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Services

Our services and facilities provide complete care for all small animals

What can we do for you?

  • 15 minute appointments with our vets and nurses
  • Vaccinations, parasite control and weight management
  • Neutering
  • Microchipping
  • Dental procedures, including digital dental x-rays
  • Separate sterile and non-sterile surgical theatres
  • Advanced anaesthetic monitoring equipment available
  • Excellent nursing care
  • Keyhole surgery for minimally invasive procedures
  • Separate cat and dog waiting room and wards
  • Pet passports
  • 24/7 emergency treatment by our own vets
  • Imaging including digital x-ray, the latest ultrasound equipment and endoscopy equipment
  • Full in-house Idexx laboratory for rapid blood, urine and skin test results
  • Dentistry
  • District Nursing
  • Acupuncture
  • Chemotherapy
  • Diagnostics
  • Drumnadrochit Clinic
  • Endoscopy
  • Keyhole Surgery
  • Pet Passports
  • Ultrasound
  • Weight Management

Dentistry

Dental disease is the most common condition in adult dogs and cats. We pride ourselves on taking a pro-active approach to dental health in our patients because we are aware of the major contribution it makes to their wellbeing - far, far beyond just fresh breath and pearly whites.

Bacteria in the mouth produce dental plaque which accumulates above and below the gumline, causing disease and pain in the mouth from swollen gums and loosening of teeth, and also release toxins into the bloodstream which can damage major organs.

At Crown Vets we have a dedicated dental suite where dental health is assessed and treated using the latest equipment. We use modern and safe anaesthetics tailored to your pet's procedure which is constantly monitored by a registered veterinary nurse to make their recovery as comfortable and rapid as possible.

  • Complete oral exam and dental charting allows you to visualise treatment undertaken and our recommendations
  • A dedicated dental x-ray machine to let us examine inside teeth and underneath the gums
  • Surgical extraction of multi-rooted using the latest dental equipment and techniques
  • Ultrasonic scaling above and below the gumline to remove tartar and plaque
  •  Inclusive 3 and 10 day post-procedure checkups to monitor progress and to give advice on homecare

We also have specialist equipment for rabbit, guinea pig and rodent dentistry.

District Nursing

District nursing allows nursing care to be carried out in your home to decrease stressful vet visits and to provide care to those who struggle to get their pets to the veterinary practice. 

District Nursing involves two of our qualified, registered veterinary nurses attending a visit to your pet in your own home to carry out a multitude of tasks including nail clips, microchips, suture removal, behavioural consultations and ear cleaning to name a few. 

There will be a minimum charge of a nurse consultation fee which is £19.81.

Visits are restricted to the Inverness area between 2:00pm - 4:00pm. Please get in touch to book an appointment.

Acupuncture

What is acupuncture and how does it work?

Acupuncture is the practise of inserting fine, solid needles into the body for pain relief or, in some cases, to help the body deal with other diseases. It works through the nervous system. The needles block the pain messages and encourage the brain and central nervous system to produce more of the body’s natural painkillers. In conditions that are not painful, acupuncture may help to reset the body’s normal functioning.

Will it hurt my pet?

Acupuncture needles stimulate nerves that do not cause the unpleasant feelings of pain that we are trying to treat. They stimulate other nerves that send a more important message to the brain, which is how they block pain. Sometimes animals may react to this sensation as though they are expecting pain, but then relax because it does not occur. Most of the time they accept the fine needles very well and often become relaxed and sleepy during the treatment. Often, they appear to look forward to the next treatment when they come back to the practice.

How often would my pet be treated?

The usual course is once a week for four to six weeks. After four weeks we will know whether acupuncture is working for your pet and then, depending on the condition and how they have responded, we will work out a plan that usually involves tailing off the treatment so that the effect is maintained for as long as possible.

Is acupuncture safe?

