At Family Pet Veterinary Centers (FPVC) and Animal Dentistry Referral Services (ADRS), it is our priority to try to keep people and pets healthy. As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread globally, FPVC is taking appropriate precautions to address the outbreak by following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Our current approach and response to COVID-19 is outlined below.

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is caused by a member of the coronavirus family, and it first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China. Symptoms of COVID-19 can include fever, runny nose, cough and breathing trouble. While most people experience mild symptoms, some may develop more severe symptoms, which can be fatal.

COVID-19 is believed to be spread only person to person, which means that infection can occur through close contact with infected individuals. Although it is believed that COVID-19 is most contagious when an infected individual is most symptomatic, an individual may still be contagious without exhibiting any symptoms.

Prevention Tips

According to the CDC, the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to avoid it. FPVC team members are doing our part by practicing good hygiene at work and at home:

  • Regularly washing hands for at least 20 seconds throughout the day with warm water and soap, specifically before eating. This is done more frequently than normal.
  • Wearing cloth masks
  • Social Distancing
  • We are frequently cleaning and disinfecting commonly used surfaces (countertops, keyboards, doorknobs, faucets, and stethoscopes).
  • You will be informed if you were in contact with a team member that becomes diagnosed with COVID-19
  • For additional guidance on maintaining your health, see the CDC’s webpage on prevention and treatment.

Your Personal Health

If you have symptoms of acute respiratory illness, you should self quarantine or seek medical attention as stated by the CDC. As mentioned in the video above, do not drive to our office if:

  • You have a fever, cough, sore throat or
  • You have flu-like symptoms or
  • You have exposure to people or locations with suspected or documented COVID-19 cases in the past three weeks

Request a TeleVet consult (see below) to talk to one of our veterinarians from home.

What Does COVID-19 Mean For My Pet?

Your pet is not at risk for infecting you with COVID -19. Please read this blog for updated information on COVID and pets.

Do not abandon your pets out of fear of contracting COVID-19 from them or infecting them with COVID-19. Practice basic hygiene. Wash your hands with soap and water after handling or walking your pets. If you’d like to take extra precaution, you can wipe down your pets with disposable baby wipes after their walks. Contact us if you need further advice.

Should our offices be forced to temporarily close as an absolute worst case, we will always have someone able to come in to take care of boarding and/or hospitalized pets.

What Should I Do To Prepare For My Pet's Care?

We know that some of you may end up quarantined or stuck at home sick. We still want to help you the best we can. Some choices are as follows:

  • Identify another person who is willing and able to transport your pet to our office. With notice, we will meet them at the door so the pet can enter the building. This will usually become a drop-off appointment. Even healthy owners should consider avoiding entering the building and utilizing the following medical video conference app for the pet’s exam.
  • Download the app: TeleVet-Remote Pet Care from the Apple app store or Google Play. Request a consult ($45) and we will schedule a medical video conference, phone call, and/or chat with you. When the initial consult results in the need to listen, feel, or test your pet, an additional Medical Progress Exam ($45) is needed. This exam is less expensive than our typical Diagnostic Exam. Should you want to be present while self quarantined, a video conference of your pet’s visit can be arranged through the TeleVet app as well.
  • Oral dentistry consultations are now available via TeleVet for the $45 fee. While this is less expensive than the typical $100 fee, no part of the TeleVet consultation is refundable at the time of the anesthetic dental procedure given the added technology costs to the practice.
  • We can arrange to deliver needed food/medications to your door in most cases.
  • To schedule an appointment to have your pet seen in the office you may call (515-224-9747 West Des Moines, 515-981-0317 Norwalk) or you can request a physical appointment through our website. Select the preferred location above, then use the dropdown menu to choose Request an Appointment.
  • To send a note or question to the front desk, text us! (Use the TeleVet app for medical questions.) Norwalk: 515-981-0317 West Des Moines: 515-224-9747

New Formats For Appointments as of July 6, 2021:

The Family Pet Veterinary Center Team is excited to announce that we will be opening for in person appointments starting Tuesday, July 6th, 2021. Masks will be required. Technician appointments, day admission appointments, surgery check-ins, medication refills, and food pick ups will remain curbside. We are so excited to have face to face interactions with you again, we’ve missed seeing all of you.

Key Points to Our Reopening Plan:

  • Our lobby and waiting area will remain closed at this time.
  • Curbside appointments will still be available for those who prefer to remain in their vehicle during their pet’s appointment.
  • If you are planning to attend your pets appointment in person, we ask that no more than 2 people accompany your pet in the exam room.
  • When you arrive for your pet’s appointment, please remain in your vehicle and call us at 515-224-9747 or 515-981-0317 and a team member will let you know when to come into the building.
  • When you arrive to pick up medication or food for your pet, please remain in your vehicle and call us, we will bring your items to you. Please allow 24 hours for food and medication refills, to allow our team members time to prepare your items for pick up.

Our team is trained to provide your pets with the best possible care and even one sick team member impacts our ability to do that tremendously. We ask that if you are sick, you stay home. If you are entering our building, please keep your mask on at all times, regardless of your vaccination status. In an effort to keep up with the ever changing status of Covid-19 policies, we will be continuously re-evaluating our policies and procedures to keep our team members and clients health and safety a top priority. We ask that you allow us to focus on providing exceptional care to your pets instead of discussing vaccine statuses or mask requirements. We would like to thank you in advance for understanding and following our policies we have in place at this time. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Stay healthy,

Drs. Jen Mathis, Ryan Southard, Emily Linscheid, Ron Emerson and the entire team of Family Pet Veterinary Centers and Animal Dentistry Referral Services