Elaine Feldman, 54, co-owns Cross River Pharmacy with her husband Stuart.
The store is located in the heart of the Cross River Shopping Plaza and caters mostly to people. However, since the couple bought the store in 1995, they have attracted some unexpected customers, pets. Although the animals brought in include the usual suspects such as cats and dogs, other, more unusual critters such as a bearded dragon, wolves and a sugar glider, which is a small gliding possum have turned up from time to time.
Treatment includes medicine given for regular ailments to those to treat injury, both minor and severe. Feldman recalled how Fang, her own pet coral snake, was treated for a burn after it escaped and slithered under her refrigerator.
Despite the store treating man as well as beast, Feldman is unhappy that it has to face the same problems more orthodox pharmacies do.“We try to fight for better reimbursements,” Feldman said. “Insurance companies want to pay literally zero.”
The business itself predates the Feldmans’ ownership, with the Cross River Pharmacy first opening its doors in 1971. Lasting through multiple recessions, Feldman thought she was fortunate enough to avoid the 2008 recession, but that did not last long.“The recession hit everybody else,” Feldman said. “[Then] it trickled down to this area.”On the other hand, the recession has forced Feldman and her employees to become more resourceful. For instance, once the nearby toy store Try and Buy closed in 2008, pharmacy store manager Linda Iamcomini, 57 helped the store stock up on toys to pick up customers. “We built the store up to make it convenient,” Iacomini said. “[Before] it was more of a drug store…we made it a bigger store.”
Where do you take your exotic pets for treatment and medication?