COVID-19 FAQ:

Updated on the 9th of May.


In this difficult and unprecedented situation, we are trying our best to keep supporting you and your pet.
Please find below a list of FAQs to help answer the concerns you might have.

We politely ask you to leave our phone lines as free as possible so emergencies callers can reach us.

Does the lockdown affect you?

While we have a duty of care for our patients and an obligation to provide emergency treatment and analgesia, we also must play our part in the fight against COVID-19 for the safety of our staff, our community and our nhs.

We are a regulated profession and follow updates and guidance from the RCVS (Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, our regulating body), BSAVA (British Small Animal Veterinary Association), the BVA (British Veterinary Association) and other veterinary organisations working closely with the government.

Practically, this means we must discourage our clients to leave their home unless they are faced with a genuine emergency for their pet.

We will only see emergency cases, fulfil urgent prescriptions and maintain the food supply for your pet.

We are organising remote services for any other queries you might have.

Are you going to remain open?

Like every business, we have had to take drastic measures to survive in the current crisis, retain jobs and still be there to help you when things settle.

We remain open for emergencies while following clear restrictive guidelines from the government and the RCVS.

We are of course also facing significant staffing issues through our staff being vulnerable individuals, in self-isolation or poorly and via financial obligations to operate on reduced staff. We are trying our best to still offer you and your pets the standard of care we strive for in a situation changing on a daily basis.

Many of our fellow vet practices have had to close.

We are grateful for your understanding and your patience during this time. Our focus is on delivering the best care to our emergency patients and ensuring continuity of care remotely for the non-urgent cases.

You might experience difficulties getting through to us on the phone as our lines are very busy. Waiting times when needing to be seen might also be increased due to the unpredictable nature of emergency work. Finally you might be faced with delays to receive posted medications. Please take this into consideration when requesting services.

We are also faced with medicines shortages and delayed deliveries. Please increased the notice you give us for repeat medication order to avoid running out of medications.

For enquiries such as insurance claim processing and complaints, our teams are working as hard as they can to answer you. Again, you might see delays in our usual turn-over times. Remember all processes have dramatically changed as we operate with a reduced staffing level and introduced home working where possible. As a result people might not be contactable as easily or different team members might be involved in dealing with you.

Some of our staff are furloughed and you might not be able to communicate or see the person you are used to. We would ask you not to make request to a specific member of the team as our staffing is changing daily. Instead, send enquiries to reception@wylievets.com and it will be dispatch to the best person currently available to reply.

Finally, the nature of our work makes social distancing very difficult, even with a skeleton team. Despite the risks, our staff are just as committed to care for their patients and be as professional as ever. We are immensely proud of the work they are doing every day. We ask you respect the social distancing measures we have put in place for the safety of our staff and our clients.

Are pet affected by COVID-19?

There is no evidence that domestic pets are affected by Covid-19.

They might carry the virus on their coat from being stroked by affected people. Pets therefore work as fomites. We advise you do follow usual hygiene procedures and wash your hands in the recommended fashion before and after handling your pet or someone else's. We also recommend to avoid been licked by your pet.

Cats do not need to be kept indoors to avoid transmission of the virus unless they belong to an affected household. Please find the statement from the BVA regarding this here: https://www.bva.co.uk/news-and-blog/news-article/bva-statement-on-cats-and-covid-19/?fbclid=IwAR2Kr5qvCxfGp6ddq0_kLcfUvJ0pj3hkFKD80K5dqPQoDJvdFhRi5JgAt7A

I need to book an appointment. What should I do?

We are only seeing emergency appointments. We will offer you a video consultation for non-urgent problems. The vet might be able to prescribe medication or use the video as triage and book your pet to be examined if it is deemed necessary.

Find below a list of genuine emergencies for which you can come in straight away. Please always call us first so we can prepare:

. Collapse

. Seizures

. Difficulties to breathe

. trauma such as road traffic accident, dog attacks causing significant wounds

. Inability to walk

. Persistent frequent vomiting > 6-8 times in a day

. inability to pass urine

. Repeated unproductive attempts to be sick

. Haemorrhages

I need to book my pet for a surgery/procedure. What should I do?

