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What to expect at the clinic and changes to the way we work
- We are still no longer able to accommodate home visits unless they are absolutely unavoidable, or deemed by us to be in some way detrimental to an animal’s welfare by not doing so.
- We are continuing to operate a ‘closed door’ policy. This means no clients will be entering the practice, except in very exceptional circumstances. You will be asked to call us upon your arrival; a member of staff will collect your pet from the predetermined location (discussion to be had on the phone based on the circumstances) and will be taken inside to be examined in the practice, 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). Puppies are to be placed in the red wire basket on the bench by the front door for smaller puppies (please make sure you replace the red wire pin that secures your puppy in the basket before returning to your car) or for larger puppies, please put them in the crate located on the astroturf portion of our walk in kennel attached to the rear of our building. For dogs (apart from unvaccinated puppies), one of our staff members will advise you of the most appropriate hand over procedure, most likely using one of the numbered kennels at the rear of the practice. Please note that there is a one way system in place around the practice – please head to the left as you look at the front door, round past the bins, drop off your dog in the kennel number specified and continue in the same direction (do not turn back the way you came) to come all the way around the practice and back to your car. There is sterilium hand gel attached to the kennel opposite the numbered kennels where you will have dropped your dog off.
- 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. You should not travel to the clinic if you have covid symptoms, are self isolating or have tested positive until such a time as your isolation period has ended or your results come back as negative.
- 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). Please note that bank transfers are usually not appropriate for same day treatments as they may take up to a couple of days to clear. Receipts can be emailed to you upon request.
- There is currently no shortage of medications, even despite brexit. 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 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 2 metres between individuals wherever possible (even outside) so please wait for us to return back into the practice before you collect your medications as well as making sure you ideally stay 2 metres away from other members of the public (even if you are wearing a mask).
- Due to school closures, it may mean the practice is 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
The good news is that we are able to offer an array of treatments that are deemed to be needed within the remit of a 6 week lockdown to prevent suffering or welfare issues. We are still offering telephone consultations for those clients that want them and will continue to be able to remote prescribe if we feel appropriate in those circumstances. If you opt to have a telephone consult (and not bring your pet into the clinic in the first instance) then we would ask that you send any pictures or videos that might be relevant over to email@example.com prior to your pre-booked telephone consultation. If a physical examination is deemed to be necessary then an exam that day or the next working day (where a same day exam is not feasible) will not have an additional charge.
- Primary vaccination courses and 1st year annual boosters (pets around 15 months of age) are for the most part ok to be scheduled (subject to not putting us or you at any unnecessary risk).
- All other vaccinations will be down to our clinical judgement and we plan to have these discussions with you individually so please respect our risk assessment made as to what’s right for you and your pets (see the section below on vaccinations for more details regarding timings).
- Individual circumstances will be considered regarding neutering – this is not business as usual so please understand that if your circumstances are particularly challenging (mixed sex young rabbits, young cats that you cannot keep indoors or again mixed sex pairs etc) then we will consider the merits on an individual basis.
- For any appointments where you are concerned about your pet being unwell or injured then please call us on 01285 861090. Alternatively you can book an appointment online at https://cotswoldvets.co.uk/appointments/ if your concern is less urgent.
- Some non urgent appointments like nail clips and expressing anal glands are for the most part not able to be scheduled. Obviously if your pet was suffering such as with an ingrown nail or blocked/infected anal glands or is prone to recurrent anal gland infections then delaying may cause unnecessary suffering and so these decisions are being made on a case by case basis.
Please also consider whether, if you were stopped by the police whilst travelling to/from the practice, the reason for your journey would seem justifiable to them as we cannot take responsibility for any fines imposed on you by the police or their interpretation of the current government guidelines.
Should I have my pet vaccinated?
Cats – If part of their initial kitten vaccines or the first annual vaccinations (when they are approximately 15 months old) then yes for the most part as we only have one month lee way before their vaccine course would need to be re-started. 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.
Dogs – If part of their initial puppy vaccines or the first annual vaccinations (when they are approximately 15 months old) then yes for the most part as we only have one month lee way before their vaccine course would need to be re-started. We have a 3 month safety net for adult vaccinations in most circumstances, but feel free to contact us for further advice on an individual basis. Rabies vaccines and animal health certificates can be scheduled as needed, please see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/pet-travel-to-europe-from-1-january-2021 for more information regarding requirements or give us a call and we can advise you further.
Rabbits – All vaccines going ahead so please get in touch for individual timings and whether these are needed during lockdown.
Thank you for your understanding at this difficult time for all of us.
All the team at Cotswold Vets