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Idaho vets must keep pets — and people — healthy during pandemic. Here’s how they do it

Schellhaas said the Humane Society clinic, like many others, has pared down its services to the essentials.

“We’re not doing routine care,” she said. “We’re not giving vaccinations unless they adopted a puppy from us.”

Instead, they’re focusing on emergency care, including dogs hit by cars, injured in fights or with intestinal blockages from eating foreign objects.

“Most of our visitors are low income, that’s our target market and who we primarily serve,” Schellhaas said. “We’re really starting to see people who weren’t low income before who have lost their jobs and are now in that bracket. We know those numbers are going to continue to grow as this goes on.”

Schellhaas said the shelter clinic offers grants and payment plans and tries to provide emergency medical care regardless of an owner’s ability to pay.

And there’s been another silver lining: Schellhaas said the Idaho Humane Society has seen “really great numbers” for adoptions and fosters out of its shelter, though its intake has been limited during the pandemic.

“We are adopting our dogs within a matter of hours,” Schellhaas said, adding that more than 150 animals have been placed in foster homes since the beginning of March.

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