Service is still curbside only as Gaithersburg, Md. Vet goes through pandemic

At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, most vets only started curbside services. A clinic in Montgomery County, Maryland has started using the technology to make it work.

At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, most vets only started curbside services. A clinic in Montgomery County, Maryland has started using the technology to make it work.

All animals should be dropped off outside the Muddy Branch Veterinary Center in Gaithersburg.

This is the norm for most local vets who are learning to care for animals and take coronavirus precautions.

“It was a bit of trial and error,” said Victor Katz, chief veterinarian and owner of the Muddy Branch Veterinary Center.

He said it was difficult as it took more work for everyone to coordinate the dropouts. But, they haven’t had a positive coronavirus case and they’ve even started telehealth for some services.

“Sometimes it’s just easier,” Katz said. “Because that way they don’t have to bring the dog that’s really stressed out or the cat that’s really stressed out to the office, we can easily do telemedicine and see what they’re doing. It was just our way of trying to help where we could.

He said they also video chatted with pet owners who were waiting outside. Katz said it was helpful to be able to talk to them, as they couldn’t enter the exam room.

“We actually do FaceTiming with some of the clients… we set it up where we set up an iPad, so we can talk to them while we’re in the exam room,” Katz said. “So it’s like they’re there. We adapt as best we can. “

While he’s excited to be returning to a new normal, Katz said he’s in no rush to let customers come back until it’s safe.

“It’s not going to come back to where we were in January 2020. It’s going to take a while,” Katz said. “Fortunately, we have done pretty well this year because we have protocols and we are very careful with them.”

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