A Trip to the Newark Veterinary Hospital

Guest blogger, Paul J. Mason, a local artist here in the Ironbound, shared his very positive experience at the Newark Veterinary Hospital. Here’s a sneak preview:

Enter the Newark Veterinary Hospital. Some of you who have been here longer than I may remember Dr. Ehren Yablon from the large mobile home he used to park at the five corners and practice from. I didn’t know about this myself, I found him in his new digs online. I made an appointment as soon as I could.

Now mind you, the trip there was in itself making me nervous. Babaloo is an old cat (he’s 12), and the trip in the box made him cry in a very sad way most of the way there. I live on the far side of Independence Park, so it’s not at all a short walk — and on the way there begins to turn from the Ironbound to the area we refer to as ‘Thunderdome’. So as the neighborhood got shadier, I began to worry just where I was taking my cat.

When we arrived, I was very happy to be proven wrong. It was a completely new space, clean, and well lit. He was seen to immediately (after forms of course, but they only take a moment), and treated with care. Dr. Yablon is considerate, kind, informed, and (unlike most vets) explains everything he’s doing.

Check out the full post after the jump.


About a week and change ago I read a posting on this very blog about a man and his unfortunate experiences at the Emergency Room at St. James Hospital. Being a relatively new addition to the Ironbound (I have lived here almost a year now) it makes you think: “What would happen if I had to make that run to the emergency room?” Certainly sobering on it’s own, but a select few of us have an additional thought:

“What if my pet (dog, cat, chimp, what have you) got sick? Where do I take them?”

To me, this is a very serious question. I have three cats: Miette (a feisty calico), Lily (a cuddly food sucking machine), and Babaloo (a warm but crotchety old Tom), and they’re far from being kittens anymore, so the prospect of veterinary care is more a reality than not.

Recently, Babaloo got sick, and that very question was put in the spotlight. The answer is what I would like to share with you all, my experience at the Newark Veterinary Hospital (105 South St., off McCarter).

Before I start, there is a short history of animals, Newark, and me. In the early 00’s my grandmother’s dog died, and she wanted a new one, so we took a trip to a shelter (over a pet store, for humane reasons) — the Associated Humane Societies on Evergreen Ave. Now granted, this is quite a few years ago, but at that time it was like a visit to pet Riker’s. Dark and dingy, pets in badly kept dirty cells, staff that didn’t seem to care — it was a shock we even found her dog, a tiny Chihuahua mix, in one of the huge dark cells. Though happy to have saved the poor thing from the place, I was turned off from the start (those of you who care will be happy to know Chi-Chi is currently residing comfortably and incredibly spoiled with my grandmother). I truly hope it’s changed since.

Back then, I lived in Elizabeth. Today I live in the Ironbound, and though fully realizing Newark has more than enough sobering moments (that always seem to come up right after I’m defending it to someone, Newark and irony walk hand in hand), I have settled well here, I like my area, and find it much easier and cost effective to get to work in NYC. It was soon after I had moved here that my next experience with Newark and animals occurred: Paco.

OK, so that’s not really his name, I don’t think we ever found what his given name was. Paco was a dog that was found on Market Street. My girlfriend and her family live off of Market; her sisters’ boyfriend was on his way home and found a dog, limping and bloody, in the street. The dog came easily enough and was friendly- my girlfriend was contacted (her sister was still at work), who in turn called me. We secured the dog to find we couldn’t hang on to him long: their landlord was literal in their not having pets, and I have my three cats, who would not at all welcome him. So we started to make some calls, to find some kind of place we could bring him while we tracked down the owner.

The first call was to Animal Control, to see if they could recommend a course of action. This is what they suggested:

“You should have just left him there” (In the street). Hey, thanks guys! Way to care!

That being out of the question we started to make calls, to all available vets and state run humane societies (the ASPCA even told me they would call back, and they didn’t until a day and a half later, which was long after Paco was home again). Eventually he had to be taken to the very previously mentioned Animal Shelter, as they were the only ones who would take him (they sent a van, so I can’t report if it’s changed or not). Fortunately the owner responded to the flyers that were printed up promptly, so Paco only had to spend half a day there, if that (for those who care, Paco’s fate is to date unknown, presumed content).

