The state has confirmed that veterinary health services are an Essential Business. Accordingly, the Red Roof Fort Lee Animal Hospital will continue to provide veterinary care to companion animals during the COVID-19 outbreak. We are following all recommendations to ensure the safety of our clients and staff.
What is the RED ROOF VET doing to protect patients, clients, and staff from COVID-19?
Your family and pet’s wellbeing is very important to us.
During this time, “SICK” pets have a priority to see a doctor.
- We have prepared options to assist our pet patients such as a “Telemedicine”, “Medicine Home Delivery” for your pet per Dr. Kim’s discretion.
- If you want to make an appointment for your pet’s preventive care (e.g. wellness exam, vaccinations, any elective procedures) please communicate with our medical team first.
- Only ONE asymptomatic person per pet visit is allowed when coming in to see a doctor.
- If you are not feeling well, please let us know when you schedule the appointment over the phone prior to the actual visit. Our call assistant is on standby to schedule the appointments for sick pet owners who need to stay home, and appointments for pet owners who have traveled to any CDC Level 3 or higher country in the last 14 days.
- We are only permitting ONE person per patient visit. If you are allowed into the waiting area, we ask that you use social distancing of 6 feet (e.g. 1.8 meters). We prefer that you stay in the examination room with your pet(s).
- If a pet needs to be in the hospital for one or more hours for diagnostic tests on the day of their appointment, the client can leave the pet with our medical staff. We recommend the “DROP-OFF service” your pets.
- We encourage you to prepare TWO weeks of pet foods or medications if your pet is on any on-going treatments.
- Our office opens at 9 a.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Closing time may be changed depending on the situation. Please give us a call prior to the visit.
Can COVID-19 infect companion animals?
Short Answer: It’s possible but rare.
Two dogs in Hong Kong have tested “weakly positive” for COVID-19 (one on February 26th and one on March 19th), suggesting that human-to-animal transmission might be possible. However, neither dog has shown clinical signs of infection. Both dogs’ owners had previously tested positive for COVID-19, and it’s believed the dogs’ infection came from the owner.
Human health and veterinary professionals are monitoring these cases and the possibility of human-to-animal transmission closely. Subsequent testing by IDEXX Laboratories has found no positive results in thousands of canine and feline specimens. “These new test results align with the current expert understanding that COVID-19 is primarily transmitted person-to-person,” IDEXX Laboratories said in a statement.
As a precaution with any infectious disease, infected humans should isolate themselves from their pets as they would with any other family member and follow the hygiene and preventive measures described below.
Can COVID-19 be transmitted by companion animals?
Short Answer: It’s highly unlikely.
At this point, there is no evidence that COVID-19 can spread from an infected companion animal to a human. Even as a passive carrier of the disease (e.g., if you’re dog’s fur, is contaminated after playing with an infected person), it is very unlikely that your pet will transmit COVID-19.
However, as a precaution against all infectious diseases, regular hand washing and good hygiene are recommended before and after interacting with companion animals.
How can I protect my pet?
Since there’s no vaccine for the new coronavirus, preventive steps and preparation are the best ways to protect yourself and your pet.
Create an emergency plan for your pet
- Have a two-week supply of your pet’s food on hand in case you’re not able to get to the store.
- Create a list of the medications your pet takes, including dosages and administration instructions. Make sure you have enough medication for at least two weeks.
- Identify a trusted relative, friend, or sitter who will help care for your pet if you become ill and cannot care for your pet for a period of time.
- Make sure your pet is microchipped and wearing an up-to-date identification tag.
Practice good hygiene to stay healthy
- Wash your hands often with soap and water. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds and be sure to get the back of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Wash your hands after touching or playing with your pets. While there is no evidence at this time that pets can spread the coronavirus, washing hands after interacting with animals is always a good idea.
- When you don’t have access to soap and water, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick and stay home when you aren’t feeling well.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces you touch often.
If you contract COVID-19
- Restrict contact with your pet, just as you would other people.
- Avoid direct contact with pets, including petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food.
- Avoid sneezing or coughing on or near your pet.
- If you must care for your pet while you are sick, wash your hands before and after you interact and wear a face mask.