Veterinary clinics in Walker County have taken a number of precautions to ensure the safety of people and their pets due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The majority of animal clinics announced via Facebook this week their plans for operation.
The Animal Hospital of Walker County is still seeing pets for exams and performing surgeries. Pet owners have been encouraged to stay in their vehicles and to call the animal hospital to check-in upon arrival. An employee will then come out to get the pet when it can be examined.
Medications can also be filled and brought out to vehicles.
Pet owners can choose to make payments over the phone or come inside to pay.
"We are not allowing any more than 10 people at a time in the building so please do not get upset when we ask you to step back outside," the animal hospital shared on Facebook. "We are taking all necessary precautions to help keep you all and us safe. This needs to be taken seriously and we are trying our best so we can stay open and serve you all."
Animal General in Jasper is still serving pets as well, and the vet clinic has promised to come out to vehicles to do general vaccinations if requested. Pet owners should call the office to check-in when they arrive if they do not plan on coming inside the facility.
Prescriptions can also be filled and brought out to vehicles.
"Again we cannot stress enough to you that if you are sick or have come in contact with anyone sick please refrain from coming into the building," Animal General posted to Facebook.
Sumiton Animal Clinic has made the decision to close at 4 p.m. each day but is still providing services for pet owners. The vet clinic has recommended that pets be examined and then brought back outside to their owners, so as to limit the number of people inside the clinic.
Clinic doors will remain locked, and pet owners can call for service or approach the front door for assistance.
"We still want to help and take care of the babies but protect our staff and doctor at the same time," Sumiton Animal Clinic shared. "Please bear with us as we work through this new system during this virus outbreak."
Jasper Veterinary Clinic is seeing patients by appointment only. Walk-in visits should only occur in a true emergency.
"Due to the increasing number of coronavirus cases in Walker County and the surrounding areas, we are strongly encouraging routine procedures such as vaccinations, nail trims, and anal gland expressions to be postponed until a later date," Jasper Veterinary Clinic posted to Facebook. "If your pet is sick or injured, though, of course, bring those to see us."
Medications, food, etc. can be brought out to pet owners' vehicles.
All Creatures Animal Clinic in Jasper will be open during normal business hours, and the clinic is offering to come to get pets outside that need to be examined. Pet owners have been asked to make an appointment unless making an emergency visit.
Farmstead Veterinary Medical Center is also requesting appointments to be made or pet owners should call the medical center when they arrive.
"Upon arrival someone from our team will come out to your vehicle to retrieve your pet. All payments for services, prescription refills, food purchase etc. will be taken over the phone or a team member will come to your vehicle to retrieve payment," the medical center posted to Facebook. "Please call ahead for refill so that we can streamline the process and be prepared upon your arrival."
Red Barn Animal Clinic made the decision to close for services from March 23-27. Pet owners are asked to call the clinic on Monday, March 30, to see if services have been resumed.
Red Barn veterinarian Jana Sullivan said if pets need emergency care to call Veterinary Specialists of Birmingham at 205-967-9107; Trussville Emergency Pet Care at 205-661-2273; or Steel City Emergency Vets at 205-413-8989.