In a city that happens to boast more canines than children, it should come as no surprise that pup-loving Capitol Hill has experienced a boom in dog-related businesses over the last few years. But these days, Broadway Veterinary Hospital sees a lot more than just routine visits from your average Fido and feline.
“Ferrets, rabbits, rodents, chickens, and I’ve seen my fair share of goats as well,” says owner and doctor of veterinary medicine Greg McWilliams about his range of clientele.
You may have noticed the newly raised red rotating sign on 12th Ave or extended hours — now open seven days a week from 8am to 8pm — just a couple of changes Broadway Veterinary Hospital has seen since McWilliams took over the practice in December of 2013.
Pet owners now have a new option for emergency care. Aside from wellness visits, vaccines, neuters, and dental, the hospital’s new emergency services mean the hospital can offer preventative and interventional care to combat severe illnesses and assist animals in critical care conditions.
The hospital has gone through many changes, first opened by Mike Desrosier in 1986, and then taken over by Sandy Coon who still practices at the hospital. But transitioning the practice into an emergency hospital is the biggest yet. To meet the demand, they’ve beefed up their staff, going from a two-doctor practice to a four-doctor practice.
“Rather than this hospital continue to do what everyone else did, we basically looked at what the skill set of our doctors, and how can we distinguish ourselves,” said McWilliams. “Rather than being another vet hospital offering the same services, we had to figure out what’s the need in the area, and offer that.”
A one-stop shop for the animal, pet owners receive test results immediately, preventing a prolonged wait for bad news and any additional suffering an animal may experience. “It’s a really tech driven environment, everything is digital including the x-ray system, ultrasound allows them to capture, files are easily transferrable,” says McWilliam. “It’s all telemedicine, the radiologist can be right there with you so we can get instantaneous results right then.”
Establishing itself as an emergency care hospital has also made it possible for surrounding neighborhood animal care clinics, like Urban Animal (which CHS reported on recently here), to refer clients to Broadway Veterinary Hospital to handle animal emergency care cases.
“When you offer ER services, you turn yourself into a referral hospital,” says McWilliams. “It’s tricky, you want to fix that fracture, but you want to send that patient back to their vet, all of a sudden all these other hospitals become patients of ours.”
Still, McWilliams said he hopes to maintain the same book of clients built over the 25 years plus Broadway Vet has been in business. McWilliams said most of their clients continue to come from Capitol Hill, though some travel from outside the city.
“That has probably more to do with the history of the hospital being here so long,” he says. “We’re lucky to have a high-quality clientele that love their pets so much.”
They’re likely to gain a lot more Capitol Hill patients, as the hospital has plans in place to begin 24-hour emergency care starting in mid-November.
Broadway Veterinary Hospital is located at 1824 12th Ave. You can learn more at broadwayvh.com.