We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

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Allergy Diets and Your Pet

For anyone who has ever experienced a pet with food allergies, you know just how frustrating it can be to find the right diet to suit your pet’s needs.

At Van Isle Veterinary Hospital, we often ask our clients to start their pet on a “Food Elimination Trial” to narrow down the cause of allergies or to at least help control them. Not all allergies are caused by what your pet eats. In the Comox Valley, it is just as common to see environmental allergies due to the region and climate in which we live. However, if it is determined that your pet is developing allergies from his diet, the next step is to try and rule out the culprit!

What is a Food Elimination Trial and why is it recommended?

The best way to diagnose whether or not your dog is suffering from an adverse food reaction is a food elimination trial. The purpose of a food elimination trial is to determine which ingredient is the cause of the symptoms and remove this ingredient. Food elimination trials are often difficult and time-consuming. However, they are crucial in determining the allergen source that is causing your pet pain and discomfort.

What are the DO’s and DON’Ts to ensure a successful outcome?

Do – Keep a journal of everything your pet ingests and any allergic reactions leading up to and during a dietary elimination trial.

Do – Continue with any medications your veterinarian has prescribed.

Do – keep your pet from eating the other household pets’ food and keep those curious canines out of the litter box!

Do – let grandparents, children, family, friends and neighbours know that they cannot feed your pet anything but the prescribed food. Absolutely NO people food.

Don’t – feed your pet anything other than your veterinarian prescribed formula. Any treats, chews, medicated flavoured tablets, dental chews etc. can interfere with results and lead to a reoccurrence of allergic symptoms. Even the use of pet flavoured toothpaste can cause a reaction!

Don’t – leave out food, garbage or other materials that your pet can reach and ingest without your knowing – this will interfere with the trial results.

Do – remain patient with your pet and your veterinary team. Food trials take time…. a few months of consistency is definitely worth your dog’s lifetime of comfort and improved health!

Do – contact us if you have any questions or concerns – we’re here to help!!

Submitted by Van Isle Veterinary Hospital (some info courtesy of Royal Canin)


Get a Cupcake and Support BC Animals in Need During Treat Week (Feb 24 - Mar 1, 2020)

Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is super excited to be hosting our 4th annual cupcake day fundraiser! BCSPCA celebrates “Treat Week” across the Province from Feb 24th – March 1st 2020 where business, pet owners and animal lovers can bake up a storm and sell treats with the proceeds going to BC animals in need.

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Friday, March 19, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 250.334.8400. We will take a history of your pet from outside your car, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. Once the examination is finished, the Doctor will either call you or come out to talk to you to discuss the treatment etc for your pet. For those who do not have a mobile phone, an easy knock at the door will work the same way!

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. We are OPEN and temporarily operating as a 24-hour hospital.

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the Online Store, visit our website.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

6. Online consultations are now available! If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital