COVID 19 Service Updates
IMPORTANT COVID UPDATES - March 2021
Update #1: Oxford Cat Clinic - Moving to FIXED TEAMS at Botley and Marston
From Monday 8th February
We are making changes in response to the news that new variants of Covid 19 are more transmissible; this increases the chance of a positive isolation within our teams and the possibility for all in-contact team members to be asked to self-isolate. Within each clinic site, we need to work closely with each other in order to care for your lovely cats. By splitting our work-force into 2 separate teams at Botley and Marston we hope to have a second Oxford team always available to help should one location team be depleted.
These changes have not been made lightly - we are aware that everyone is already battling with so many changes in the last year - but we feel this is a necessary alteration until we are all safely vaccinated, and in this way, we hope to secure a continuous and first-class veterinary service for your cats throughout 2021.
Marston: Dr. Eleanor Flynn and Dr. Muna Roberts will head the team
with nurses Kim and Maria, and receptionists Sophie and Anne
Botley: Dr. Duncan Watts and Dr. Fiona Miller will head the team
assisted by our regular visiting vets Drs. Susie Winterbourne, Natalia Mohr and Sam Walker
supported by nurses Steph, Kat, Gisele, Stacey, Becca, Barbara and Sam,
with Brittany and Charlotte at reception
Dr. Duncan Watts new to the Oxford Cat Clinic, but a long-term resident in Oxford. He has known Caroline and Martha for many years. Dr. Duncan is a very experienced vet. We love his gentle and considered approach and are thrilled to be welcoming him.
Martha Cannon and Caroline Blundell will continue to work from the Botley Clinic seeing external referrals from other Clinics, as well as advising on more complex cases that have been internally referred by our own team. Please be reassured that our services on offer will not be affected. Clinic availability and capacity will increase at Marston and be slightly decreased at Botley.
We continue to be extremely busy and often working to capacity, so we may not have immediate appointment space at your usual clinic and offer you the alternative site. Happily, due to lockdown restrictions, traffic volumes are low at present, so traffic delays across town are limited. Patient records are safely shared across both sites, so case-continuity is guaranteed. Alternatively, if prefer to see a specific vet or visit a specific clinic and you are willing to wait we can guide you to the next available appointment. For same-day visits choices of the time and vet available may be limited. All our vets are handpicked for their knowledge and ability with cats, and are also nice people! so hopefully you will be happily delighted by the new face!
Appointments can be booked using our on-line (website) booking service or by phone. We do hold a number of "same-day" appointments back from the on-line booking service for more poorly cats so please ring if you can not find a suitable date or time. Due to high 'phone call volumes, calls are answered across both sites (your call may be answered at Botley or Marston). The receptionist should always announce which site you are talking to and be very specific about where your appointment is booked. Always ask if you are not sure.
We are very grateful for all our clients' support and patience at this time and hope you will work with us if we suggest an appointment at the other clinic.
Food orders and repeat prescriptions can still be ordered from and collected at your preferred Clinic
For those of you who are shielding, we will continue to provide distanced support in every way we can
Update #2: Laboratory Update
A combination of Brexit and Covid are causing some external laboratory reports to be delayed currently. We apologise, but this is out of our hands. We will do the best we can to support anyone affected by this and hope it settles quickly.
Update #3: Vaccination Update
Vaccine vials are being prioritized for human Covid 19 vaccinations causing animal vaccine supply issues. As a result, we will be prioritising vaccinations as follows:
Boosters for Kittens: We continue to vaccinate kittens and give the first annual booster for adolescent cats (12 months after their initial kitten course) as normal.
Boosters for Senior cats: We continue to vaccinate cats over 10 years of age as normal.
Boosters for Adult cats: We are inviting clients to book annual vaccinations for cats whose vaccination is overdue by more than 2 - 3 months. However, if you have any health concerns regarding your cat e.g. lumps, bumps, losing weight, skin issues, dental disease etc. please do not delay booking an appointment; as with humans delays can be both costly and at times heartbreaking. Please make a note of your concern in the "reason for appointment" if booking online or simply tell our reception team if booking by phone.
If you can attend appointments for vaccinations during the week rather than at the weekends this does help us as weekends tend to be booked with poorly cats.
Once again would like to thank you all for your continued patience, support and understanding during this difficult time.
General Covid Guidelines
During COVID 19 we have made three important changes to our normal consulting process:
VISITING THE CLINIC WITH YOUR CAT
All visits are by appointment only
We examine your cat in the clinic but consult with owners by telephone
No owners are allowed inside the clinic, except in the case of cat-euthanasia or other exceptional circumstance
Please remember do not bring your cat to us without booking an appointment.
In an emergency or if our online booking service is suspended please call us to book an appointment
Please bring your cat in a secure and labelled carrier. Remember to bring a charged mobile phone for the consultation. Clients are still not permitted on the premises. Most conversations are carried out in your car on mobile phones, but you may also want a coat on wet or windy days in case of face to face (masked) conversation with a member of our team.
Before leaving your home please check:
That you know which clinic you are expected at
That your mobile phone is charged
That your cat-box is secure and labelled
When you arrive at the Clinic please:
Call reception to let us know you have arrived
When instructed bring your cat in the secure, labelled basket to our doorstep where the receptionist will accept your cat, allowing you to return to your car. We will wipe the handles with COVID disinfectant before picking the basket up and upon returning it.
