Editors' Pick

Most Unusual Pet Specialties

Animal-lovers are going that extra mile for their pets, taking them to everything from veterinary ophthalmologists to radiologists to ease their suffering these days. And a growing number of practitioners are there to provide them with services. From 2006 to 2011, the number of U.S. vets rose from 81,000 to 92,000, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. In the Bethesda area, you can find vets offering a wide range of specialties—including a few you might not expect.

  • Animal Allergy & Dermatology Clinic. Is your cat wheezing and sneezing? Dr. James Jeffers, a veterinary dermatologist, treats pets suffering from pollen, mold and food allergies at this Gaithersburg clinic.
  • Animal Eye Care Center. We think of cataracts and glaucoma as human maladies. But at this Gaithersburg clinic, veterinary ophthalmologist Dr. Eric Smith provides treatment for pets suffering from those and other eye issues.
  • Veterinary Holistic Care. This Bethesda clinic takes an alternative approach, addressing “concerns of over- vaccination and over-medication,” and focusing on nutrition and integrative health care for pets, owner Dr. Nicholas Albano says.
  • Maryland-Virginia Veterinary Behavioral Consulting. You don’t think people are the only ones with “issues,” do you? Martha Reich, a veterinary behaviorist with this Silver Spring practice, often makes house calls to diagnose and address problems, including aggression and separation anxiety.
  • Animal healer. Eileen Buese of Bethesda says she uses her expertise as a psychologist to get to the root of pets’ psychological and physical problems. “I’ve been communicating with animals since childhood,” Buese says. “Animals are sentient beings; they have feelings.” Just like us.