Standard operating procedures (SOPs)

Last updated 11 May 2018

Vet Hospital Port Shepstone is bound to the following rules and regulations, not only to protect the hospital’s internal operations and to make us function more smoothly, but also to protect the interest of our clients, patients and staff – and to enable us to give a better service.

Please take the time to familiarise yourself with Vet Hospital Port Shepstone’s standard operating procedures

General

  • Consulting hours are from Mondays to Fridays from 08:30 to 11:00 and then again from 16:00 to 17:30. Up-front appointment essential.
  • Consultations on Wednesday afternoons are strictly for emergencies.
  • Saturday consulting hours are from 08:30 to 11:00.
  • There will be no official consulting hours on Sundays and public holidays.
An attending veterinarian will only be available for consultations when the patient is present.

Times and locations of emergency after hour consults will be advised by the veterinarian on call. All out of consulting and emergency consultations are subjected to an additional professional surcharge fee.

Vet Shop hours are from Mondays to Fridays 08:00 to 18:00 and Saturdays from 8:30 to 12:00. The Vet Shop will be closed on Sundays and public holidays.

Admission times for booked, routine and elective procedures, such as spays, neuters and dental scales (see below), are between 8:00 and 10:00, except if advised otherwise by the attending veterinarian.

Patient discharge times are between 16:00 and 18:00 on weekdays and 10:00 and 11:00 on Saturdays. Sunday and public holiday discharge times will be advised by the attending veterinarian.

Visiting hours for all hospitalised cases are between 16:00 and 17:30 on weekdays and 10:00 and 11:00 on Saturdays. There are no visiting hours on Sundays and public holidays.

All dogs should be on a leash, cats should be in baskets and birds should be enclosed. Our Vet Shop carries an extensive range of these items or ask the receptionist to supply you with a temporary hospital cage or leash.

To prevent the loss of blankets, leads, baskets and collars, please refrain from leaving these items with your pet(s) during hospitalisation (except when advised otherwise). When these items were left behind, it is the responsibility of the owner to inform the discharging staff to hand these items back.

All pets presented to our hospital must be accommodated by the rightful owner or a legal guardian. Presenting clients are to fill in consent forms on discretion of the reception staff.

Apart from vaccinations, dental procedures and elective spay and neuter operations, no ‘quotes’ will be given without an official consultation with the owner and the pet.

Deposits will be required for most serious and/or hospitalised cases.

Elective spays & neuters

  • Quotes for these procedures are available from our reception.
  • 10% discount applicable on Tuesdays. For elective spays and neuters only and not applicable when any additional procedures are performed.
  • Spay and neuter operations are done on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
  • The quoted amounts for these procedures include peri-operative and post operative pain killers.
  • Booking essential at least one day in advance.
  • Breakfast should be withheld the day of the procedure.
  • Admission and discharge times are as above, unless advised differently by the attending veterinarian.
  • Operation stitches are to be removed two weeks post operation, unless advised differently by the attending veterinarian.

Elective dentals

  • Quotes for these procedures are available after an official consult with the attending veterinarian. No exceptions.
  • 10% discount applicable on Thursdays. For elective dentals only and not applicable when any additional procedures are performed.
  • Dental procedures are done on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
  • The quoted amounts for these procedures include peri-operative and post operative pain killers.
  • Booking essential at least one day in advance.
  • Breakfast should be withheld the day of the procedure.
  • Admission and discharge times are as above, unless advised differently by the attending veterinarian.

Stray animals

Stray animals presented to Vet Hospital Port Shepstone will be scanned for an identifying microchip. In an attempt to prevent a pet animal from repeatedly getting lost we recommend sterilisation and the placement of a microchip.

Upon the location of the rightful owner of a non-chipped stray animal, the rightful owner will be financially responsible for the cost of a newly placed microchip or for the boarding fee equivalent thereof.

After the attempt to locate the rightful owner were unsuccessful, stray animals will be transferred to the South Coast S.P.C.A.

