From essential care, to vaccinations, testing, day-care and boarding facilities, Dr. Ruth Wright and her team at The Island Vet cater to an array of your pet’s needs, with friendly and professional service. One of the top benefits for our furry companions is the amount of space available for them to play and move around in – the clinic is located on the grounds of old horse stables.
“The space is a big advantage,” Dr. Ruth says, as it translates both to more freedom of movement, as well as the ability to offer “fear free” services, where cats and dogs can be kept in separate spaces.
Dr. Ruth decided to open the business with an aim of bringing friendly and professional veterinary services to pet lovers on the island, and to offer a spacious environment for the animals. You may recognise her from her previous job at Animal Care Center in Cole Bay.
The office itself, which used to house a doggy day-care, was badly damaged during the hurricanes of 2017 and has been completely renovated.
The new clinic boasts all the modern facilities needed to care for your pets, such as digital radiology machines, gas anaesthetic machines (which are safer than injections), equipment for in-house blood work, and separate rooms for cats and dogs.
Those needing to travel, say for vacation or medical reasons, can rest assured that their pets have a safe and comfortable home while they are away. At approximately US $20 per night (depending on the size of the pet), it also won’t break the bank.
Caring for Your Pet
Clinics are not just for when our pets get sick. Preventative treatment, as well as spaying and neutering, are recommended.
The most important monthly treatments protect against heartworms, fleas and ticks. Just as important, but required less frequently, are vaccinations.
Both dogs and cats should be vaccinated annually, with puppies also needing three to four sets of vaccinations between the age of 6-16 weeks, and kittens needing two vaccinations at 8-12 weeks old.
The clinic provides Feline leukaemia virus (FeLV), Rhinotracheitis, Calici virus, Chlamydiosis, and Panleukopenia for cats, and Distemper, Parvo virus, Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza, and Adeno virus vaccines for dogs.
While not everyone thinks of vaccinating their pets as a priority, vets highly recommend them as the illnesses can prove deadly, and some spread quickly. Distemper, for example, spread throughout the island after Hurricane Irma.
The virus, which can spread through direct contact or airborne exposure, can start with symptoms such as fever, eye and nasal discharge, and spinal cord/brain inflammation, and progress to convulsions, paralysis and even death. Parvo, which causes vomiting and bloody diarrhoea amongst other symptoms, can also prove fatal.
One of the biggest problems on the island remains the lack of spaying and neutering. Sterilising pets is the responsible thing to do, and lack of the practice forms the biggest problem being faced by vets and animal rescue foundations alike: an abundance of neglected and abandoned animals.
“Vets are not dumping grounds for unwanted pets; they are there for dealing with sick animals who have responsible owners,” Dr. Ruth points out.