Time passed, until one day Babaloo started shooting poop out of his butt and all over the bathroom. I mean literally. It was terrible. The first step was to isolate which cat was doing this, I can’t watch them all the time (and at first I thought it was one of the girls). When I caught him red pawed (?) one day, I could see he was in a modicum of pain too, squirming and meowing.

Usually, I am most prone to freak out and worry first. Research on the net confirmed my fears, making some suggestions I tried (changing food mostly) but to no avail. I had to find a vet — his previous vet was rather far away (in Roselle), and I wanted to find something closer first, as going farther would involve public transport with him in that cat carrier he hates so.

Enter the Newark Veterinary Hospital. Some of you who have been here longer than I may remember Dr. Ehren Yablon from the large mobile home he used to park at the five corners and practice from. I didn’t know about this myself, I found him in his new digs online. I made an appointment as soon as I could.

Now mind you, the trip there was in itself making me nervous. Babaloo is an old cat (he’s 12), and the trip in the box made him cry in a very sad way most of the way there. I live on the far side of Independence Park, so it’s not at all a short walk — and on the way there begins to turn from the Ironbound to the area we refer to as ‘Thunderdome’. So as the neighborhood got shadier, I began to worry just where I was taking my cat.

When we arrived, I was very happy to be proven wrong. It was a completely new space, clean, and well lit. He was seen to immediately (after forms of course, but they only take a moment), and treated with care. Dr. Yablon is considerate, kind, informed, and (unlike most vets) explains everything he’s doing.

He spent a good amount of time with Babaloo and gave him an antibiotic shot and some pills. I had to go back and deliver a stool sample later (when he more or less left me one). So from the office visit alone I was content that he was well taken care of. This was even reinforced more so the next day — the doctor called me to check on him! Let me say that again to be totally clear: he called me to check on him. Unbelievable. No vet I ever had did that — hell, my own doctors don’t even do that. Two days later I brought a stool sample and the doctor showed me his blood test results and went through them: once more, with me, explaining what everything meant and his assessments thereof in close detail. Here again, with my own doctors this is unheard of.

There’s always a down side. I have to play devils advocate to be fair. First, there’s the price. Taking Babaloo for an exam, a shot, blood test, etc. cost more than taking me to the doctor. However you get what you pay for, you could pay a lot less and have your animal taken care off much more haphazardly … I groaned, but would have paid anything so he wouldn’t be in pain. The second is the neighborhood, which is kind of far from Ironbound central (if you’re walking) and kind of ratty. The doctor explained to me he had no choice — when he switched his mobile home practice for a more stationary one, trying to find a space on Ferry Street was ridiculously priced. So until he finds another, be prepared for the trip. I am trying to help him find another, but if anyone has any information about a commercial space closer to Ferry St. for the good doctor, please give him a ring at the info below.

Today Babaloo is getting better. Still a few accidents, but less frequent, and we really haven’t found the specific problem yet — his stool sample is still at the lab. At the very least I can be quite confident that he is indeed in competent and caring hands.

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Author: Ken Walker

Husband, Father, Newarker, PCA Elder, Business Analyst. In a glass case of emotion since 1978.

3 thoughts on “A Trip to the Newark Veterinary Hospital”

  1. I’ve had a bad run in with Animal Control in the past and it’s very nice to hear that we have options in regards to our pets.
    Thanks for the posting!

    Like

  2. It’s hard enough to take care of ourselves in these hard times but we can not forget those that are dependent on us like our pets.
    I hope Babaloo feels better soon.

    Like

  3. I’ve been looking for a vet to bring my 2 year old lab for general care in the area and stopped in the Newark Veterinary Hospital after reading about it.I got a good feel from the staff and the information I was provided with.
    I’ll be going back for my dogs next checkup.

    Like

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