Referral Veterinarians- What's the Difference?

Some pets have serious illnesses which need to be evaluated by a veterinary specialist. We will refer your pet to a doctor who is a specialist in their field to provide the highest level of care. The referral veterinarian will work with us to best manage and hopefully cure your pet's ailment. Veterinary specialists receive the same basic 4 year undergraduate degree and then 4 years of advanced veterinary training as your regular veterinarian, plus an additional year long internship and 2-4 years of specialty training at a university or specialty practice, called a residency. Veterinarians who complete this rigorous training successfully must then pass a comprehensive examination to assess their skills and obtain board certification as a specialist. Special training is available in many fields, including radiology and ultrasound, surgery, internal medicine, dermatology, cardiology, behavior, neurology, and ophthalmology.

Specialists have access to some of the most advanced technology such as ultrasound, endoscopy, and MRI or CT Scans, and by using these modalities routinely have the expertise to interpret the results accurately. For example, any veterinarian can purchase an ultrasound machine, but few have the ability to accurately diagnose or find liver shunts, tumors, adrenal glands and the like. It takes hundreds of ultrasounds to obtain the level needed to be proficient.  We do utilize Dr Jason Tomes, of Berks Veterinary Ultrasound to perform ultrasounds at our hospital on Wednesdays as needed.  This saves our clients a long drive and some money versus traveling to see a specialist.


We will provide the initial results and copies of any applicable radiographs and bloodwork to the specialist so that they can determine how best to proceed. We will recommend a specialist that we feel provides the highest level of care possible for the best outcome for your pet.

Some referral hospitals we routinely use include the following:


Northeast Veterinary Emergency and Referral, Plains PA


Valley Central Referral Hospital, Whitehall

(610) 435-1553

surgery, internal medicine, ophthalmology, cardiology.


Veterinary Referral Center, Malvern

800-945-VETS, surgery, internal medicine, dermatology, cardiology.dentistry



Metropolitan Veterinary Associates, Valley Forge

(610) 666-1050

Cardiology, Dentistry, Dermatology, Emergency, Internal Medicine, Neurology, Ophthalmology, Radiology, Surgery

Visit our Office