A veterinary hospital that was “completely devastated” by Storm Dennis, is set to re-open for emergency cases as the coronavirus crisis continues.
Valley Veterinary Hospital in Gwaelod y Garth, near Cardiff, will re-open its 24-hour emergency service next Monday, keeping strict social distancing guidelines from the RCVS in place.
The hospital is preparing to become a central hub to deal with emergency cases if practices in the area are forced to shut amid the pandemic.
It comes only two months after vets and 16 in-patients in the hospital had to be evacuated after the site was left under five feet of flood water when the River Taff burst its banks on 16 February.
Equipment worth several hundred thousand pounds, including CT scanner, digital x-ray machines, ultrasounds, oxygen generator, lab equipment and endoscopes were all destroyed by the flood damage.
The £2m pet hospital had opened only nine months ago, and is regarded as the most high-tech facility of its kind in Wales.
Now, new operating theatres, procedure areas, two prep areas and kennels have been created on the first floor, while a new £150,000 CT scanner will be installed in June to replace the one that was destroyed.
Hospital manager Chris Butler said: “It has been a major operation between the whole Valley Vets team, and the building team has worked wonders in a short space of time.
“It was unbelievable how much damage was done, and it was completely devastating after all the effort that went into building the new hospital.”
He added: “Everything has felt very bleak with the coronavirus pandemic but the re-opening of the hospital has given us a focus.
“Practices locally are starting to close as we reach the peak of the pandemic, so we are going to be increasingly relied upon by colleagues in the veterinary profession and pet owners.”
EDS Ltd director Steve Phillips said: “The flood was devastating for the Valley Veterinary Hospital team, and we were shocked at the power and destruction of the flood water.
“We’re delighted that, in the space of four weeks, we have them back and working with the top floor all re-designed to accommodate the loss of the ground floor.”