We have had to cancel or delay non urgent surgeries and procedures.

If you wish to discuss any treatment your pet might need, we can offer you a video consultation.

We are keeping a waiting list for non-urgent procedures so we can contact you and book you in when it is possible.

Following new guidelines from the RCVS & BVA from the 14th of April, we have adjusted our service to offer essential vaccination and neutering.

Our role in the fight against Covid remains just as important and we must still discourage our clients to make any non-essential journey to our premises.

However, the lockdown and restrictions will be in place for a long time: weeks, possibly months. Our duty to animal welfare also remains and our governing body acknowledged that some procedures could not be delayed for too long without impacting animal welfare.

This includes vaccinations to avoid outbreaks of deadly diseases in our pet population. It also might apply to neutering in certain rare circumstances.

Please read the BSAVA advice for pet owners on these two services:

https://www.bsava.com/Portals/0/resources/documents/vaccination-guide-pf.pdf?ver=2020-04-23-163829-607

https://www.bsava.com/Portals/0/resources/documents/neutering-guide-pf.pdf?ver=2020-04-23-163821-027

Our focus, when reintroducing vaccinations, will be to ensure social distancing and maximum safety for our staff and our clients.

We will offer vaccination service from our Brentwood Wellness Centre only.

We will ask for your patience with the process as we are still functioning on a skeleton team and at reduced capacity.

We will prioritise primo-vaccination (first and second puppy injection as well as first year booster) as these are the most vulnerable individuals. For other group, we will operate a risk assessment to identify animals at particular risk.

The veterinary associations have worked closely with vaccine manufacturers and recommended that in the current situation, booster could be delayed up to 15months.

We will send reminders to clients accordingly.

These new guidelines are in place for a rolling 2 months.

Why will you offer vaccination only from your Brentwood Wellness Centre?

First of all our Wellness Centre was open precisely to look after healthy animal.

We do not operate, nor hospitalise there. No poorly pet has been seen there for nearly 3 months. It is therefore the safest place to bring naive/unvaccinated animals.

We do not want to mix naive/unvaccinated animals with the poorly/potentially infectious animals we see at our Upminster hospital at a time we have delayed vaccinations and while social distancing makes handing over pets more complicated.

At our Wellness Centre, we will be able to offer a safe system to hand over your puppy/pet/bunny without contact, in a gated area to ensure social distancing is respected.

The safety of our staff and yours is paramount. Please, be prepared to transfer your pet(s) into a carrier we can safely lift or to place them on the floor depending on their weight. We will not take pets from your arms.

One vet will be dedicated to the vaccinations and will have not handled any poorly pet that day.

Payment will be taken over the phone. Sign up to our plans done remotely.

I am a breeder. I have puppies ready to go to new owners who have not been vaccinated yet. What should I do?

You can call our Brentwood Wellness Centre on 01277 584470 to book an appointment. The process will be explained to you.

Please remember that we will not issues vaccine certificates to non-identified pups.

It is a legal requirement that all pups are microchipped at 8 weeks.

Should you need us to microchip the pups at the time, please let us know.

My puppy/kitten was/is due his first or second vaccination. Can I bring him/her?

You can book puppy/kitten primo-vaccination here : https://www.wylievets.com/book-a-video-consultation

Alternatively you can call our Brentwood Wellness Centre on 01277 584470 to book an appointment. The process will be explained to you.

My rabbit is due its vaccination. Can I bring him/her in?

Due to the seasonal nature of the deadly viruses affecting rabbits, their vaccination is deemed essential at this time of the year.

You can call our Brentwood Wellness Centre on 01277 584470 to book an appointment. The process will be explained to you.

My pet is due his/her yearly booster soon. Can I bring him/her for this? If not will he/she still be protected?

Booster vaccinations are not considered emergency appointments.

The veterinary associations have worked closely with vaccine manufacturers and recommended that in the current situation, booster could be delayed up to 15months without concerns for their protection. Please find the BSAVA advice for pet owners below:

https://www.bsava.com/Portals/0/resources/documents/vaccination-guide-pf.pdf?ver=2020-04-23-163829-607

We will send reminders accordingly. If your pet has been vaccinated 15 months or more ago and you have not received a reminder, please contact us on 01277 584470.

