Sunrise Veterinary Group
Published: Dec 31, 2012

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If you're considering dog adoption, then the first step is to visit a local animal shelter where you can meet some canines in need of a home. This can sometimes be a lengthy process, but it's important that you take the time to find a canine companion who suits you and your family's needs. It's never a good idea to adopt a pet until you're certain you can provide him with a "forever home." Your initial interaction with a potential canine companion can tell you a lot about whether or not he'll be compatible with your lifestyle, so here are some tips to keep in mind during your first visit to an adoption center.

Speaking with staff
Most adoption facilities appreciate advance notice if you're planning to visit their animals. This will also allow you to set up an appointment with a staff member to discuss the canines who are available. During this consultation, ask about any pet health issues the dogs you're visiting may have, and let the staff know what kind of dog you're interested in. Once you've gotten that information squared away, the staff member will likely be able to introduce you to dogs who could be a potential match.

In the holding area
As you walk through the holding area where the dogs are kept, you should expect to hear a lot of dog barking, as many of the animals will likely be excited to see an unfamiliar face. Don't let this put you off - barking isn't always a sign of dog aggression.

Some facilities may have an enclosed yard or other area where you can meet with the dogs one-on-one, and this is ideal - it will make it easy for you to get to know the canine without being distracted by other animals.

Meeting the canine
When it comes time to introduce yourself to one of the dogs, make sure you go about the process slowly, and base your interaction on the dog's attitude. Some animals may be very outgoing and run up to you to greet you while others will be more timid. If you are dealing with a shy canine, crouch down so you are at his level and hold out your hand so he can give it a good sniff. This is very much like a "handshake" for dogs, and may help the dog feel more comfortable interacting.


Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

As part of the VCA family, we have over 83 specialty hospitals across the US and Canada which provide referral specialty care, so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: behavior, cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, integrative medicine, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology, rehabilitation, reproduction, and surgery.

Find a VCA Specialty Care Animal Hospital near you:


See all VCA Animal Hospitals >


Emergency Care

Sunrise Veterinary Group is open Monday through Friday 8AM-8PM and on Saturday 8AM-4PM (we are closed on Sunday). If your pet has a medical emergency during our hospital’s hours, please telephone us immediately at 631-661-5380. Our experienced team of veterinarians, technicians and assistants are here to help you and your pet.

Our address is:

Sunrise Veterinary Group
521 Sunrise Highway
West Islip, NY 11795

Please click here for directions to our location.

If your pet is experiencing a medical crisis when our hospital is closed, you may take your pet to either of following 24/7/365 veterinary emergency hospitals in our vicinity:

Veterinary Medical Center of Long Island
75 Sunrise Highway
West Islip, NY 11795
Open 24/7/365

Veterinary Referral & Emergency Center of Westbury
609-5 Cantiague Rock Road
Westbury NY 11590 
Open 24/7/365