Acupuncture is very safe, in the right hands. Legally it must be performed by a veterinary surgeon. There have been no official reports of problems in animals, but there are some in humans and these can usually be avoided with care and a good knowledge of anatomy. There are a very few cases in which we would have to be very cautious about using acupuncture, but your veterinary acupuncturist can advise you of these.

What kinds of conditions are treated with acupuncture?

Pain is the most common indication for acupuncture. Usually this means pain associated with arthritis, but also muscle strains, pain secondary to disc disease and bony changes of the spine. Other kinds of pain may also respond. Functional conditions such as constipation in cats and  irritable bowel type problems in dogs may also respond.

What can I expect during treatment?

After examination, needles will be put into various parts of the body and moved or stimulated a few times. There is not a set “dose” of acupuncture as there is for medication, so your vet will judge how much to do based on your pet’s response both at the time and after the treatment. They may become sleepy and relaxed during the treatment.

And after the treatment?

It is not uncommon for pets to go home and sleep very soundly for a long time. This is a good sign and shows that your pet will probably respond well to acupuncture. But do not worry if they are not sleepy – this does not mean that they will not respond. Sometimes your pet may seem a little more euphoric than usual; this is also a good sign, but keep them quiet for the rest of the day or they may overdo things. Otherwise treat your pet normally after acupuncture. Do not change exercise, diet or medication unless it has been discussed with your vet.

What about response?

Your pet may show one of three responses to treatment:

  1. They may seem a little stiffer or more uncomfortable. This just means that the dose was a bit too much, but also shows that they should respond to treatment. After a day or two they will improve again and should be better than before. However, you must tell your vet so that they can adjust the treatment next time.
  2. You may see no response. This is always disappointing but does not mean your pet will not respond; it may just be that they will take a little longer or that their improvement after the first treatment was too brief or small for you to see. We cannot say that they will not respond until after the fourth treatment. Not all animals or humans are acupuncture “responders”, but about 80% will be.
  3. You may see an improvement. This may occur anytime in the three days after treatment. The signs that we are trying to treat may then return before the next treatment, but this is fine. After each subsequent treatment the effects should last for longer, so that your pet may eventually not need more treatments for some time.

Chemotherapy

Here at Crown Vets we are able to offer administration of chemotherapy to our patients. Chemotherapy is an effective treatment for certain types of cancer, but must be used with care and according to special protocols.

Dr Melanie Veal, who has an interest in cancer management, is able to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the options for each patient. The types of cancer are individual to each patient and have their own special treatment protocols.

The aim of our chemotherapy service is to ensure each pet maintains the best quality of life during treatment. In many cases medical treatment can have a very positive outcome on our patient’s happiness.

We have listed some general considerations for you.

Chemotherapy has been recommended to me as an option but I’m worried about side-effects?

Chemotherapy in our animal patients is not used as a cure, but rather as a way to make them feel happy and well for as long as possible. It is important that we have as few side effects as possible to allow this. However, some patients may still suffer side effects. The most frequent of these are vomiting, diarrhoea, and being more likely to pick up infections.

If your pet becomes ill after administration of chemotherapy, contact your Veterinary Surgeon who can then treat these side effects and perhaps adapt the protocol.

How do I make sure everyone is safe at home while my pet is receiving chemotherapy?

Chemotherapy medications are removed from the body over the first 48hrs in bodily fluids (urine, vomit, blood, faeces). There are steps that you should take to reduce exposure of yourself, family and other pets.

Young, pregnant, and old people, and anyone who might be immunocompromised are particularly susceptible to the effects and therefore should not be involved in the care-giving of any patient on chemotherapy.

Disposable gloves should be worn to clear up any vomit or faeces and where the patient urinates should be rinsed down with water. Any soiled sheets/towels/beds etc should be washed straight away in a separate load or placed in a plastic bag until they can be washed. If your pet licks you then you should wash as soon as possible. Throwaway items should be placed into two plastic bags before putting into the bin.