Some individuals are more at risk of being exposed to certain diseases. We will perform a risk assessment in order to identify them and book them at the appropriate time.

We ask your patience with this process as we will focus on the most vulnerable cases first. Please answer truthfully to the questions from our receptionists regarding your pet's circumstances so we can ensure all of our patients are seen when they should.

Depending on your pet's circumstances, the vet will decide what is the best vaccination protocol for him/her.

You might incur extra cost if a second injection was necessary.

If you are a WHC/TCP member, cost of all necessary injection will be included in the plans.


Can I book a nurse appointment?

Nurse clinics are cancelled including community nursing.

Triaging of emergencies by nurses will still occur as well as absolutely necessary appointments such as bandage changes.

We are offering video  and telephone nurse clinics when possible.

If you need reassurance or have recently lost a pet, please do not hesitate to book a nurse video/phone appointment.

If you need nutrition advice, please book a nurse video/phone appointment.

If you need behavioural advice, please book a video/phone appointment with our qualified behaviourist / veterinary nurse, Nicky. The cost for this service is £30. It might be particularly useful for advice on how to manage puppies in their socialisation period during lockdown.

My dog is on TCP/WHC. Will I still get my 6month check and flea/worming treatments?

We will not organise 6 month health checks at the moment and will discourage you to collect non-essential medicines from us.

For a small postage charge, we can however post your flea/worming treatment if they are due.

Please call us to let us know you need them or email dispensary@wylievets.com

My animal needs a check for repeat prescription. What should I do?

Our prescribing obligations to monitor animals under our care remain. We are offering video consultation to fulfil them as best as we can and be able to prescribe you the drugs your pet needs.

While we won't be able to examine your pet, we can discuss effects, side-effects and make the best decision for your pet's treatment with you.

The RCVS has temporarily relaxed its prescribing rules to allow veterinary surgeon to exceptionally prescribe medications remotely (without complete physical examination) following remote mean of consultation.

Please book a video consultation here: https://www.wylievets.com/book-a-video-consultation

I need to collect medications for my pet. What should I do?

Call the surgery to order your medications as usual. You can also email your request to dispensary@wylievets.com.

We are experiencing drug shortages and delayed deliveries. Like all businesses, our suppliers are short-staffed, particularly when it comes to drivers.

Please give us a bit more notice than usual to avoid your pet running out of medications.

My pet is poorly but it's not an emergency. What should I do?

Please book a video consultation and we will try our best to help, potentially prescribe medication that would be safe in the situation.

https://www.wylievets.com/book-a-video-consultation

This could apply to:

- skin issues
- recurring problems
- lumps and bumps

- finding alternative to injectable medicine we are unable to administer if you can not come to us

- mild condition which might require medications but no investigation (uncomplicated vomiting or diarrhoea, mild lameness, small wound, eye disease..)
- follow up of treatments instated recently

- Any discussion regarding change of medication & doses

During the video consultation, should the vet deemed a physical examination of your pet necessary to establish the best course of action for his/her condition, you will be invited to visit our Upminster hospital at a specific time. You will not be charged a consultation again but just a top up fee of £10 to cover our usual consultation fee.

How does the video consultation service work? How do I book a video consultation?

In order to ensure continuity of treatment and be able to support you and your pets with non-emergency concerns, we have organised a video consultation service. This has required some IT resources as well as research into a safe, GDPR compliant system. The time slot allocated has been doubled compare to our usual 15min consultation to allow for technical issues and liaising with staff onsite to take payment, prepare drugs and organise what might be needed following the consultation.

We of course recognise this service can't match a real consultation with complete physical examination and are offering it at a reduce price compare to our usual consultation (£49.50).

You can book from our website or by phone (our lines are rather overwhelmed at the moment).

The fee for video consultations is £39.50 and we ask for prepayment to secure the slot. Number of slots are limited by our current staff level and we want to discourage the number of missed appointments we normally see.