Unclaimed or unidentifiable injured or sick stray animals will be treated and stabalised at our hospital and then be transferred to the South Coast S.P.C.A. for further treatment. The attending veterinarian, lawfully, has the right to euthanise severely injured/suffering stray animals at his/her own discretion.

Ticks & fleas

All affected hospitalised or boarding animals will be treated with an appropriate tick and flea product at the discretion of the attending veterinarian.

In the case where ticks are found, the attending veterinarian may also request additional blood tests to exclude Tick fever and other tick related blood parasites.

The cost of these tests and treatments will be the responsibility of the owner.

Pet medical insurance

Vet Hospital Port Shepstone has no official affiliation with any pet medical insurance company.

The pet medical insurance policy is between the policy holder (yourself) and the underwriter. Because most medical insurance companies compensates the client / policy holder, and not the veterinary practice, apart from completing the required medical history and invoice details on the claim form, Vet Hospital Port Shepstone does not deal directly with pet medical insurance claims. It is still the responsibility of the pet owner to settle the veterinary bill in full and to claim back from the medical insurance company.

Medical insurance claim forms will only be completed upon the full payment of services rendered.

For more information, see our pet health insurance page.

Dispensing of animal medicines

Our on-site animal pharmacy carries a variety of scheduled and non-scheduled medicine for animals.

In accordance with the Veterinary And Para-Veterinary Professions Act (Act 19 Of 1982), scheduled medication (schedule 3 and upwards), will only be dispensed after a recent veterinary consultation with the patient. No scripts are allowed.

In South Africa, only registered paraveterinarians such as veterinary nurses, technicians and specialised pharmacists are animal health care providers authorised to dispense schedule 3 medication, and only registered veterinarians are allowed to dispense medicine which is schedule 4 and upwards.

Also in accordance with the act, no more than one month’s supply of scheduled medication will be dispensed at a time and scripts older than 6 months will only be renewed after a consultation with a veterinarian.

Aggressive animals

We do not condone aggressive animal behaviour. An aggressive dog or cat is not a pet. We consider these animals a serious danger to humans and other animals.

Because of the high incidence of testosterone-induced aggression, we strongly encourage early neutering of male dogs and cats. Early puppy socialisation, training and obedience have also been proven to prevent these behaviours.

Aggressive animals will be muzzled, scruffed and/or tranquilised if required.

In the case where aggressive animals were not officially vaccinated against the Rabies virus within the last year, these cases might be referred to the State Veterinary Department for euthanasia and Rabies testing.

No tranquilisers or sedatives will be dispensed without an official consultation with an attending veterinarian, even if the animal is too aggressive for the owners to handle.

We do not offer any transport or ambulance service because a “dog is too aggressive or too big to put in the car”, even in the case of an ’emergency’.

To protect our staff, clients, patients and the owners, we reserve the right not to consult, treat, hospitalise or work in any way with aggressive animals.

Transport & mobile services

Vet Hospital Port Shepstone does not offer any house call, transport or ambulance services, even in the case of an ’emergency’ or the absence of the owner. Transportation and the cost thereof, is solely the responsibility of the owner or the caretaker.

Healthy Happy Pets Program

The Healthy Happy Pet program is Vet Hospital Port Shepstone’s loyalty program for recurring clients.

For more information, see our Healthy Happy Pets program page.

Radiographic imaging & medical test results

Radiographic images (x-rays) and any printed or electronic forms of medical test results will remain the property of Vet Hospital Port Shepstone and will not be released to the client. The acquisition of these test results serve as diagnostic and treatment support services and must be kept on hand for the duration set out by law.

Video recordings & taking of photographs

We allow, and sometimes endorse, the taking of photographs of patients for progress, diagnostic and recording purposes. Identifying personal details of these photographs will never be revealed.

For the safety and privacy of our patients, other clients and staff, video recordings are strictly prohibited.

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