Stressed pets? Mobile pet care could be the answer

Mobile pet care races to the rescue of nervous animals

DETROIT – Many pet owners struggle to get their dogs or cats to the veterinarian.

If you have an anxious pet, you know how long and miserable that ride to the vet can be, and you can have a similar experience going to the groomer as well. Now, pet care on wheels is coming to the rescue of anxious animals and concerned owners.

Mobile vet clinics and groomers, who make house calls, are making life a little easier for everyone. Dr. Erin Zaring has always loved taking care of animals, and since she started taking her clinic to her clients six years ago, she's seen her business grow. She says the convenience is hard to beat, and that's not even the best part.

She says she the mobile visit is also helps the pet's health.

"When I get to examine an animal completely because they're not stressed and they're not so upset that they're resisting the exam, I can gather a lot more information and give them a much more comprehensive exam," adds Dr. Zaring.

In the mobile unit, she says she can do just about anything they do at a traditional bricks-and-mortar clinic, including taking x-rays, administering anesthesia and conducting surgeries.

"The real advantage of a mobile vet is really for your pet. They don't have to have the stress of the car ride of going to the vet or waiting in the waiting room because they can stay in their own environment and be treated," said Angie Hicks, the founder and CEO of Angie's List.

Dr. Zaring says most mobile vets will add a travel fee of about 50 dollars, but that their vet services usually cost less than at a traditional clinic because of their low overhead. She says more and more people are also using their euthanasia services, so their pets can be more comfortable as they are laid to rest peacefully at their home.

Grooming can be stressful too, how about a pet spa coming to you?

A trip to the groomer can cause just as much stress for an animal as a trip to the vet. Groomers like Lucky Dog Mobile Grooming Spa, based in Sterling Heights, are also jumping on the mobile pet car bandwagon. They roll up with a truck that contains a mobile grooming spa and park right in front of the house. As pet owners know, the car ride to the groomer can be the most stressful part of the experience. Pets always seem to know where they're headed!

Having the spa right outside, "It eliminates the car ride. So, they don't even have time to think about it... Literally, they walk right outside and into the van. They get into the van and they don't even really know what hit them," said Lauren Holzen of Lucky Dog Mobile Grooming Spa.

The mobile spa is able to provide all the services of a traditional brick and mortar location. Remember, Michigan groomers are not required to be licensed by the state, so it's a good idea to check out reviews on sites like Angie's List or Yelp. The cost of the mobile groomer is around 25 percent more than what you would pay at a traditional pet salon.

For some pet owners, mobile pet care may be more convenient and more comfortable for your pet.

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About the Author:

Hank Winchester is Local 4’s Consumer Investigative Reporter and the head of WDIV’s “Help Me Hank” Consumer Unit. Hank works to solve consumer complaints, reveal important recalls and track down thieves who have ripped off people in our community.