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Hospitalisation

When your pet is ill and the vet has advised that your pet needs to be hospitalised, we understand that this is a worrying experience. We understand that usually the best place for a stress free recovery is in a pet’s own environment but unfortunately sometimes the nature of your pet’s illness may require specialised treatment and nursing that are best carried out in a hospital environment by our trained nursing staff. This may mean fluid therapy, intravenous drugs such as antibiotics or anti-emetics or strong pain relief. We try to ensure that your pet has as comfortable an experience as possible during its stay.

Medium and large breed dogs stay in one of our walk in kennels. We also have small kennels for the smaller dogs in the same ward. They appreciate a smaller space and feel more secure and cosier. If it is going to be a prolonged stay a toy or blanket from home can help your pet to feel more comforted. We have a grassy area adjacent to the practice where your pet will be walked several times during the day, as appropriate to his or her condition, to allow them to go to toilet and to benefit from some fresh air. We also use pheromones to make the kennel area more comfortable.

Your cat will be accommodated in one of our kennels in a separate cattery. This allows them a space to be separate from the dogs and to observe the comings and goings of our busy practice. We make full use of pheromones to make cats feel more at home.

We stock a variety of both prescription and non-prescription food as well as "human" foods such as chicken, tuna or sardines to tempt even the fussiest eater. However, you are welcome to bring your pet's own food, unless there is a veterinary indication that this may not be appropriate. We would particularly ask that in the case of rabbits and other small mammals you bring some of their own food (fresh as well as dry) as a change in diet can be detrimental to these animals' health.

We have a separate isolation facilities for animals with illnesses that may be infectious. Hygiene can be maintained with barrier nursing and can be adapted for cats or rabbits as well as dogs.

We are able to adapt our kennels into oxygen tents for animals with respiratory compromise. We also have heat mats for the kennels. Intravenous fluid therapy can be electronically rate controlled. We have a variety of different types of fluid for different indications and can also offer blood transfusions.

When you and your pet are separated as a result of critical disease and hospitalisation, White Cliffs Vets will endeavour to keep you regularly informed of your pet’s progress and of costs incurred. In order to enable us to do this, it is important that clients ensure we have full details of their address, home and work telephone numbers, mobile phone number and e-mail address, wherever possible.

We usually will be asking you to call us after 9:00am each morning after the vets have done their ward rounds and made decisions about the day to come. At this phone call we will arrange further contact be it by phone or in person. We usually find that most pets settle in to their new surroundings very rapidly, so much so that we would advise keeping visits to a minimum as, dogs especially seem to get very excited after a visit from home. However, we may ask you to come in to discuss a treatment plan or to help tempt a reluctant eater.

Access to animals housed in clinical areas is always at the client’s risk. We cannot be held responsible for any injuries or disease resulting from a client’s presence within an active clinical working environment or the effects of the conditions within these areas. A clinical treatment area may contain surgical equipment, clinical waste, material able to transmit infectious diseases and disoriented animals able to inflict injury.

In principle, we encourage contact between owners and their hospitalised pets, but it is inadvisable to bring minors into an active clinical area without first discussing it with the veterinarian dealing with your pet. In general, access to hospitalised animals is only granted by prior arrangement, when it is deemed safe for the client and unlikely to compromise the treatment of any animal.

During normal surgery hours (8:30am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday and 9:00am to 12:00pm Saturdays) there are always vets and nursing staff on the premises checking your hospitalised pet on a regular case basis but it is not normally possible for someone to be with your pet all the time. Depending on your pet's illness we often suggest your pet going home with you for the night but may request that you bring your pet back the next day to resume treatment.

White Cliffs Vets provides high quality cover for animals may require intensive and constant monitoring of patients through VetNow’s hospitalisation site which is staffed 24/7 a day. This ensures that your pet receives exemplary care around the clock and is never left on its own if it needs intensive care.

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