What considerations are there with costs of chemotherapy?

Chemotherapy drugs are usually expensive and have to be prepared and administered with special safety procedures and systems.  The whole process takes up a large amount of time. Additional costs can include blood tests and adjunctive therapies whilst the patient is undergoing treatment. Accurate estimates will depend on the size of the patient and what protocols they require.

For further information on cancer or chemotherapy in animals, please contact us.

Diagnostics

Veterinary knowledge constantly advances and you will be pleased to know that we constantly keep up-to-date with the latest developements. Diagnostic testing constantly evolves too and more conditions can be screened for, allowing us to achieve better treatment outcomes.
 
We have an in-house Idexx laboratory suite with the latest equipment that allows us to analyse samples so we can treat, monitor and make recommendations more quickly. We can check the blood system (haematology), the major organs (biochemistry), metabolic status (blood gas and electrolytes) and various hormone levels. We can also run advanced urine testing.
 
Our own services are complemented by Idexx's leading veterinary diagnostic laboratory to open up a complete range of testing to us. A courier comes each day to safely transfer samples to allow for the quickest turnaround.
 
Idexx is an innovative company which has recently launched a secure smartphone app that notifies your vet of their lab results, 24/7, wherever they are!
 
We are backed up by their team of pathologists and internal medicine consultants, who we can discuss complicated cases with, allowing your pet to benefit from their world-class expertise.
 
As our patients age, we can offer wellness screening, which lets us check for hidden health issues and also set a baseline for that individual patient. Baseline values make it easier to interpret test results if your pet becomes unwell. Continued monitoring of long-term diseases facilitates earlier interventions and adjustment to dosages, and lets us better manage a condition.

Drumnadrochit Clinic

We are delighted to be able to offer a veterinary clinic within the Glenurquhart Public Hall. You will see the same friendly faces in a more convenient location for you and your pet without any visit fees.

Our team will have full access to your pets clinical history and all of our facilities in Inverness for a seamless care experience. The clinic will be held between 12:30pm - 4:00pm on the last Tuesday of each month on an appointment only basis for routine appointments such as vaccinations, health checks, vet consultations, microchipping, parasite control and blood testing.

Please get in touch to book an appointment for our next visit!

Endoscopy

Endoscopy is a diagnostic procedure used at our practice to enable us to investigate disease in a number of different body systems. The endoscopes are long flexible tubes which contain bundles of delicate fibre optics. They allow us to create an image of the inside of a body space without the need for surgery. 

The main body systems we use endoscopy to investigate are the gastrointestinal tract (stomach, small intestine and colon) and the respiratory tract (nasal passages, trachea and lungs). 

As well as allowing us to visualise inside these systems, we are also able to take small samples of fluid and tissue to send away for laboratory evaluation. This helps us to make a more specific diagnosis and offer your pet the most appropriate treatment. 

In some circumstances, the endoscopes can also be used in an emergency scenario for example in the retrieval of a foreign body such as a sock lodged in the stomach or a grass awn in the respiratory tract. 
Usually, endoscopy will require a general anaesthetic and may require some patient preparation, for example a period of starvation. The majority of our endoscopy patients however are in for the day and back home evening. 

Endoscopy compliments our other imaging techniques such as ultrasound and radiology and therefore allows us to diagnose many conditions with minimal invasion. 

Keyhole Surgery

Crown Vets are very pleased to be able to offer this advanced technology in animals.

Keyhole surgery uses cleverly engineered cameras and instruments to preform operations through tiny incisions and can replace more traditional operations, which require larger wounds.

Keyhole surgery is less painful, produces a quicker recovery with fewer stitches and is generally safer.

The most common use for keyhole surgery is neutering of female dogs, commonly called a "bitch spay" but we can also use the equipment to do other operations in the abdomen, chest and even inside the joints.

