May 24th 2020
Since ceasing temporarily on 17th March, I have been closely monitoring all updates from the government as well as guidance from the APHA, BVA & RCVS. As we know, here in Scotland, we are due to move into Phase 1 on 28th May. Given that the status of this reads 'high risk the virus is not yet contained' I personally feel that it is still too soon for me to offer appointments. However, the good news is that things are moving in the right direction and I am hopeful that if this continues, I will be able to offer appointments again in the not too distant future.
Meanwhile, I am completing some training courses and webinars in order for me to undertake a full risk assessment and implement necessary precautions. It is unlikely to be 'business as usual' for some time. One thing that's definitely worth doing is getting your dog acclimatised to people wearing face masks. In my experience, most dogs are absolutely fine with them but it's best to take the opportunity to spend a bit of time making sure they know it's nothing to worry about. There's some good advice on this from Davies, The Veterinary Specialists and The Blue Cross.
April 26th 2021
With Scotland now in Level 3, I am able to resume all maintenance appointments and can once again accept new clients. As before, Covid-19 precautions are in place which fully comply with the Scottish Government's advice on 'working in people's homes'. Full details of my precautions are provided via a Covid-19 disclaimer which I send via email. Please note that it is a requirement for me to wear a face covering during the appointment (https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-general-guidance-for-safer-workplaces/pages/work-in-other-peoples-homes-faq/). In addition, I have had my first covid vaccination (awaiting invite for second) and I am regularly taking lateral flow tests.
December 26th 2020
As I am sure everyone is aware, as of today, the whole of mainland Scotland has been placed under Level 4 restrictions. This sadly means that I currently cannot take on any new clients and will be temporarily suspending Clinical Canine Massage maintenance treatments for existing clients with immediate effect. I have contacted everyone who had confirmed bookings in January to advise. For those with bookings further ahead, I will be in contact closer to the time. It is, of course, impossible for me to say when I will be able to start treatments again due to the ever-evolving situation. As soon as I am able to, I will let everyone know - the latest guidance suggests 26th April 2021. However, if you feel that your dog needs treatment urgently, and his or her welfare is being compromised due to the delay, please get in touch.
As always, I am still available for enquiries. Note that I cannot always answer my phone so please leave a message if I don't answer or send a text and I'll call you back. Stay safe and thanks as ever for the support.
July 21st 2020
This morning I finally received clarification from the Scottish Government Animal Health and Welfare Division that appointments can now also take place indoors. Whilst I had understood this to be the case for a couple of weeks now, it's good to have the confirmation. As you can imagine, they are extremely busy just now hence the (apologetic) delay. Please note that an outdoor environment remains preferable but depending on what works best for your own dog, indoor home visits and clinic appointments at Highland Hydrotherapy are now an option - I am also accepting new clients. All additional precautions are of course being fully explained prior to each appointment.
June 24th 2020
The Scottish Government Animal Health and Welfare Division have confirmed that I am now able to conduct Clinical Canine Massage appointments in an outdoor setting, subject to adherence to the rules on physical distancing. This means I am now in a position to offer limited appointments, outdoors only. As an when this guidance changes, I will update.
To say I have spent many, many hours preparing for this is an understatement. I have completed several online training courses and watched the entire series of RCVS webinars on Covid-19. In addition, I have read all the available guidance from the BVA, RCVS, WSAVA and APHA. As I am sure you will appreciate, I have also now implemented a number of conditions and measures to help minimise the potential risk of Covid-19 transmission.
This is not by any means a return to ‘business as usual’ and is very much dependent on the weather cooperating!! However, it is potentially an option for dogs who are in need of treatment. If you would like to discuss this further, please let me know and I will firstly email across my disclaimer which details the conditions and guidance I have in place. If you are happy with all of this, we can then arrange a pre-appointment individual risk-assessment call and take it from there. Initially, appointments will only be available for existing clients, however, if you are new to Clinical Canine Massage, don’t hesitate to get in touch as going forward, this is likely to change. As always, thank you for all your ongoing support.
March 18th 2020
On Monday 16th March the UK government advised that all non-essential contact and travel should be stopped. Yesterday morning, Tuesday 17th March, I temporarily ceased all clinical canine massage appointments, clients with existing bookings were contacted directly. Given the enormous benefits and amazing results I have seen with clinical canine massage, this is absolutely the last thing I wanted to do and I apologise for the disappointment I know that this is causing. I hope it won't be too long before I can offer appointments again. Just to reassure clients whom I have seen recently, I personally do not have any symptoms and have not based this decision on any self-isolation requirements. Instead, I am taking the government advice very seriously and feel that it is unequivocally the right thing to do. Please all take care and if I can do anything to help, even if it's just a chat, then don't hesitate to get in touch. And for anyone newly interested in clinical massage for your dog, that goes for you too. Thank you to all my clients for your continued support, it means so much to me.
Specific Training I have completed for Covid-19
WHO 'How to put on and remove PPE'
WHO 'Emerging respiratory viruses'
WHO 'Infection prevention and control'
Christies Direct 'Safety and awareness training for grooming professionals'
Osmosis.org via Coursera 'Covid-19 what you need to know'
Virtual College 'Prevent Covid-19'
RCVS: All Covid-19 webinars watched