One of our receptionists will call you for payment and verify your current email.

You will then receive a link by email. At the time of the consultation, use the link to connect to the video stream with the vet or nurse.

If you want to show us something on your animal, make sure you are in a well lit environment. Familiarise yourself with your camera and its bidirectional option. Should you want to email us a picture prior to the appointment for the vet to look at, please use reception@wylievets.com.

Do follow instructions regarding browser type and browser update for your device as well as settings to allow your device to use the microphone and the camera. These will be sent to you with the link.

During the video consultation, should the vet deemed a physical examination of your pet necessary to establish the best course of action for his/her condition, you will be invited to visit our Upminster hospital at a specific time. You will not be charged a consultation again but just a top up fee of £10 to cover our usual consultation fee in full.

What service can nurses offer by video consultation?

- post op checks
- nutrition advice
- behaviour advice from our qualified behaviourist / nurse (£30 consultation fee)
- bereavement support

I need some food for my pet. Can I come and collect it?

We have organised a safe and non-contact order & collect service from our Wellness Centre.

We are stocking more brands, including Natural instinct and have much bigger stock at our Wellness centre to cater for all our patients.

Please click here for details: food collection

My pet is on TCP/WHC. Can I come and get my raw food?

Yes. We have organised a non-contact order collection.

Please visit our food order page for details: food collection

I need a written prescription, can I come in?

By nature, written prescription are not for urgent medications and do not justify a visit to be collected in lockdown time. Pharmacies (online or not) will accept only original prescription from you or emailed certified version from us.

Pharmacies will not accept prescription by email from you. This is part of fraud prevention procedures. We will therefore not email prescriptions to you.

Let us know which pharmacy you intent to use as well as their email address when you order your drugs and we will email the prescription directly to the pharmacy.

You can ask for a repeat of a written prescription by email dispensary@wylievets.com.

What services are you not offering at the moment?

We are unfortunately unable to offer non-emergency services such as:

. Laser treatment

. Acupuncture

. Healthy 6 months checks (WHC and TCP)

. clip nails

. grooming services

. weight clinics

Wherever possible, we are offering a remote alternative.

Are you offering visits?

For the safety of our staff and our clients, we can not offer visits during the lockdown period.

Can I have my pet groomed at the Wylie Style Salon?

Unfortunately, the salon is closed at the moment.

Suzy, our grooming consultant is offering brilliant advice and videos on facebook to help you to keep your pet coat and nails in the best shape through the closure.

Please follow the salon's facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/wyliestyled/?ref=br_rs

As soon as the salon can safely reopen, we will inform our clients and work our way through a long waiting list. If you want your name to be added, please call the Wellness centre on 01277 584470.

My pet is insured. In current financial strains, can I organise a direct claim?

We have a team of administrators processing insurance claims for our clients. They are working remotely currently and still trying their best to ensure quick turn-around for you to be refunded as quickly as possible.

Direct claims can be organised providing we obtain pre-authorisation from your insurer. We are always happy to do this if the timing of the treatment allows it.

Some insurance companies might not offer a direct claim option in the current times. This is out of our control.

My pet needs to be euthanised. Can I come in with him/her?

Unfortunately we cannot let you in the building at this time of lockdown.

Performing euthanasia in the usual way is not compatible with the current social distancing rules.

This situation is just as heartbreaking for us as it is for you.

We can give you as much time as you need to say your last goodbye but will need to take your pet into the building to proceed with the euthanasia.

What happens once we take your pet?

We will place a catheter in his/her front limb, just like when they come for a procedure/operation.

We will use a quiet and comfortable room and a vet and a nurse will be with your pet giving him/her plenty of reassurance and cuddles.

The injection is an anaesthetic and your pet will fall asleep within a few seconds, just like when they are anaesthetised for an operation or a procedure.

We will endeavour to do this in the most caring and sensitive way as possible.

If your pet is hospitalise and the circumstances allow it, we will organise for you to visit your pet on the grass area to give you time to say goodbye.

We realise this might be upsetting and we have a team of bereavement counsellors you can contact for a chat.