Allentown Cat Clinic

Allentown Cat Clinic

The Allentown Cat Clinic has been providing exceptional veterinary care to felines in the Lehigh Valley for nearly forty years.

Dedicated exclusively to cat medicine and surgery, the clinic strives to create a stress-free atmosphere for its animal patients. “We believe that being a ‘feline only’ facility helps the cats feel more comfortable,” explained Terri Zuber, Practice Manager. “They don’t have to worry about interactions with dogs, or become agitated by any of the smells or sounds associated with other species. So it’s a much calmer environment overall.”

Located at 4090 West Tilghman Street in Allentown, the clinic was originally established in 1978 by Dr. Michael Obenski. Its current owner, Dr. Michele Paul, began working with Obenski in 1994, and eventually purchased the practice in 2007. “I actually started working with Dr. Obenski right after I graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary School,” explained Paul. “So I’ve been here at the clinic for about 21 years now.”

Prior to attending the University of Pennsylvania, Paul had completed her undergraduate work in the pre-vet program at Wilson College in Chambersburg, PA. Her passion for cats, however, stems all the way back to childhood. “When I was a kid, there was a woman in my neighborhood who did cat-only house calls,” she said. “And I thought that was the coolest job in the world. So I guess I’ve just always been a cat person!”

There isn’t a moment that goes by that they aren’t loving on every animal here.

Among the medical services offered at the Allentown Cat Clinic are wellness and sick exams, dental procedures, digital radiographs, immunizations and parasite control, as well as surgical procedures such as spay, neuter, declaw, bladder stone removal, and tumor removal. By dedicating themselves to a single species, the clinic staff is able to streamline much of what they do and build upon their years of experience. “Since all we see are cats, the repetitiveness sticks in your head,” said Zuber. “And because of this, we are often able to diagnose certain things much faster than other veterinarians, which is an added benefit to our clients.”

In addition to providing top-quality medical attention, the clinic also offers short and long term boarding, geriatric care and dietary planning assistance. Educating the cat owners is considered a vital component of keeping the animals healthy and preventing future illnesses. “We really emphasize teaching people about their cats,” explained Zuber. “What are the signs of illnesses, what do certain litter box habits mean, what is the best food to feed your cat, etcetera. Our goal, really, is to help people understand their pets and learn the best ways to keep them healthy.”

The impact this education has on the overall health of the animals is already evident – particularly through areas such as dietary planning. “We teach people to feed their cats a diet of canned food,” said Paul. “This has not always been the conventional wisdom; in fact, for a long time it was thought that dry food was better for cats. However, what we’ve found is that wet food is actually much healthier because of the moisture content. Male cats, in particular, can get stones in their bladder that can lead to urinary track blockage. But by adjusting their diet to canned food, we have seen a 99% decrease in these blockages, as well as a 50% decrease in diabetes.”

Dr. Paul’s emphasis on preventative health care is also coupled with a more recent shift towards integrated medicine, which involves the use of herbal and natural medications. Essentially a combination of conventional and alternative approaches, integrated medicine is often viewed as a more “holistic” approach to treatment. “What we have seen is that natural medications often work better than conventional ones,” explained Paul. “You can get the same desired effect with little, if any, of the side-effects.”

But perhaps the best measure of the Allentown Cat Clinic’s success is the overwhelming satisfaction of its clients. With more than 3,000 patients, and approximately 45 new cats coming through the door each month, the clinic serves the needs of people throughout the Lehigh Valley and as far away as the Pocono Mountains and Philadelphia region. “Sometimes we see these cats for their entire lives – from beginning to end,” said Zuber. “So we really develop a bond with both the animals and their owners, and it can be
quite emotional.”

“I have the greatest staff members on the planet,” added Paul. “We work with cats day-in and day-out, and yet there isn’t a moment that goes by that they aren’t loving on every animal here. They all have a passion for what they do, and I think we know cats better than anyone else in the Lehigh Valley.”

For more information about the Allentown Cat Clinic and its services, please visit their website at allentowncatclinic.net.

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