UPDATED CORONAVIRUS ADVICE FOR OUR CLIENTS AND SUPPORT FOR THE COMMUNITY – 25 MARCH 2020

Like everyone else, here at Elston Vets we have been constantly reviewing the latest government advice, and have the following update.

FIRSTLY – WE ARE OPEN!

We want to reassure you that providing care for our clients and their pets remains our top priority.

At the same time, human safety and health is paramount now more than ever, and this is impacting how we work.

We are happy to report that currently we are not experiencing any staff shortages, although we have reduced the number of team members present in the practice at any one time.

We fully support the lockdown in the UK, which we are all hoping will help reduce the spread of COVID19 and save lives. As a result of the lockdown,

WE ARE RESTRICTED TO URGENT AND EMERGENCY CARE ONLY.

The service we are able to provide is completely different than anything we have experienced before. This situation requires patience from all of us, and we appreciate your understanding in these unprecedented times.

We are unable to do routine procedures such as neutering or most vaccinations (**waiting for RCVS advice on puppy vaccinations), that are not deemed emergency care. We are rebooking vaccinations for 2-3 months from now, and will monitor the situation which of course is very uncertain at present.

We still believe in preventative care for your pets – and strongly recommend continuing all deworming and flea prevention, which is even more important this time of year.

PLEASE PHONE BEFORE COMING IN. For your protection and ours, we must reduce or eliminate face-to-face contact.

If you believe your pet requires urgent care, we are here to help, the difference now is that we will need to triage and plan ahead as much as possible.

WE CAN OFFER A REMOTE CONSULTATION using our new service of video consultations, using the fantastic tool Petsapp. There will be a charge for video consultations, and hope to go live with them by Friday 27th March or Monday 30th March. Please see more information on this here: 

PetsApp Website-                   https://petsapp.com/   

Elston Vets App Link for clients –https://petsapp.com/elston-veterinary-clinic

IF YOUR PET REQUIRES ATTENDANCE AT OUR PRACTICE, we will ask you to remain outside the practice building for the duration of your visit. We are hugely sympathetic to any concerns you might have about this policy. Please keep in mind the gravity of the current pandemic; we are doing this for your protection as well as our team’s.

  • Do not drive to the practice if you are self-isolating, or are in any way ill. Phone us to discuss, and see further advice in following sections of this document.
  • Please keep your phone on and with you at all times.
  • When you arrive, a vet will phone you to discuss your concerns about your pet’s condition, and take the history from you while avoiding face to face contact.
  • At that point, one of our team will come out to your car and collect your pet; cats in your carrier, or your dog will be taken with one of our leads into the practice.
  • After your pet has been examined, the vet will phone you to discuss the findings and discuss them with you.

For those of our clients confined to their house, we are available for collection (and return!) of your pet should it need to be seen by us. (To local addresses in Shrewton and Orcheston.)

And  – arrangements for dog walking – a chat on the phone….

IF YOU REQUIRE REPEAT MEDICATION, PET FOOD, OR OTHER SUPPLIES, PLEASE PHONE AHEAD.

Deworming medication and flea prevention treatments, which are key this time of year, can be posted to you, which will incur a small fee. HEALTHY PET CLUB MEMBERS WILL NOT INCUR A DELIVERY FEE FOR THOSE ITEMS.

Currently we can deliver items to local addresses in Shrewton and Orcheston if that is helpful to you. This is subject to our team availability; so far we have been able to do this.

We are due to enlist a delivery service soon, please check our Facebook page and website for updates on this.

Alternatively and for larger items, once you have phoned and placed your order with us, and we have notified you that your order is ready for collection, we can continue the system we have had in place, which is – Phone us to let us know when you are arriving, on that phonecall you can pay for your order, then we will leave your order outside for you to collect, weather permitting. Medication will be placed in the green box, and pet food will be placed outside our door just before you arrive.

We are not experiencing any shortages of medication, petfood or supplies, so there is no need to stockpile! So long as everyone refrains from stockpiling, there should be no interruption in our supplies.

We are also concerned to maintain our services for our most vulnerable clients. While we are expecting all of our dear clients to stay healthy, we also think having a plan in place gives great peace of mind. If you are in the category of “vulnerable” (and we appreciate the official guidelines are changing rapidly) please consider taking the following steps.

  • Please make a plan for your pet’s everyday care in the event that you are taken into hospital. This way you can be reassured that you will have nothing to worry about for your pet’s wellbeing.
  • If you live alone, please ensure that there is a friend or family member who has a key to your house, in the event that your pet needs care in your absence.
  • Please share any concerns about your plans with us, we are here to help.
  • Please consult the NHS and government websites for your personal health advice.

In the unlikely event that you are diagnosed positive for the coronavirus:

  • If your pet requires care, wash your hands before and after any interaction with them and wear a face mask if possible.
  • Keep cats indoors if possible and try to arrange for someone else to exercise dogs, taking care to restrict any contact with the person walking your dog and making sure they practice good hygiene. This is to reduce the likelihood of your pet spreading the disease through environmental contamination on their fur – there is no evidence that pet animals play a role in the spread of the disease or that they become sick themselves.
  • If your pet shows clinical signs, please call us for advice.
  • If your pet requires emergency treatment, call us for further advice. Do not take your pet to the surgery yourself. You will need to arrange for someone else to transport your pet for emergency treatment.

Please share this information with others that have pets who may not have access to technology.

Thank you for your patience and taking the time to read this. We will endeavour to provide you and your pet the best possible care during this difficult time. We are thinking of you and your families, and send our love.

Thank you

from the Elston Vets Team