StreetVet

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Charity Name: StreetVet

StreetVet was set up in 2016, inspired by the incredible bond between a homeless man and his dog. Victims of the UK homelessness epidemic often have scant support, except for, in a growing number of cases, the companionship of their pets. 

Some have had their pets since before losing their homes. Others had the responsibility of pet ownership thrust upon them. Irrespective, the bond between many homeless people and their dogs is profound, such that their pets’ wellbeing is a life-shaping priority. Now our ever increasing number of volunteers can help, by providing accessible fundamental vet care. 

StreetVet vets and nurses, working with outreach organisations, are out in multiple communities weekly. Since inception we have helped care for nearly 2000 dogs (some cats, rats, a rabbit and a ferret!). We have vaccinated and microchipped; treated for fleas and protected against lungworm; prescribed pain relief and helped fight infections; performed surgeries; and sometimes just sat and listened. 

StreetVet aims to:  

  • provide free accessible vet care to the homeless, vulnerable and those in crisis; provide a volunteer platform for the Veterinary profession; 
  • foster and support the human animal bond in its most profound form; 
  • and promote and protect the welfare of animals. 

The focus of the charity is for volunteer vets and veterinary nurses to help provide veterinary services to those in need, primarily those who would struggle to access veterinary care through other providers due to lack of mobility, finances or trust.  

The charity delivers veterinary services and daily pet-care essentials through:  

  • Stations at a fixed location every week, normally in conjunction with a social care provider such as food provision by a third-party partner. Stations are held consistently every week so that owners know that they are able to visit at certain times and to have a presence in the community which builds trust and engagement; 
  • Outreach where teams proactively seek out owners, often meeting new owners and detecting problems at an early stage but may have to work with owners going through particularly difficult times; and 
  • Notifications where members of the public, other homeless individuals or hostel staff may make a referral. 

Through each of these methods we deliver free preventative and reactive veterinary care, procedures such as simply diagnostic tests, education and daily essentials providing the same standard of care that any paying member of the public would expect to receive.  

To date StreetVet’s team of over 400 volunteers have delivered more than 4500 consultations to over 1700 canine and feline patients on the streets. The significant growth in StreetVet’s service delivery has evolved through a combination of increased need and volunteers extending into new locations that have previously been lacking this invaluable service. 

  

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