Veterinary & Emergency Info
How do I know if I have a pet emergency?
Nobody knows your pet better than you. If you are concerned about how your pet is acting, do not hesitate to bring them in for an evaluation. The peace of mind knowing your pet has been examined by a trained professional is invaluable.
What are your hours of operation?
For emergency care we are operating on a temporary schedule. Please refer to our press and media page for our ER schedule. For referrals (cardiology, internal medicine, rehabilitation, and surgery,) call 570-587-7777 Monday – Friday from 7am – 5pm and a Referral Coordinator can schedule an appointment.
How long will my pet wait to be seen for emergency care?
Just like a human emergency room, wait times fluctuate based on the number of patients and the severity of the conditions. We do our best to serve everyone promptly, however, the most critical patients are seen first. We appreciate your patience and understanding!
Can VREC be my primary care veterinarian?
For dogs and cats: VREC acts as an extension of your primary care veterinarian. We are open for emergencies or for care when your primary care veterinarian’s office is unable to do so. Our services do not include routine veterinary care such as wellness appointments or vaccinations. If you do not have a primary care vet, please contact us and a staff member can provide recommendations in your area.
What animals are seen at VREC?
VREC focuses primarily on canines and felines. We do not have the ability to provide care for large animals or livestock.
If you need an equine veterinarian:
• Abington Equine Hospital at 570-904-8800
Additional exotic animal veterinarians in the area:
• Creature Comforts in Saylorsburg at 570-992-0400
• Back Mountain Veterinary Hospital in Dallas at 570-675-3406
• West Side Veterinary Hospital in Kingston at 570-288-8895
• Friends for Life Veterinary Care in Honesdale at 570-647-4393
• Pocono Peak Veterinary in Stroudsburg at 570-421-0931
• Trucksville Dog & Cat Hospital in Shavertown at 570-696-1146
• St. Francis Animal Clinic in Coal Twp. at 570-644-1006
• Fur and Feathers Veterinary Care in Binghamton (NY) at 607-328-1246
• Macungie Animal Hospital in Macungie at 610-374-6432
• Alpine Animal Hospital in Danville at 570-271-1828
• Ark Animal Hospital in Wyomissing at 610-375-6432
• Wright Veterinary Medical Center in Bethlehem at 610-865-2611 (birds)
Do you offer remote assistance?
Every emergency is unique. A pet needs to be examined by our staff before providing a diagnosis and treatment plan. This means VREC cannot give remote advice, including, but not limited to the following modes of communication: phone, Yelp, Google Maps, Facebook, Facebook Messenger, or Instagram. If you feel the situation is critical, call on your way to the hospital so staff is prepared for your arrival.
Why are emergency services more expensive than my primary care veterinarian?
The cost of keeping a facility operating 24/7 is beyond that of a primary care veterinarian clinic. In addition to being staffed 24-hours per day, VREC houses specialized equipment and diagnostic tools not commonly found at primary care facilities.
We understand emergency care is almost always an unforeseen expense. Our staff will do everything possible to provide care while adhering to financial budgets. Financial concerns can be brought up with client service representatives and/or the veterinarian responsible for the care of your pet.
What forms of payment do you accept?
We accept cash, check (Pennsylvania checks only), Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express and Care Credit®. Care Credit is a third-party credit line used specifically for human and veterinary medical needs. Contact us with questions or visit their website.
Payment polices & payment plans:
Payment in full is required upon discharge. Parents of pets requiring hospitalization are required to put down 50% of the quoted high-end estimate. Upon hospitalization discharge, the remainder of the balance is due. The second half of payment will be adjusted to reflect all in-hospital expenses. This means the remainder may be slightly higher or lower than originally quoted. Our staff will contact a the contact person if there is a major change to the quote.
What happens if my pet is hospitalized?
VREC operates 24 hours a day so your pet will never be alone. Our facility is fully staffed at all hours and pets are constantly monitored. The staff’s workstation (nicknamed “The Bridge”) is located in the center of the treatment floor, allowing a panoramic view. This allows for observation of all hospitalized patients and timely changes in treatment protocols.
If your pet is hospitalized, rest assured! Regular updates will provided for the duration of their stay. If a major change occurs, pet parents are notified immediately.
How do I obtain updates?
