What is a veterinary nutritionist?
A veterinary nutritionist is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN). These specialists have undergone residency training that includes at least two years of clinical work, teaching, research, and study of nutritional biochemistry. Residents are also required to submit case reports, publish scientific research, and pass a written examination in order to achieve board certification by the ACVN. With this intensive training, veterinary nutritionists gain expertise in the nutritional management of both healthy pets and pets with medical conditions.
What services are offered?
- Nutritional counseling
- Commercial diet recommendations
- Formulation of balanced home-cooked diet recipes
- Nutritional supplement recommendations
- Weight loss plans
- Specialized nutrition recommendations for hospitalized pets
Why consult with a nutrition specialist?
A veterinary nutritionist partners with pet owners and their primary care veterinarians to create customized nutrition plans for pets. Specialty nutrition services can be helpful for pets with medical conditions including kidney disease, gastrointestinal problems, suspected food allergies, obesity, and especially for pets with multiple health concerns. Consultation with a nutrition specialist is recommended for pet owners who are interested in feeding a home-cooked diet.
How does a nutrition consultation work?
Pet owners can work with the nutritionist by completing a diet history form and scheduling an appointment. Prior to the appointment, the nutritionist will review the pet’s diet history and medical records from the pet’s primary care veterinarian. During the appointment, the nutritionist will perform a physical examination, discuss nutritional goals and diet options based on the pet’s medical concerns, and address client questions. After the appointment, the pet owner will receive a customized nutrition plan with recommendations on diets, treats, supplements, monitoring, and follow-up. If desired, the nutritionist can formulate customized, balanced home-cooked diet recipes. A copy of the pet’s nutrition plan will be sent to the pet’s primary care veterinarian.
For pet owners who live outside the area or are unable to schedule a direct appointment, the nutritionist can provide a consultation to the pet’s primary care veterinarian based on the pet’s diet history and medical records. In these cases, the primary care veterinarian manages communication with the pet owner. Veterinarian consultations are managed through the nutrition service at VCA San Francisco Veterinary Specialists.
Where and when are nutrition specialty services available?
VCA San Francisco Veterinary Specialists -- Mondays, Thursdays, and alternating Saturdays
VCA Bay Area Veterinary Specialists -- Tuesdays (starting June 2016)
VCA Animal Care Center of Sonoma County -- Wednesdays
To schedule an appointment or learn more about our nutrition specialty services, please contact one of the following specialty hospitals:
VCA San Francisco Veterinary Specialists
600 Alabama Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
VCA Bay Area Veterinary Specialists
14790 Washington Ave, San Leandro, CA 94578
VCA Animal Care Center of Sonoma County
6470 Redwood Drive, Rohnert Park, CA 94928
Frequently Asked Questions
- Does your facility provide parking for clients?
Yes we do!
Option #1: Street parking in the area is available throughout the day with no 2 hour parking limits (Overnight parking subject to street sweeping 12am-6am, see posted street signs for specific limitations.)
Option #2: Erie Auto Body - Adjacent to the side of our building at 3014 18th Street at Harrison St. we have 4 designated spaces for client use. Simply pull up into any of the 4 stalls being mindful not to block the entrance to the auto body shop's garage door.
Option #3: Parking Garage - If you still cannot find a spot pull up into the white loading zone directly in front of our main entrance, check in at the front desk and we will give you directions to our garage. It is merely 2/3 of a block down the street at 660 Alabama.
Please note parking for longer than 10 minutes in the white loading zone is not advised as San Francisco Department of Public Transportation frequently patrols the area and will ticket your vehicle.