Pet Connections

Sarver Animal Hospital: Focusing on Overall Pet Health

by Nate Lasher

When she opened Sarver Animal Hospital in February of 2015, Dr. Nicole Milligan began structuring her practice in a way that would promote the overall health and wellness of her patients.

“As our society has changed, pets have become more like our family members,” said Dr. Milligan. “They are not just animals that people have in their homes. You want your pets to stay healthy, and you want to have them in your life for as long as possible.”

Focusing less on the quantity of appointments per day and more on the quality of those appointments, Dr. Milligan and her staff are devoted to providing clients and their pets with a low-stress and educational environment. One important part of creating this environment is the implementation of extended appointment times. These longer appointments allow the staff more time to minimize any fear and/or stress pets may be experiencing while also providing owners with a large opportunity to express any questions or concerns.

“I really enjoy client education, so I like to talk about everything as thoroughly as possible,” said Dr. Milligan. “I like to take my time so that clients understand all of their options and make educated decisions. I would never pressure them into doing something that they don’t want to do when it comes to the treatment of their pets.”

Sarver Animal Hospital is currently working toward certifications for low-stress handling and feline-friendly practice. They also follow fear-free practice guidelines. Stress-minimizing measures are a key part of what makes the veterinary hospital unique.

While providing the usual veterinary services including, but not limited to, comprehensive physical examinations, vaccinations, diagnostics, general soft tissue surgeries, spays and neuters, deworming, and microchipping, Sarver Animal Hospital also offers nutrition and dietary counseling, preventive dental care, and behavior consultations.

“Most animals have dental disease, so dental care is very important,” said Dr. Milligan. “We recommend in-home preventative dental care and regular dental cleanings. Just like in humans, dental health is often connected to other health issues.”

When dealing with the nutrition and diet of peoples’ pets, the staff at Sarver Animal Hospital will often provide food recommendations based on an animal’s specific medical condition or health status. They also do things like calculate ideal body weights and create feeding guidelines for owners to follow if they decide to do so.

Dr. Milligan is very focused on staying up-to-date on current practices in the veterinary field.

“Everything we do here is the latest and the gold-standard for our profession,” she said. “I work to confirm that the vaccines we use are all good vaccines, and I make sure that my treatment protocols for different kinds of diseases are what the experts currently recommend. Continuing education is very important to me.”

In order to provide a few alternative therapies in the near future, co-owner, Dr. Tamara Padgelek, has been in Florida training at the Chi Institute of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine. These alternative therapies are set to include acupuncture and some herbal medicines.

Also planned for the future, Sarver Animal Hospital will be moving down a few doors from their current location and into a larger space.

“We will have more exam rooms and more room for hospitalization, “said Dr. Milligan. “I do also plan to add another doctor eventually so that we will be able to see more pets. We will be having an open house when we move – probably in the spring time.”

Originally from Kittanning, PA, Dr. Milligan earned her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in 2011 from North Carolina State University. She currently shares her home with her husband Burnett, Monty the Cat, and Daisy the Golden Retriever.

Sarver Animal Hospital is a full service veterinary clinic serving the needs of dogs and cats in Sarver, PA and the surrounding area. The practice is currently located at 616 S. Pike Road, Rt. 356, Sarver, PA 16055 and can be contacted by phone at (724) 295-9933. For more information, visit their website at www.sarveranimalhospital.com or view their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/sarveranimalhospital.

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