Is a telephone consult appropriate/necessary for my pet?
In order to provide the best possible care for your pet, ideally we should try to arrange an in home visit
where we can examine your pet and discuss all of the important issues you are facing. However, we
know that this may not always be possible. For example, you may be located outside of our normal
service area, or we may need to just provide more specific advice on your particular situation. To
address this need, we now offer telephone consultations.
If you would like general information on topics concerning how to make a decision regarding
euthanasia, how to recognize if your pet is in pain, options that are available for aftercare, etc., please
see our
FAQ page. However, if you would like to discuss your pet's unique circumstances (e.g. medical
condition, symptoms, etc.) and get specific advice, then a telephone consultation may be appropriate.
Telephone consults are typically less than 30 minutes and can provide you with advice on topics such
  •        How to evaluate quality of life in your pet
  •        Specific things to look for in your pet to help know when it is time
  •        Options for pain control
  •        Dealing with a paralyzed pet
  •        Discussing care surrounding achieving a "natural" death
  •        Ongoing medication management
  •        Palliative and Hospice care considerations

Please be aware that we generally cannot prescribe any medication based only on a telephone consult
(unless we have recently seen your pet). However, we may be able to work with you and your regular
veterinarian to find medications that may be effective at helping your pet.

How do I set up a phone consult?
To set up a phone consult, either phone or e-mail us (or submit a "New Client Form" by clicking on the
link at the bottom of the page) Let us know the best day/time(s) to call for the consultation and include
the following information in your initial e-mail or phone message:
  •        Your name and phone number
  •        Pet's name, age, species, and breed
  •        A very brief description of the diagnosis or main problem(s)

We will then return your call or e-mail with a proposed date/time for the consult (daytime, evening, and
weekend appointments are possible). Once we agree on an acceptable time, we will contact you
regarding setting up a payment. When the time for the consult arrives, Dr. Smith will call you to discuss
all of the issues of concern, answer your questions, and develop a plan for the ongoing care of your pet.
If appropriate, we will also arrange for any follow up information to be sent or appointments to be made.

How much does a phone consult cost?
The cost for the consultation is $75 for up to 30 minutes. If needed, additional time will be charged at
$25 for each 15 minutes thereafter. Payments can be made by check or by credit card via PayPal
(instructions for payment will be discussed once we've set up the consult, but before the actual

What information should we have prior to the appointment?
In order to use your time most efficiently and ensure that your questions are answered accurately, it is
helpful to collect as much of the following information as possible and have it ready for our call:
  • Name of your pet's regular veterinarian/contact info
  • List of all medications that your pet is receiving, including dosages
  • Recent history of the problems facing your pet
  • Results of any recent testing done by your veterinarian (if you'd like it may be helpful to have  
    your vet FAX your pet's records directly to us at 888-786-4579)
  • List of questions that you would like answered
© Copyright 2013 Rainbow Bridge Vet Services
Anthony J. Smith, DVM
Hercules, CA  94547
Telephone Consultations
(510) 381-3389