Dear VI Friends and Family,
I recognize this is an unprecedented time for us all with a great deal of uncertainty. Our thoughts and hearts are with each of you and your pets, and we hope that you are safe.
Past pandemics such as SARS, Avian Influenza, HIV/AIDS and Ebola all originated in animals. Unsurprisingly, the current COVID-19 pandemic creating such suffering worldwide and in our backyard, also originated in animals. The need for VI’s work could not have come at a more important time. Disease and need knows no borders, and it is critical we continue to keep animals healthy here at home, and around the world.
We will be providing you with regular updates on our programs, relevant animal news and pet advice to help you stay informed. Visit our social media pages and website regularly.
In the meantime, I do wish to provide you with a few important pieces of information:
- Agriculture, encroachment on the environment, wildlife markets and demand for meat are the factors that drive pandemics. Plant-based diets, even just a couple days a week, help to lower the risk for disease transmission by lowering demand for animals in the global food chain. Everyone in the world can play a part, no matter how small you may feel, when your actions are repeated by millions of people change occurs.
- Certain areas of the world are imposing restrictions on pets due to incorrect information. We are saddened to learn that South Africa banned walking dogs outside during this crisis. There is no evidence to suggest you can contract COVID-19 from your pets, thus there is no need to keep them inside, or even abandon them as happening in the US and all over the world. The virus may be able to live on their fur for as well as most surfaces for a short period of time, so just be mindful of this and wash your hands regularly.
- Many businesses across the US have been mandated to close right now, however veterinary practices are deemed essential services. If your pet is sick, seek treatment however, call ahead as most practices have enforced strict protocols to prevent disease spread.
Please write us via email, phone or social media with any questions or concerns.
We wish you the best of health and well-being, and thank you for caring for all the animals and our planet.
Dr. Scarlett Magda
Founder & President