Please don't worry about your cat being in the clinic on his or her own - they are in safe and loving hands all the time, and although you are not in the same room with your cat you are still very much involved in the veterinary consultation
The vet will call you on your mobile phone to speak to you about any worries and concerns you may have regarding your cat and to discuss any findings, treatment plans and costs involved
Once your cat is ready to return home we will ring to collect telephone payment and to let you know we are about to bring you cat to the door, or if your cat is being admitted the nurse or vet will come to the car-park with the consent form for you to sign
By applying these restrictions we ensure the safety of our clients, our team and all our families.
Within the clinic, our teams are observing social distancing where possible and PPE rules apply to keep everybody safe.
BOTLEY 01865 243000: Open 8 am to 6:30 pm Monday to Friday
MARSTON 01865 950700: Open 8 am TO 5.30 pm Monday to Friday
WEEKENDS BOTLEY CLINIC ONLY: SATURDAY 9 am to 2 pm and SUNDAY 9 am to 12 pm
Emergencies: outside our regular opening hours please call our Out of Hours service on 01993 811355
EXTERNAL REFERRALS AND VETERINARY HOSPITAL
Our referral service and veterinary hospital are fully operating but behind closed doors as outlined above.
Thank you for your cooperation and understanding throughout this current situation.
The Oxford Cat Clinic Team
It doesn’t need to be an emergency!
Any condition that may deteriorate to become a welfare concern should be seen. We all know how cats hide their illness, so we are anxious to speak to you as soon as you recognise that your cat is unwell. Don't feel you need to try and decide whether or not to seek advice. If you are worried we are here to help. The first 20-minute consultation is charged at £48.50 - plus the cost of any procedure or medication required. Appointments can be booked via our website or by phone".
Vaccinations ("Booster") for Adult Cats
Boosters for Senior cats: We continue to vaccinate cats over 10 years of age as normal.
Boosters for Adult cats: We are inviting clients to book annual vaccinations for cats Whose vaccination is overdue by more than 2 - 3 months. However, if you have any health concerns regarding your cat ie lumps, bumps, losing weight, skin issues etc please do not delay booking an appointment, as with humans delays can be both costly and at times heartbreaking. Please make a note of your concern in the "reason for appointment" if booking on line or simply tell our reception team if booking by phone
We are sorry but we are not able to re-introduce the complimentary 6-month checks at this time due to COVID pressures and the demand on appointments currently.
How to book a consultation
Please call the clinic. Lines can be busy so please be patient. The phone lines are shared between both clinics to ease congestion, so be sure to state clearly which clinic you prefer to visit and reception will book the most convenient time. We will advise you if a visit to the Clinic is needed or whether a telephone consultation would be more appropriate. Please note telephone consultations are chargeable.
If a follow-up visit does need to be carried out following a telephone consultation so long as the visit takes place within 24 hours as second consultation fee will be charged. Please be aware that we are not able to consult by email and that e-mails are not monitored 24-hours.
Kitten, 1st Vaccinations & 2nd Vaccinations
We are prioritising the vaccinationof kittens and cats in the first and second year of life. You will be asked to bring your kitten/cat to the Clinic and asked to wait outside. We will then collect a brief history from you and your kitten will be collected from you at the door. The vet will carry out a full physical health assessment, discuss any findings with you by phone and give the appropriate vaccination. Your cat will then be handed back to you.
Some cases do need to be seen at the hospital without delay. For example any cat that has been involved in major trauma, has suffered blood loss, has difficulty breathing or has an eye injury will be directed to come down to the clinic at an appointed tme for direct examination. Please ring us on 01865 243000 and press 1 iff you think you have an emergency and need further advice.
Ordering of Medicine and Food
Please offer as much notice as possible when re-ordering food and medicines. We stipulate 72 hours. If requests are <72 hours an express prescription fee is payable. Due to COVID 19 our supplies are less regular than usual. Once your order is ready we will text you to arrange pre-payment over the phone, and collection from our clinic doorstep. We also have a courier service available for drugs (not food) for £9.00. Please allow 7 - 10 days for courier delivery as delivery has been irregular due to COVID 19 and this is beyond our control. To place an order please click below. We also now have a delivery option on our Cat's Whiskers Reward Plan.
We recognise the importance of neutering cats to prevent unwanted pregnancies and other related health and behaviour issues. Please contact us if your cat requires neutering.
We are still admitting cases that require hospitalisation into our hospital, where they will be cared for as usual by our dedicated team. Unfortunately, at this time if a cat is hospitalised at our facility, visits will not be permitted except in exceptional circumstances such as euthanasia of your cat
We monitor e-mails regularly but they are not monitored constantly, so please do not use e-mails to report an urgent case. We will occasionally request photos or videos via e-mail to support a telephone consultation.
Sanitisation - Personal & Surfaces
We have increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfection of all surfaces. If you are asked to enter the building please follow instructions from our team regarding movement on site and sanitise and/or wash hands on arrival and before leaving.
Please make sure we have the correct contact number. Stay close to your phone at the allotted time and the vet will ring you as soon as they can. Because we remain very busy there can be a slight slip in appointment times. We will let you know if there is a major hold-up, but if you are unsure and time is ticking-on please ring and check all is in order.
Vulnerable & Self-Isolating Adults
If you are affected by Covid 19, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEND THE CLINIC, please call us. We will find a way of giving your cat essential care. If you are concerned about cat food and medical supplies please ring us to discuss options and make a plan.