Tuesday, September 05, 2006

pets to the vet?

In a recent comment, Sara asks:

Do you have any ideas on car free pet ownership?
If your black lab is sick, how do you get him to the vet? What about the plain old routine vet visits and obedience classes?

This is a tough one. Buses, taxis, car rental companies, and carsharing organizations are all probably not willing to accommodate pets, even in emergencies. It is not impossible to use a trailer or wagon to haul a pet carrier to the vet by bike or foot. However, if your pet is sick or hurt, they may not appreciate such travel accommodations. As best I can figure, that leaves two options.

Use a vet that is close to your home. As pet owners, we generally choose a vet based on recommendations and quality service over location and convenience. However, if there is a vet close by, it may be worth checking into. I tried to find a vet in Ann Arbor that does house calls without success. This won’t cover all situations, but will make it easier if you are without a car.

The second option is to call in a favor and ask a friend, neighbor, or family member for a ride. Especially in emergencies, this is a good resource to turn to. Other pet owners are more likely to understand your needs and accept a little dog hair in the back seat, so introduce yourself to neighbors with cats in their windows and dogs in their yards.

I wish I could offer more practical advice here. Does anyone else have tips on carfree pet shuttling?


peter honeyman said...

call a cab (too obvious?)

peter honeyman said...

oops, i see you ruled out taxis. since when won't taxis transport dogs?

graypixie said...

I've taken a concealed guinea pig onto a bus... (!)

Another time, in a cab, the driver said he had no problem taking animals. Mine was small, though, so I don't know about a large dog.

Friends have helped out, too.

Scott said...

I guess I just assumed that taxis wouldn't be willing to deal with uncontained, large(ish) animals like dogs in their cabs. But I couldn't find any specific rules about animals from taxi companies.

It's good to hear that people have run into cab-driving dog lovers.

Edward said...

We used to put our small cat into the cat carrier and stick the carrier on its end into the milk crate on the back of the bike. Poor Naomi would go meowing the whole way.