MAITLAND, Fla. – Furever Family Animal Hospital in Maitland is offering a drive-thru service for pets. Since early March, the hospital started offering curbside and drop-off appointments.
The client calls upon arrival, and a doctor will come out to bring the pet inside.
Dr. Deanna Armstrong said the hospital is seeing around five to 10 clients per day. She said the feedback from the community has been mainly positive.
“They’re grateful that we’re still open and able to help them and the community and their pets,” she said. “We’ve gotten minimal pushback from just a few people that really want to be with their pet for veterinary services. But, given the current circumstances, everyone’s been pretty receptive.”
Dr. Armstrong said clients can come in on very special circumstances such as a critically ill animal or euthanizations. The client will be prescreened before being allowed inside.
Kris Orndorff, the hospital lead veterinary technician said they have been getting more calls from people since they are at home more often with their animals.
“It’s been good to see that animals get the help and the treatment and the [medications] and the attention that they need,” she said.
The hospital is also offering online consultations. Clients can call or text the hospital number or email in videos and pictures.
"Convenience is a very important factor that we provide for our clients," Dr. Armstrong said.
For Andrew Pacheco, the shift lead veterinary technician, he is grateful to still have a job.
“I was elated,” he said when he found out the hospital was staying open. “To know for a fact that I have job security, first off, because of there a lot of people that don’t have that right now. Second off, to know that I’m going to be here for my patients that I have contact with every single day.”
Dr. Armstrong knew it was important to stay open for the community.
"Not only are we here to help the community and the patients that are relying on us, but it's really nice to offer hours to my staff, to be here to get out of the house, a little change of scenery. So I think really really important."
The hospital staff is using homemade masks and bandannas for protection.
“We definitely have been limiting our use for PPE when it comes to reusable gloves, reusable gowns, and reusable masks,” Orndorff said. “We do our best to make sure that we don’t need those items here so it’s safe for human medicine and leave that focus on them and not taking those items up.”