Pet parents in the city have been running from pillar to post to get check-ups after check-ups for their sick pets. Many rue the fact that pets don’t have a holistic, one-stop clinic that can take care of all their needs. Many will attest to the fact that they run from a blood test at one lab, to an ultrasound at another and then a consultation at a different clinic. While many animal hospitals and private clinics do exist in the city, veterinary doctors themselves feel the lack of support in infrastructure. All of that has changed with the all-new Crown Vet Clinic that just opened in Mahalaxmi.
Hardly a month old, this soon to be 24/7 clinic is ticking all the right boxes. With a state-of-the-art facility, a 4,500 sq feet space below the Mahalaxmi bridge and dedicated surgery rooms, Crown Vet looks like a promising and high -uality private clinic. Sheroy Wadia, the head of business at Crown Vet knew that a comprehensive, high standard animal care was the need of the hour. “Pratap Singh Gaekwad, from the royal family of Baroda, and I thought of launching such a space last year. We noticed that post-operative care and boarding was something that was missing in the city; while countries abroad have separate wards treating recovering patients. So we thought of bringing everything under one roof with surgeries, boarding, X-ray, ultrasound, blood work, diagnostics and a pharmacy,” he said.
Wadia observed that the pet industry in general was on the rise. “People spend on premium products for their pets from food, spas and grooming. We realised that pet parents would want premium healthcare for them as well,” he said. He mentioned that the clinic was scanning the environment before taking up other projects. “We are not a 24/7 facility yet but are inching towards it. Once we see the clinic picking up, we might go into specializations. We want this to be a training ground,” he added.
The white space has been carefully designed with furry friends in mind. Three surgery rooms with one dedicated to dental work are the backbone of the clinic. There are 10 kennels for dogs and 12 cages for cats and smaller animals. A spacious prep room is where the action happens according to the clinical director, Billie-Jo Chambers. As an experienced British surgeon with 10 years in the industry, she had a lot observations to share about the city and its pets. “In UK, we were a team of seven vets in our spacious clinic. Space is a matter of concern here as pets are not raised in the vast countryside. Pet owners are as loving and caring but don’t have many opportunities or awareness about healthcare. Vets here are doing a fantastic job with the infrastructure they have but they usually work alone without assistance. They work long hours and need ample support. The variety of dog breeds that one has to treat is also noteworthy. A Siberian Husky in an Indian city is not something you see every day,” she said.
A team of three Indian vets assists her along with the head nurse who is also from UK. Niharika Sawant, an assistant vet at the clinic spoke about the quality of care given at the clinic. “When we were at BSPCA, we never sedated animals for general procedures. Here, we usually sedate animals for such procedures and we realised that it is much easier than four people holding the pet down. We have seen how pet owners keep past records and documents but every report here is digitised and stored in the central data. We are getting to implement the standards that we learned in textbooks,” she said.
Around 15 cats have been operated and a few emergency cases have been undertaken since the clinic has opened its doors. Chambers has noticed that most pets she has treated have skin problems. “For a lot of foreign breeds, the climate here takes adjusting to. I see that a lot of pet owners feed curd and rotis to their pets and it is logically not possible for the pet to utilise that lactose. Onions are their biggest enemies and these dogs here just love their curries. There is a sense of fear among owners with regards to neutering. Castration and spaying is always recommended for the pets good health. I recently operated on an infected uterus and I can say that neutering female dogs cuts the risk of mammary cancer by 96% and lowers the risk of testicular and prostate issues in male dogs. I think many people are not aware of good neutering practices or don’t have the means to get them done. One should seek professional help even when selecting grooming products for their pets,” she said. Chambers is of the opinion that regular seminars and CPD (Continuous Professional Development) meetings with the vets in the city will only help the community with better knowledge.
Scroll down for a glimpse at Crown Vet’s leading edge facilities.
[Crown Vet is open for consultation from 9 am to 7 pm currently and the standard consultation fee begins from Rs.900.]
Photographs: Karan Khosla (@thekhos)