Have your pet’s complete medical history at your fingertips in case of an after-hours emergency. I know I will be downloading this app to use for my fur babies. We have a collie mix named Tutu who is 10, A spoiled rotten Shih Tzu Allie who is 4. We also just recently adopted a mama cat and her kittens. Markie, Jinxy and Tyger are total sweethearts.
It’s been heavily reported that visits to veterinary emergency clinics increase during the holidays. Many pet parents are well aware of the numerous hazards to their pets during this time of year. Some even prepare emergency kits to make sure they will be covered, should an incident occur. But the makers of VitusVet – the mobile app that allows users to view their pets’ complete medical records at any time – warns pet owners could be missing one of the most vital elements needed during a health crisis. How will you access your pets’ updated medical records and how difficult will they be to obtain during a holiday-related emergency, when most offices are closed for extended periods of time?
The free VitusVet app, which launched this past May, is currently the only method that allows veterinary offices to share their patients’ entire medical record history with their valuable clients when they need it the most – during an emergency. It is also the only app of its kind that includes a pet owner-facing solution, which also allows the user to invite friends and family to view their pet’s history and offers a search option to find the closest veterinary emergency clinic – both crucial during the holidays when college students may be home from school or people will be traveling with their pets.
“Fifteen million pets went to the ER last year, where there is essentially no after-hours record access. We know that spikes over the holidays, due to pets ingesting people food and other holiday objects, like ornaments, tinsel, and poinsettias,” said Mark Olcott, DVM and co-founder of VitusVet. “We created VitusVet to help pet owners in their greatest time of need and to put an end to preventable tragedies. One key bit of information in a pet’s medical records could mean the difference between life and death and pet owners should be able to access that information whenever they need it.”
Two recent cases come to mind. Sundance, a cat belonging to Karen J. from Albany, New York, had blood work done prior to his neuter and all was normal. However at eight-months-old, he went into complete kidney failure with no explanation. Since Karen’s primary veterinary clinic was closed, she rushed Sundance to an emergency clinic. Emergency clinicians feared he had an untreatable kidney-related birth defect and were unable to get in touch with Sundance’s primary care veterinarian. But Karen was able to show his original baseline blood work through her VitusVet app on her phone and with that critical piece of information, the emergency vets were able to save his life.
Daisy Mae, a pug belonging to Kristin M. from Frederick, Maryland, had recently been treated by her local veterinarian for a urinary tract infection. Prescribed an antibiotic, Kristin assumed Daisy Mae was on the road to recovery. However, while traveling to see her in-laws, Kristin noticed Daisy was drinking a lot of water, seemed lethargic, and was having accidents in the house. She was rushed to an emergency clinic where Kristin was asked what medication Daisy had been given. While she couldn’t recall, she had the VitusVet app on her phone and could access Daisy’s records. A stronger medication was prescribed and Daisy’s UTI cleared up. At 14, an untreated UTI could’ve led to serious health concerns for Daisy, had it not been caught in time and treated properly.
“VitusVet is the only app that will provide complete medical records, not just lab work or vaccines,” says Kalpesh Raval, co-founder of VitusVet. “Pet parents shouldn’t have to wait for something to be emailed or faxed when time is of the essence. Having this comprehensive information literally at your fingertips leaves pets less vulnerable to medical mistakes.”
VitusVet also allows pet owners to upload their own notes, take photos, and schedule appointments with their veterinarians, in addition to the comprehensive medical history and the “Find an ER” function. Pet owners are also able set medication and vaccination reminders and invite family, kennel, dog walkers, pet sitters, and others to view their pets’ profiles, so everyone receives the same instructions for care. Additionally, the app allows for record sharing between multiple veterinarians – this is crucial, as many pet owners mistakenly assume an emergency clinic recommended by their primary care veterinarian will already have their pet’s record on file.
“The bottom line is, more information leads to better care,” says Dr. Olcott. “With travel and all the other stresses that come during the holiday months, the app offers one less thing to worry about. VitusVet can help provide peace of mind when it comes to your pet’s health.”