Paws and Claws: Pet Vet is a pet-raising simulation video game in which players can nurse dogs, cats, horses, birds, guinea pigs and rabbits back to health. The game features 20 ailments. Players can design their own clinic, choose which kennels to build and expand existing buildings to provide further services to their patients.
Players assume the role of a veterinarian running a pet clinic and must heal sick pets back to full health. At the beginning of the game, this involves treating smaller pets such as guinea pigs, rabbits, and birds. As the player gains experience, larger animals such as horses, dogs, or cats become available. The clinic's facilities can be expanded and altered (for instance, the style of kennels used to house the animals). Expanding facilities enables more pets to be housed and increases the range of treatments available. Players are also responsible for managing the clinic's finances and supplies.
Each type of pet has a different type of task to be completed in order to heal them. Dogs can play fetch and be taken for a run to increase their fitness and horses can be ridden and taken out to the pasture. The Nintendo DS version utilizes voice recognition via the inbuilt microphone to issue commands to pets as well as to calm them during treatment.
There are six available buildings to construct and expand: the main character's house, the therapy house, the small animal house, the cat house, the dog house, and the horse stalls. In town, there are nine stores to conduct business and train your character. There is the bank, the academy, the food store, the pharmacy, the advertising agency, and the healer practice.
During the game, you learn many things about different diseases and ailments. There are many, including: Fungus Infection, Vitamin E Deficiency, Ear Inflammation, Mold Infection, Rabbit Flu, Lung Infection, Corneal Injury, Liver Infection, Sunburn, Asthma, and Tonsil Infections. Also, as you move on through the game, you get to keep animals in animal houses for prolonged treatment. In the small animal house, you may keep Guinea Pigs, Rabbits, or Birds that have more serious injuries and diseases. When animals are in your animal houses, you must treat them every day and feed them. You are also supposed to complete certain tasks.
The game has a fairly large playing world, in which your playing time is constrained by what time of day it is in-game. The clinic opens and closes at certain times of day, and if you wait too long to service a customer, they will leave the clinic. Patients must be healed in a certain amount of time, and you will not get paid by your customers if you do not heal their animals. If you are not making an income, you cannot care for the animals, which in turn will repeat the cycle and your clinic will go out of business.
In the game play, you assume one of 3 characters: Hanna, Alex or Sophie. As one of these characters, you have many responsibilities to the clinic and the animals you are treating. You can dress you character to work, ride a horse, or leisure. You can also make them walk (arrow keys) or run (shift and an arrow key).
There are many settings including: town, your practice, small animal house, cat house, therapy center, dog house, horse barn, fields and meadows, the forest, the beach, and town outskirts. The fields, meadows, practice, and town are the areas of the world that you do not have to buy. The small animal house, cat house, therapy center, dog house, and horse barn are things that you must buy using the money you receive from helping customers. The forest, beach and town outskirts are things you eventually earn by following the tasks you must complete in the game.
These are the buildings featured in town:
- Pharmacy - This is where you get more medications to treat your patients.
- The Bank - This is where you can receive and payback loans of $1000, $2000, or $3000.
- Food Palace - This is where you get food for your animals and buy/sell horses.
- School Of Learning - This is where you get permits to treat specific types of animals and add types of treatments.
These are some of the different types of medication you can buy in-game:
- Inflammation Ointment
- Healing Salve
- Anti-Parasitic Cream
- Anti-Parasitic Agent
- Tonic Preparation