Ark Vets Galway's home page
Knocknacarra 091 510131
St. Mary's Road 091 584185


Learn about our referral service

  • Referral Services
  • Client FAQ's
  • Referring Vet FAQ's

Referral Services

At Ark Vets Galway, making sure that your pet is free from discomfort or illness is always our number one priority. The Practice Philosophy is that we want to continually strive to improve the team skills to help our patients with the most advanced pet care.

We are trying to grow high quality veterinary skills and make these skills available to animals in the region so that we can offer them the best available chance of a good quality of life. At the moment we offer referral consultations to our colleagues in

  • Internal Medicine
  • Orthopaedics
  • Soft Tissue Surgery
  • Dermatology
  • Ophthalmology
  • Dentistry

Client FAQ's

What do I need to bring with me?
An up-to-date record of your pets treatment is desirable, as are copies of any x-rays or blood tests or other investigative work undertaken already by your own vet. Your pet should have been vaccinated within the previous 12 months by your own vet – if not, ask them to carry this out prior to referral if at all practical.

Do I need to fast my pet?
For all cats and dogs, food should be taken away from 8pm the evening prior to your appointment. Water does not have to be withheld.

How long will the appointment take?
Most referral appointments last 30 minutes. If your pet is being admitted for surgery, they may need to stay with us for a few days. If your pet is being admitted for investigation, they may be able to go home the same evening, but it depends on how extensive the investigations are. We are usually able to give you a better idea when we meet you and examine your pet.

Can I be seen on a Saturday or Sunday?
Because of reduced staff levels at the weekend we accept only emergency cases on these days.

How much will it cost?
We can advise you over the phone for many queries. Unfortunately, some complex diseases are not easy to estimate for without seeing your pet. All you are committing to before we see you is our referral consultation fee. Any other investigation or treatment will be estimated prior to admitting your pet. For major investigations and treatment, we require a deposit be paid prior to admission.

How can I pay for treatment?
We accept all major credit and debit cards and cash. We do not accept cheques at this time. Payment in full is on collection of your pet.

Will my insurance cover the costs of treatment?
We can provide an estimate of costs to be sent to your insurers by you as a ‘pre-authorisation’; they can tell you directly whether costs will be covered. We are unable to speak on behalf of insurers and many insurance companies will only deal with the policyholder directly.

How can I find you?
Please click on the link here to be directed to our Knocknacarra Practice.

Who will be looking after my pet?
You will usually meet the referral clinician looking after your pet when you arrive. Our team of fully qualified vets and nurses will be involved in the care of your pet. Occasionally, a problem may be identified that requires combined expertise and the care of your pet may be transferred to a colleague within the team, but this will be discussed with you first.

What happens after my pet has surgery?
Invariably, animals will need a period of close confinement or cage rest to recuperate. If you do not have a cage or access to one, let us know and we will order one for you. In certain cases [e.g. spinal injuries], we recognise that their care requires professional attention and these animals are hospitalised with us for much longer. Once an animal is due to go home, we will arrange an appointment with you and discuss all aspects of their aftercare and rehabilitation

Do I need to let my own vet know what is happening?
There should be no need – usually we will be in touch with your own vet before you arrive back to them.

Referring Vet FAQ's

What services do you provide?
We currently offer a complete orthopaedic service, from simple cast fracture repair, through spinal surgery, arthroscopy, TPLO and Total Hip Replacement. We also offer a complete medical service including Radiology, Endoscopy, ECG, Cardiac and Abdominal Ultrasound, GIT workup, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, Oncology and Haematology/Auto-Immune disease. We also have a big Dentistry caseload.

What facilities are available?
We can house animals from cats to the largest breed of dog. We provide separate soft tissue and orthopaedic theatres to minimise the risk of infection. There are separate facilities for dentistry and dirty procedures away from the main clean areas to prevent cross-contamination.

Over the years we have invested heavily in state-of-the-art equipment to make diagnosis that bit more precise. A non-exhaustive list is presented below:


  • Bipolar and Monopolar Electrosurgery    
  • Full AO/ASIF kit from 1.5 to 4.5mm    
  • Full Spinal Surgical Kit    
  • Hip Replacement Cemented and Cementless    
  • IMEX and KE ESF    
  • Sterile Suction Unit
  • 2.4 and 2.7mm Arthroscope    
  • SOP Locking Plating System


  • ECG
  • Ultrasound 3.5MHz to 10.0MHz
  • CR Radiography, Bucky-type table
  • Operating Magnifying glasses for difficult ophthalmic cases
  • Intradermal Skin Testing
  • Sterile Suction Unit Gastroscopy
  • Bronchoscope with port for BAL
  • High resolution Microscope for cytology

Who will see my client?
All of the team are familiar with triage of referred patients. While we have individual areas of interest, in the event of an emergency or out-of-hours, all of our vets will be able to admit the animal and treat it until such a time as the relevant expert can be contacted. 

Can I see the procedure being done?
We have an open-door policy and any vet wishing to see a particular procedure is more than welcome to attend. Due to a heavy caseload, we do not always specify a particular time that a procedure will be done at. If you are interested in seeing a particular technique, please contact us.

Who will get back to me and how?
The referral clinician dealing with the case will contact you. Please let us know whether you prefer a letter, email or phone call and we will oblige you. Any discharge advice given to the client will be forwarded to you also.

What will happen if there is a complication with treatment?
Most complications are minor and will be foreseen prior to the patient being discharged. These can be dealt with at your own practice. Any major complication should be referred back to us at the earliest opportunity. If you are in any doubt about the severity of a complication, please contact us in the first instance.

What will happen if a client asks for other treatment to be carried out at our practice?
In general, we will not allow succession under any circumstances. However, in rare occasions, we may phone you for permission for certain treatment to be undertaken while the animal is under the same anaesthetic. Clients will always be asked to return to their referring practices.

Can you give me an estimate of costs over the phone?
For many orthopaedic procedures, we are happy to provide estimates. However, certain things are difficult to estimate for such as internal medical problems, multi-limb trauma or multi-system injuries.

Practice information


  • Mon
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Tue
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Wed
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Thu
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Fri
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
    9:00am - 4:00pm
  • Sun

Find us here:

Miller’s Hall Bóthar Stiofán Western Distributor Road Knocknacarra Galway H91 TD0F
get directions with Google Maps

St. Mary's Road

  • Mon
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Tue
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Wed
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Thu
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Fri
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
  • Sun

Find us here:

46 St. Mary’s Road Galway H91 HY88
get directions with Google Maps