Keyhole Bitch Spay

Traditional spays involve an incision through which the uterus and ovaries are removed. This procedure is known as a ovariohysterectomy and requires a large incision to safely identify and visualise all the important structures.

Using the keyhole technique allows all the structures to be visualised through two 5mm incisions, which are so small they very often don't need skin sutures! In this operation only the ovaries are removed (ovariectomy) but both operations have exactly the same benefits.

Arthoscopy

Arthoscopy is the term we use for keyhole surgery in joints. Dogs and cats are very prone to conditions within joints that require surgical correction. Some of these operations can be done with an 'open' approach but there is a keyhole alternative for most. Common conditions which your vet might diagnose include elbow dysplasia, shoulder problems and hip problems. Keyhole surgery can also be used to help correct knee joint conditions including cruciate ligament damage allowing a quicker recovery.

Laparoscopy

This is the general term for keyhole surgery in the abdomen. In addition to our bitch spays we can also inspect all the abdominal organs for damage and disease and take biopsies where necessary. Commonly we might take biopsies of the liver, kidneys and pancreas. The techniques can also be used to prevent against gastric torsions in susceptible breeds with a simple and low risk procedure.

Thoracoscopy

Keyhole surgery within the chest is known as thoracoscopy. This is a very advanced technique but does allow for the correction of some major defects without the need for open chest surgery.

Pet Passports

Taking your pet abroad has become much easier since new Pet Travel Scheme rules came into force on 1st January 2012. At Crown Vets we have several OV`s (official Veterinarians) who are qualified to complete your rabies vaccination and Pet Passport.

They will also be able to advise you on travel using the Pet Passport and also where to get advice should you be looking to take your pet further afield. Please advise reception when making your appointment to make sure it is booked with an appropriate vet.

Ultrasound

Ultrasound is an advanced diagnostic test that we are delighted to be able to offer at Crown Vets. Our specially designed machine generates gentle waves of energy, which are directed using a probe that makes light contact with the skin. These waves are processed and displayed on a computer-like monitor and gives fantastically detailed images of the organs and structures within the body.

Ultrasound is beneficial for cats, dogs and even more exotic animals, such as snakes!

  • Pain free
  • Safe
  • Often requires no sedation or anaesthesia
  • Accurate
  • Provides information which would be impossible with any other technique

Ultrasound can be used to examine the size, shape and composition of any number of the organs within the body. This allows us to detect changes due to the acute and chronic diseases and has particular advantages when cancer is a concern. Read more about what ultrasound imaging can be used for below...

Chest and Heart

  • Examination of the heart is a very useful tool. We can measure the size and shape of the heart as with any organ but can actually watch the blood flowing through the heart, which is invaluable when choosing the appropriate treatments. This technique has a special name - Echocardiography
  • The lungs or pleura can be examined too, if these are diseased

Abdomen

  • Most commonly examination of the kidneys, liver, spleen, pancreas, urinary tract, reproductive organs and intestine
  • Pregnancy diagnosis
  • Diagnosis of bleeding or fluid accumulation

Muscles

  • Some forms of muscle, tendon and ligament damage can be diagnosed using ultrasound and this is an emerging field in veterinary medicine

Biopsies

  • The accurate direction and positioning we achieve by ultrasound imaging can allow biopsies to be taken without surgery

Weight Management

Crown Vets are proud to take a proactive approach to weight gain in pets. We recognise the effects weight gain and obesity can have, such as Diabetes, Osteoarthritis, Lifespan etc.  Our aim is to deal with it before it becomes problematic for you and your pet.

Our team of qualified veterinary nurses will chat in length with you to find out you and your pets daily routines and tailor a weight programme specific to your lifestyle. We set realistic and achievable goals in order to improve your pets quality of life, a loss of as little as 6% body weight can have a massive impact on your pets health!

Initial consultations are chargeable however free thereafter. With our guidance and support you will have a happier, healthier pet in no time. Don’t hesitate to contact us today to book your pet in with our team.