To provide efficient patient care and to prevent miscommunication, one individual will be be designated as the contact person at check-in. The contact person will be the one to receive updates. A doctor or technician will regularly reach out to relay regular updates. If there are any changes in a pet’s condition, they will be relayed regardless of the time.
Can I visit my hospitalized pet?
Parents are welcome to schedule a visit by calling to arrange a time. The amount of time in a visitation may vary based on treatment protocols or your pet’s condition. Please notify us if a visitation needs to be re-scheduled.
Note: I-131 therapy patients cannot have visitation access as per state health guidelines. For safety reasons, visitation is not permitted for pets quarantined in isolation units. Thank you for your understanding.
Personal belongings when hospitalized:
Toys and stuffed animals are permitted if adequately labeled. Our staff does their best to ensure items stay with your pet. We are not responsible if item(s) becomes lost during hospitalization and laundering. Rest assured, we have plenty of blankets, towels, and beds for your pet’s comfort.
Parents who provide their pet’s food must clearly label all bags, cans, and containers with the pet’s name and portion size. We cannot accept raw food diets.
What is a discharge?
All patients seen at VREC are provided discharges. These summaries include important information like diagnosis, procedures performed, medication and dosage, follow-up care, recommendations, and more. The discharge process for hospitalized patients takes place during normal business hours (Monday through Friday from 9am-5pm.) Alert us if a discharge outside these times is necessary.
Who has access to my pet’s medical records?
VREC sends all medical notes, consultation findings, diagnostic test results, discharge notes, and any other pertinent information to your pet’s primary care veterinarian. This is to ensure your pet’s medical records are complete. You or your primary care veterinarian are welcome to call with any questions or concerns.
What is a referral clinician?
Both your primary care veterinarian and a referral clinician have earned their Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM or VMD) degree. This typically requires four years of undergraduate training and four years of veterinary school. A referral clinician completes an additional internship and an extra years of residency training in their respective field.
Does my pet need a referral?
We do not require referrals for surgery, internal medicine, exotic medicine, or cardiology. To schedule a consultation with these departments, call 570-587-7777 from Monday through Friday 8am-5pm and ask for a Referral Coordinator. Pet parents seeking rehabilitation services must obtain a referral from their primary care veterinarian before an evaluation is scheduled. Pets admitted through the emergency/critical care service who require care in a referral department will be internally transferred.
What to expect at a referral appointment:
At a referral consultation pet parents fill out general information forms and provide contact info. Once in an exam room, a technician will obtain a brief history and record your pet’s vital signs. The referral clinician will review the prior diagnostics, perform a physical exam, and explain diagnostic and treatment options available. We require owner consent before performing any diagnostic tests or treatments.
Initial consultations run between one and two hours. Recheck appointments are approximately 30 minutes. Read more about appointments here. Please provide at least a 24-hour notice for cancellations or you may be charged.
What is the Angel Fund?
VREC’s Angel Fund was developed shortly after opening in 2010 as a way to provide assistance when financial burdens prevented pet parents from obtaining veterinary care. If a pet and parent qualify for the Angel Fund, doctors donate 100% of their abilities and the facility donates any/all hospitalization and procedural fees. Charges to the Angel Fund are associated with supplies and medications to aid in recovery. Since inception the Fund has provided essential (and oftentimes life-saving) care for over 175 animals. For more information or if you wish to make a donation, please click here.
Those who require a translator are asked to notify us at your earliest convenience so that we may work to accommodate you. We ask for at least one week’s notice for any sign language translators.
I found a stray animal! What do I do?
If a stray animal appears to be sick and/or injured, bring it to our facility. Our staff will take necessary steps to provide care. VREC does not have adequate space to take in healthy strays. If a stray cat or dog appears to be healthy, please contact a local shelter or police in the area where the animal was found. VREC can provide animal rescues and shelters that may be able to assist.
I found injured wildlife! What do I do?
If injured wildlife is spotted, handle it as little as possible. Should the animal need to be moved to a safer location, wear protective clothing and gloves when handling. Some wildlife may be seen by our Exotic Medicine Clinician, Dr. Breaux. Please call ahead to help us determine if we can see the animal. Click here to see wildlife rehabbers across the state of PA.
What pet-friendly accommodations are nearby?
We have compiled a list of pet-friendly hotels and local restaurants here.