Why Unusual Pets Need Exotic Animal Vets

Finding an Exotics Veterinarian

So how do you find an exotics vet if you need one? The American Board of Veterinary Practitioners and the American College of Zoological Medicine — the organizations that certify veterinary specialists in exotic pet fields — list specialists on their websites geographically. Exotic pet owners can check these sites to see if there is a board-certified veterinarian in their area.

In addition, the Association of Avian Veterinarians, the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians, the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians and the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians provide continuing education to general veterinarians interested in learning more about a certain species. Pet owners can also search these sites to find veterinarians near them with exotic pet knowledge.

Exotics Need Expert Care

That night 20 years ago when I was confronted with the ill and injured little monkey remains one of the scariest moments in my career. I did the best I knew how to do. I X-rayed the cat and saw the monkey’s tiny hand passing uneventfully through his colon. It wasn’t bothering the cat, and it was too late to return it to the monkey, so I bandaged the monkey’s damaged arm and admitted him to the hospital. Although today I neither treat monkeys nor recommend them as pets, that night made me acutely aware of the fact that in order to be a great exotic pet veterinarian, specialized training is key.

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