A volunteer vet who helps dogs belonging to homeless people in London is appealing for colleagues across the country to launch similar schemes.

The founder of Street Vet Jade Statt has teamed up with hairdresser and #dosomethingfornothing campaign founder Josh Coombes, who has been giving homeless people across the capital free haircuts for the past 18 months.

Free health check

While the humans get a free haircut, Dr Statt gives their dogs a free health check and administers pain relief medication, antibiotics and preventive treatment, including flea and worm protection.

Dr Statt volunteered after discovering while there is no shortage of vet and nurse volunteer work abroad – helping dogs and cats from Greece to Fiji – very few opportunities exist in the UK.

She said: “I’d love vets to give up the odd day – even just one day a year – to get involved in doing this. There’s definitely scope for it.”

She also appealed for other drug and animal product companies to support the scheme, with a high priority in the cold winter weather being the provision of dog coats.

Charity support

Dr Statt, who works between Fernside Veterinary Centre in Borehamwood and Cuffley Hill Veterinary Centre in Potters Bar, is being supported in her work by Blue Cross, which is donating supplies. Pets she treats are registered as Blue Cross patients and are referred to the charity’s Victoria Animal Hospital if further care is needed.

A typical treatment will involve cutting a dog’s nails, inspecting ears and anal glands, and administering flea and worm treatments. Plans are in hand for Blue Cross to also provide free vaccinations. Microchips may also be arranged once a suitable registration system has been formulated.

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