Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Certified Aquatic Veterinarian?

To become a Certified Aquatic veterinarian, one must first have a valid Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from an accredited College of Veterinary Medicine. An application is made, and knowledge, skills and experience in 9 core areas specific to fish and aquatic animals must be demonstrated, validated and approved by the accreditation committee. The accreditation is valid for 5 years and can only be renewed with proof of continuing education and retention of specific skills which must be documented and validated by the World Aquatic Veterinary Medical Association.

How do I know if my fish is sick?

As with any animal, changes in appetite, activity level or behavior are signs that there is something wrong. Other clues include (but are not limited to) tattered fins, change in skin color, sores or skin ulcers, distended abdomen, protruding eyes, and abnormal swimming patterns.

Should I try water treatments or medicine purchased from a pet shop or online before calling you?

No, it is always best to call before starting any treatments or medications. It is important to first properly diagnose the condition so that the appropriate treatment is prescribed. Using over the counter treatments can mask the underlying cause of illness and impair diagnosis. Overuse and inappropriate use of antibiotics has led to the development of resistant strains of bacteria.

Why is it important for the examination and visit be performed as a house call rather than bringing my fish to you?

Since fish live in water, their health and well-being is directly influenced by the conditions of the pond or aquarium where they are housed. In addition to observing the fish in their habitat, valuable information is obtained by measuring and assessing a variety of water quality parameters as well as evaluating certain details of the plumbing and filtration systems which support their “home.”