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Reptile Veterinarians 


Choosing the right reptile vet can be more difficult than just finding one. Some vets will treat your turtle or lizard, but they might not necessarily be experts doing this. Vets need lots of experience in treating exotic species to become a certified herp veterinarian, and the only way to accuire it is through practice. So, you might end up with someone who is in a way still experimenting and learning while treating your animal. It does not mean that they will do a bad job on your pet, but it is always better to look for already experienced in herp medicine animal doctor.

The most important thing in choosing your vet is to find an honest one. He or she should let you know up-front how much experience they have in treating reptiles, or turtles in particular. How much will it cost shouldn't be a factor while choosing a vet. It pays off to invest in a well established doctor insead of someone who is cheaper because of still experimenting. A lot of well known experienced herp vets gain their knowleadge while doing field assignements. They go to exotic places like Costa Rica for example, places with rich and diverse reptile populations. Some will gain their expertise working for herp departments for ZOO's, and then they move onto a private practice.

The more prominent reptile medicine veterinarians will be members of the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians (ARAV). Ask them if they are - this will ensure that they stay in touch with the herp community and are up to date with all that's new in the herp medicine world.

So, basically the most important thing to do before choosing a doctor for your turtle is to do some research, make a list of all the vets in your area and call them with few questions. Find out what type of exotic species hey treat, if they treat turtles in particular and how many years of experience with reptiles they have.


More reading & related links:
 
        Basic snapping turtle info in one file - Introduction to snapping turtles.pdf (116 Kb)  

 


          
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