before if your schedule does not allow you to drop them off early in the morning. Give us a call if you have questions about dropping your pet off for a surgical or other procedure.
- What are the doctor’s hours? We have doctor’s staffed Mondays from 10am-7pm, Tuesday-Friday from 10am-5pm, and Saturday from 9am-12pm. Please give us a call if you would like to schedule an appointment or a consult during these times. If you would like to speak with the doctor, please leave a message with the receptionist, and the doctor will get in touch with you as soon as they can. Sometimes doctor’s are not able to get back to clients until the end of the day, but if you have an urgent matter, please let the receptionist know so that can be passed on to the doctor.
- Do you offer discounts or payment plans?At PPEAH we are often asked to provide discounts for our clients. Unfortunately, at this time we are unable to offer discounts or payment plans. Although we would love to provide discounted care for all of our patients, the overhead costs of running a veterinary clinic does not make this possible. In order for us to maintain the quality of care we currently provide, we have to collect fees at the time of service, as a means of keeping our business up and running. We will from time to time offer promotions, so please visit our website periodically for more information. We do, however, feel it is important to help out out in our community. We work closely with the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria to provide care for animals in need. We also provide services for wildlife brought in by animal control. In this way, we can volunteer our services to provide care for the neediest in our community. We understand that the cost of veterinary care can at times be substantial, so we do accept payment via Care Credit, to help with unexpected costs. Also, we recommend pet insurance for all pets. Pet insurance can offer you peace of mind and ensure that your pet can receive the medical care it needs if it experiences an unexpected illness or emergency. For more information about pet insurance and Care Credit, please give us a call.
- Can you give an estimate over the phone for a certain procedure? It is difficult for us to give an estimate over the phone about most procedures, because there is so much variability. For new pets, we first need to have your pet come in for an initial examination and assessment in order to provide a more accurate estimate. For existing pets, we also recommend an examination, especially if they have not been seen by the veterinarian for the particular procedure, or even recently. We can then provide a better estimate for you. We would also like to stress that an estimate is just that, an estimate. We will make every effort to provide an update, but sometimes we don’t know until we are actively performing the procedure, that something has changed. If your pet is new to our practice, please make sure you bring any previous records. This can help us better assess your pet’s needs.
- If I have pet insurance, do I have to pay for services up front or will the insurance company reimburse PPEAH? Also, how long will it take for you to submit my insurance claims? Pet insurance is very different from human insurance. With human insurance, you pay the doctor a co-pay, they submit claim forms, and the insurance company reimburses the doctor’s office directly. With pet insurance, you pay the veterinarian for services rendered, claims are submitted to the insurance company, and they reimburse you the client. As a courtesy to our clients, we will submit insurance claims and any other paperwork requested of us. Please understand that we receive several requests a day. So we ask that you give us at least 5 business days before contacting us about claims that have not yet been submitted. You can help us expedite the process by providing necessary claim forms, and sign if necessary. If you have any questions about pet insurance or claim forms, please give us a call, we are happy to answer your questions.
- Can you provide my apartment complex or homeowner’s association with a letter stating my pet is not a particular breed (example: pitbull)? Unfortunately, for legal reasons, we are unable to provide this type of documentation. However, we can perform a genetic health analysis, also known as a dna test, that will let you know the percentage of all of the breeds that make up your pet. The test we use is 92% accurate, higher than any other test on the market. We receive results in about 3-4 weeks, and from this, your landlord, apartment complex, or hoa, can decide if this information is sufficient.
- My pet just needs vaccines, they do not need an examination. Can I schedule an appointment? We will be more than happy to provide whatever services your pet needs, however, if your pet is new to our practice, we must perform a physical examination, in order to establish a doctor-client-patient relationship. If your pet is a current patient, it is at the discretion of the veterinarian to perform an examination prior to receiving vaccines. For example, if your pet came in last week for runny stool, and the doctor decided to hold off on vaccines until they are feeling better, they may not need to perform another exam when you bring them the following week for a vaccine. If your pet has not been in to see us for a while, we will require an exam prior to vaccines. Please give us a call if you have any questions about this policy.
- What is your payment policy? We require payment when services are rendered. We accept cash, checks (if you are a new client, we ask that you use another form of payment), Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, and Care Credit. All procedures $500 or more, require a 50% deposit, checks will not be accepted for the deposit. This policy is for new clients as well as existing clients. We will only submit completed insurance claims if your account is paid in full. If you have any questions about our payment policy, please give us a call, and we will answer any questions.