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What to expect at the clinic and changes to the way we work

– We are no longer able to accommodate home visits unless they are unavoidable, or deemed by us to be in some way detrimental to an animal’s welfare.

– We are still operating a ‘closed door’ policy and sadly will be doing so for the foreseeable future. This means no clients will be entering the practice, except in very exceptional circumstances. You will be asked to call us upon your arrival and if your pet is coming in for an examination then we will give you instructions as to handover procedures, with any handling or restraint aided by our trained staff. We understand you may find this distressing, but we can assure you that your pet will be treated, as always, as if he/she is one of our own.

– Cat baskets are to be left on the bench by the front door and will be collected once you have returned to your car (it is your responsibility to make sure that your cat or kitten is secure in the basket before leaving them). Small puppies are to be placed in the red wire basket on the bench by the front door – please make sure you replace the red wire pin that secures your puppy in the basket before returning to your car. For dogs (or larger puppies), please go to the rear of the building where you will see an outdoor run attached to the building and a bank of kennels numbered 1 to 4. When you call on your arrival, we will let you know which of these to put your dog in, then please remove their lead (take the lead with you) and close the door (making sure it has latched properly when you close it) and we will subsequently collect your dog when we are ready for them (they will not be waiting in the kennels for long).

– If you, or someone in your household has been unwell recently (this includes anyone that is self isolating), we kindly ask that you arrange for someone else to bring your pet to us. If this is not possible, please call us on 01285 861090 to discuss appropriate action.

– We are asking all clients to pay for treatments, food orders and prescriptions over the phone using a debit or credit card or by bank transfer if the former is not an option (please ask us for bank details to be sent to you via e-mail and once cleared funds have been confirmed then we will let you know that medications etc can be collected). Receipts can be emailed to you upon request.

– There is currently no shortage of medications. We ask that you call to arrange repeat prescriptions, and provide at least 24 hours’ notice. As per the ‘closed door’ policy, when you come to collect orders, please call us upon your arrival and we will put your package to collect on top of the plastic box by the front door. Please respect that we are abiding by social-distancing protocols and this involves maintaining a distance of ideally 2 meters between individuals so please wait for us to return back into the practice before you collect your medications and wait for other members of the public to clear the space before you jump in.

– During this time, the practice is still operating on fewer staff than normal so please bear with us as we do our very best to care for your pets.

Work we can do and work we can’t

Fortunately the regulations have eased somewhat on what we are allowed to do and what we aren’t. That means that we are playing catch up on 3 months’ worth of missed vaccinations, neuterings, dentals etc. We will do our utmost to fit you in when we can, but please appreciate that because of this (and the fact that every appointment takes twice as long with phone conversations, payments etc), we have somewhat reduced availability and you may also have to wait a little longer than we would like in normal times. Please allow at least 30 minutes even for the most simple of appointments, but up to an hour for more complicated ones. We appreciate that some clients may choose to wait for annual vaccinations if they have a nervous pet where they would prefer to be with them during the appointment (please see guidelines below as to timings of vaccinations and when they are ‘overdue’), but at the moment we cannot see the situation changing until social distancing is over and/or the track and trace scheme ends.

Should I have my pet vaccinated (and when will they be overdue)?

Cats – We can now see all cats for their vaccinations. In terms of deadlines… for first annual vaccinations (when they are approximately 15 months old) then we need to see them ideally before 13 months has elapsed since the last vaccination, or otherwise you will need to re-start the vaccination course. For adult cats (2 and over), we have a 3 month safety net for vaccinations being overdue (suffice the initial course and 1st annual vaccinations have been given in accordance with guidelines) and so a booster vaccination can be given without the course needing to be re-started if it’s given within 15 months’ of the last one. For kittens 9 weeks or older (which is the same for adult re-starts), it’s 2 injections 3-4 weeks apart.

Dogs – We can now see all dogs for their vaccinations. In terms of deadlines… for first annual vaccinations (when they are approximately 15 months old) then we need to see them ideally before 13 months has elapsed since the last vaccination, or otherwise you will need to re-start the vaccination course. For adult dogs (2 and over), we have a 3 month safety net for vaccinations being overdue (suffice the initial course and 1st annual vaccinations have been given in accordance with guidelines) and so a booster vaccination can be given without the course needing to be re-started if it’s given within 15 months’ of the last one. For puppies 6 weeks or older (which is the same for adult re-starts), it’s 2 injections 4-6 weeks apart. All kennel cough vaccinations are being discussed on a risk/benefit basis as theoretically giving a live attenuated vaccine could add to any respiratory compromise in the event of you or a family member catching Covid-19 in the 6 weeks post vaccination. Rabies vaccinations are now available and we are happy to discuss the current regulations for travel (which will change at the end of December).

Rabbits – All vaccines are going ahead due to the ongoing risks of myxomatosis and RHD/RHD2. Please call us to discuss your individual requirements.

Thank you for your understanding at this difficult time for all of us.

Kindest Regards,
All the team at Cotswold Vets