At The Strand Vet, the health, safety and well-being of our patients, our staff and our community are paramount.
Veterinary services are considered essential services, so we will remain open during the Level 4 lockdown for COVID-19. To help us stay fully operational, we ask the following:
WAITING AREA IS CLOSED, BUT WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS
We are very pleased to be able to offer phone and video consulting to our clients for most conditions from our team working from home. You can book this online or call our reception on (09) 377 6667 and leave a message. We will send you all the information you need to set this up on your end.
If your pet needs is deemed an urgent case and needs to see us in person for a physical exam and further diagnostics, we have one team on the ground daily in the clinic and ready to help.
NEW PROCESS FOR IN-CLINIC APPOINTMENTS
- Please prepare in advance. Call for an appointment and bring your pets in a cage or on a lead.
- On arrival, please stay in your car.
- Call reception 09 377 6667 for contactless handover.
- A nurse will come to collect your pet. Our fear-free approach is still in practice. We will always make sure we look after your pet with our normal TSV comforts.
- Our vet will start the consult by calling you for history and to discuss the plan of treatment.
- Your pet is delivered back to you outside for pick up.
Admissions to hospital
- If your pet is to be admitted to stay with us, we’ll admit them as described above
- As we have always done, we will send your pet home with a comprehensive discharge form, but instead of speaking to a vet in person we will have a discharge consultation via the phone.
IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY
Please call us before arriving so we can give you instructions as there will be no exceptions to following our Health and Safety protocols to ensure the health of our team – if your pet needs to be lifted (and you are unable to do by yourself) please ensure you have help.
FOR SELF ISOLATION OR UNWELL CLIENTS
If you are sick, have returned from travel in the last 14 days or are displaying any upper respiratory symptoms, we respectfully ask you to not come to come to the clinic. Please contact us if you require urgent vet care, and we can discuss your options.
OTHER IMPORTANT CHANGES:
- We have put extra hygiene practices in place; all clinic areas are thoroughly cleaned with a disinfectant that effectively inactivates COVID-19.
- Call us for initial advice, and we will guide you from there.
- We encourage over the phone payments.
- We require all consults to be booked in advance.
- For pets with minor health issues and ongoing medical conditions, we have an online and phone consultation option available.
- Medications and parasite control can be couriered to you free of charge. Food can also be couriered for a small fee.
- If you need to collect food or medication directly from us, then please call ahead. We will take payment in advance and organise for collection outside of the clinic in a drop box.
- Your pet’s preventative health checks and vaccinations are important for your pet but as Essential Services means animal welfare case only, our team will rebook you for May and talk over any concerns (Puppy and Kittens exempt)
According to the Ministry of Health, the chance of widespread community outbreak of COVID-19 is expected to remain low. Here’s some information to help you understand the risks as they relate to your pets.
Can animals catch coronavirus?
Highly unlikely. There is no strong evidence that animals can spread coronavirus to humans based on research and studying the current epidemiologic data. It also looks to be highly unlikely an animal can act as a fomite (passive carrier) as the virus does not like fur. However, a person with COVID-19 may sneeze or shed the virus onto a surface or inanimate object eg: collar or lead, so we do still recommend social distancing and staying in your family ‘bubble’.
As veterinarians we are taking more precautions with personal protective equipment when dealing with patients, and have procedures in place should your animals get sick however this is the same as them being more careful about contact with surfaces that may have been contaminated. The virus has shown to be hardy enough to stay on surfaces for 24-72 hours.
What about that dog in Hong Kong?
In late February a dog was tested and the results showed a “weak positive” for coronavirus. The next set of blood tests done on the dog have tested negative. At the moment it is not showing any clinical signs. The second dog testing positive was proved to be due to colonisation (living in close contact with Covid-19 positive owner over a long period of time). This is emerging data so we still don’t know exactly all this means but it is believed this may be a case of a human transmitting the disease to a dog (and not the other way round. Be mindful of this and practice adequate hygiene and self isolation away from your family pet should you get the virus. There is still no evidence of animals posing a risk of spreading coronavirus.
What should I do to protect my animal?
At this stage, the best thing you can do is practice good hygiene. The risk of your animal catching coronavirus is very low and there is no evidence that it could give it to you. However, it’s always a good idea to wash your hands with soap and water after contact with animals. Giving your dog a good bath once a week while you have time would be a great tip too – soapy shampoos are effective so don’t use any other products on coats as then you will end up at the vet!
What should I do if my animal gets sick?
As always, talk to our team and follow the advice we give. It is imperative you ring us first, particularly if you are unwell, have been in contact with someone who is unwell, have travelled in the last 14 days as we are now all self isolating/social distancing. It may be best to arrange for someone else to take your animal to the vet if it needs to be seen so that you can remain isolated.
What should I do for my animal if someone in my home gets coronavirus or is in isolation?
If you or someone in your home is waiting for a test result, the same process applies for animals as human members of the household.
If the person in isolation has not had close contact with the animal during the isolation period or the 2 weeks before that, they should try to minimise their contact with it and other household members. If possible, find someone who is well and not in isolation to help care for the animal. If the isolated person has to do it, they should wash their hands before and after contact as we want to make sure we look after our precious companions.