March 17, 2020
To Our Valued Clients,
As you know, COVID-19 has impacted every aspect of our everyday life, and Eastside Dog and Cat Hospital is no exception. With growing concern over this highly-contagious virus, we want to inform you that we are taking every precaution to ensure your health as well as the health of our staff and your pets. Our goals continue to be to provide the best possible care for our patients while providing safety for all the humans “on the other end of the leash or carrier“. In addition to stringent sanitation practices, we have implemented several policies in order to keep everyone safe while continuing to provide excellent medical care. These policies are effective immediately. We will continue to keep you posted as this evolves.
*WE WILL NO LONGER ALLOW CLIENTS OR NON-STAFF PERSONNEL INTO OUR HOSPITAL SO THAT WE MAY COMPLY WITH THE SOCIAL DISTANCING RULE OF MAINTAINING SIX FEET BETWEEN PEOPLE. (See below for more information.)
*We will not offer boarding services for the next two months.
*We will continue to offer grooming services.
*For now, we will be closed on Thursdays and Sundays.
*All elective surgeries (surgeries that are non life-threatening) are postponed to help conserve personal protection equipment which may be needed for the human personnel on the front line of COVID-19.
* If you need to pick up food or medication, please call ahead so we can prepare your items. When you arrive, simply call us from the car and we will bring the items to you or meet you at the door. Consider this to be our curbside service!
*If possible, we ask that all payments be made via credit card over the phone (see below) or if absolutely needed, check or exact amount cash.
*If you do not have a cell phone, please let us know ahead of time so we can make other arrangements.
*If you are ill, please send someone else with your pet to the clinic. If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and your pet is ill, please contact us before bringing your pet to the clinic.
*We are exploring the possibility of implementing telemedicine to help treat your pets from the comfort of your home.
*Please consider post-poning well/vaccine visits for healthy, well vaccinated, adult dogs. The only exception is the Rabies vaccine. It needs to be current as this poses a human health risk.
When you arrive, please call the clinic (440.729.0500) from your car. We will take your pet’s pertinent medical information over the phone. A staff member will then meet you at the entrance door to the clinic, where you will hand the leash or carrier to the staff member. We ask that you then return to your car. One of our Doctors will examine your pet and call you to discuss appropriate treatment plans and one of our receptionists will process your payment over the phone. We will then meet you at the exit door with your pet and any necessary medications.
We know that, for many of our patients, being able to be stay with you is a huge component of managing your pet’s potential anxiety and fear within the clinic. We also recognize that many of our patients come to Eastside because of the Low Stress/Fear Free approach which is such an important part of our hospital. However, most examinations done with you present require close physical proximity with you and our personnel. Thus, it becomes impossible to enforce the “maintain 6 feet between people” social distancing safety rule. Rest assured that we will continue to treat your pet with the same low stress/fear-free handling techniques that you have always witnessed in the exam room. Although there may be exceptions, the majority of our physical exams and diagnostic will, for the time being, occur without you present.
If your pet has high anxiety within the clinic, please call us to discuss your concerns. We may prescribe anti-anxiety medication to be given prior to the exam. We may also discuss whether the appointment, if non urgent, can wait until a later date.
Here are some other points to remember from the American Veterinary Medicine Association:
- Infectious disease experts and multiple international and domestic human and animal health organizations agree there is no evidence at this point to indicate that pets become ill with COVID-19 or that they spread it to other animals, including people.
- If you are not ill with COVID-19, you can interact with your pet as you normally would, including walking, feeding, and playing. You should continue to practice good hygiene during those interactions (e.g., wash hands before and after interacting with your pet; ensure your pet is kept well-groomed; regularly clean your pet’s food and water bowls, bedding material, and toys).
- Out of an abundance of caution, it is recommended that those ill with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus. Have another member of your household take care of walking, feeding, and playing with your pet. If you have a service animal or you must care for your pet, wear a facemask; don’t share food, kiss, or hug them; and wash your hands before and after any contact with them.
If you have further concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will keep you posted, as this situation is changing on a daily basis. As always, we are here for you ”To Provide Compassionate Care for the Pets You Love, One Pet at a Time”.
The Staff at Eastside Dog and Cat Hospital