Dr Mary Fondren, veterinarian, with her cat Frankie and Sami her springer spaniel

When you move to Palm Beach Gardens, FL. or Northern Palm Beach County, finding the right veterinarian and animal clinic can be a daunting task. Just looking in the Yellow Pages might not give you all the information you need. So here are some tips to help you find a caring veterinarian with convenient hours that work for you.

The first thing you should do is locate the nearest pet emergency clinic. These are animal hospitals that are open evening and weekends for emergencies, and they can be found in the Yellow Pages under "Veterinary Emergency Services." As long as these hospitals are not owned by a co-op of local veterinarians they can be a good source of unbiased information about the veterinarians in your community. We have an excellent relationship with the local Emergency Clinic, and work together to provide round the clock care for your pet.

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Another way to gather information is through word of mouth. Go to the local dog parks and talk to people with pets whom you meet on walks. Ask the local grooming parlors. People will be glad to tell you what they know. Many of our clients were initially referred to us by the local doggie daycare or groomer.

The final step in selecting a new veterinarian is to visit the animal hospital without your pet. Check out the facility and staff. Find out where the veterinarian went to school, how long he or she has practiced in the area, how many and what type pets he or she has. Is the hospital affiliated with any groups or societies? For instance, Fondren Pet Care is a member of and accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners. Ask for a tour. The hospital should always be clean and pet friendly.

Convenience is also a factor. What are the hospital's hours? We have appointments on Saturdays, and allow our clients to drop their pets off before they go to work and pick up in the evening on their way home. Can they be reached by phone even after hours? We have an emergency phone system allowing you to reach us evenings and weekends.

If you do your homework you, and your pet, are more likely to have a happy and rewarding experience with your chosen veterinarian. Please take a moment to look at what we have to offer. Perhaps if you like what you see on these pages you will call our office to schedule an appointment and see for yourself.

Call 561-627-7688 to make an appointment today, or to learn more visit www.FondrenPetCare.com