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February 21, 2018

Qualifications to host a Purple Cat clinic:


Need to schedule a minimum of 35 cats. No more than 25 female cats total. 50 cats total max.

All cats need to be in carriers prior to Dr. Angie arriving at your location. Dr. Angie cannot assist with trapping.

You will be responsible for scheduling the public cats.

You will need to provide 1-2 adult volunteers to work the day of the clinic.

Purple Cat will need access to clean running water, toilet, and electrical outlet.

A shelter will be needed to house the cats in their carriers before and after surgery. This shelter will need to be heated during cold weather. A garage works well.

Payment is due in cash or certified check day of the clinic.

2019 prices:
$55 Feral/farm/colony cat; includes mandatory ear tip, rabies, and 3-way vaccine
$65 Pet female cat, vaccines additional: $10 rabies, $10 3-way vaccine
$45 Pet male cat, vaccines additional: $10 rabies, $10 3-way vaccine
$35/$55 Humane Society or Rescue, vaccines additional: $10 rabies, $10 3-way vaccine

To schedule a Purple Cat clinic after the above qualifications have been met:

Contact Dr. Angie Ruppel: Mobile: 715-419-1989, Email: afruppel@gmail.com, Facebook messenger


Preparing for your Purple Cat clinic:

Appoint one person in charge of scheduling. Their phone number will be needed for folks to call when scheduling.
Advertise on Facebook, newspaper, radio, humane societies etc.


Make a spreadsheet with each client’s first and last names, cell number, the number of cats, sex of cats, which services they desire (outdoor/ear tip cats vs indoor pet cat), payment owed.

Communicate with clients three times prior to the clinic. 1st communication is on the day they schedule, 2nd communication is one week prior to the Purple Cat clinic, 3rd client communication is on the day before the Purple Cat clinic. Texting is the preferred method of communicating as the clients are most likely to get the information. It is also the fastest method compared to email and voice phone call.

1st client communication within 1-2 days they initially contact you to schedule:

  • Welcome client by name.

  • Date and location of the clinic they are scheduled for.

  • Address of clinic.

  • Note to have cats in clean carriers, one cat per carrier.

  • Cost of services.

  • Note to have payment in cash or certified check at surgery check-in.

  • Surgery check-in time.

  • Plan for discharge time.


Tell the client to bring “New Client Form” filled out one per cat. This form is found on the website www.purplecatvet.com under “forms”.

Tell clients to find pre-surgical instructions and discharge instructions at the same place on the website.

Tell clients that all cats will need to be in a warm shelter for 36 hours after surgery. This is especially important during cold weather.

Thank client for spaying/neutering.

2nd client communication approx. 1 week prior to the clinic:

  • Remind client on date/time/location they are scheduled.

  • Ask the client to contact you ASAP if they need to cancel as there is a waiting list.

  • Suggest a frontline treatment for fleas prior to the appointment as some of the cats come from the outdoors and may expose the others to fleas.


3rd client communication day before clinic:

  • Remind clients of check-in time.

  • Give specific instructions on where to bring cats, i.e. “ring doorbell and I will meet you” or “walk into the house, the front door of the porch will be open and I will be waiting for you”.

  • Remind clients to bring “New Client Form” with them.

  • Ask clients to make sure carriers are clean and labeled with their name (masking tape and sharpie works well).

  • Tell the client to only send old towels with cats and that any soiled towel/blanket will be thrown in the garbage and not returned to the client.

  • Remind clients that only cash and a certified check are accepted.

  • Remind clients to remove food after midnight and refer to pre-surgical instructions on the website for more details.

  • Remind clients that outdoor cats will need to be in a warm shelter for 36 hours following surgery.

  • Ask if they have any last questions.

Day of Purple Cat clinic:

Dr. Angie and her technician(s) will arrive at your location between 8 and 9 am. It will take 30 minutes to set up for surgery. Surgeries will start right away after set up is complete and continue until all are finished. Usually, surgeries are completed between 5 and 6 pm. Dr. Angie and her technician will take a 15-minute break for lunch around 1 pm.

Surgeries usually take place in a small trailer set up to be a surgery suite. The cats will be rotated in and out of the trailer by a volunteer then you provide.

If your facility has a clean and minimally furnished room inside the building, Dr. Ruppel may opt to have the clinic there. With this set-up, all equipment and supplies will be brought into the building when she arrives that morning. You will need one or two volunteers to check in patients. At check-in you will confirm pre-surgical instructions have been met, collect completed “New Client Form”, collect payment in cash or certified check, and discuss plan/time of discharge.

Cats will do best if you cover each carrier with a towel sprayed with Feliway.

It is expected that there will be at least 12 cats waiting in cat carriers when Dr. Angie arrives on the morning of the clinic. There should be another 12 cats getting ready to load into carriers. This is especially important when all the cats are coming from the same location such as a humane society or a large colony of cats. When the cats are not ready in carriers to load into the trailer, valuable surgery time is wasted. This is an important area where a volunteer or two will be necessary.

Cats will need to be in a CLEAN cat carrier or a live trap. One cat per carrier. It is very important that the carriers, inside and out, have been cleaned so as not to contaminate the surgery suite. Carriers should be labeled with the owner’s name and the cat's name.

Additionally, Dr. Ruppel will provide you with Purple Cat labels to fill out and place on the carriers. These labels are used as a second layer of insurance that we perform the correct services on the pet. We do not want to accidentally ear tip a companion inside cat! Blankets or towels can be placed into the carrier. However, if the blankets get soiled by urine or feces, they will be thrown away in the garbage and not returned.

Cats may be exposed to fleas and upper respiratory infections. If possible, it is recommended to place a topical flea treatment. Frontline is best and can be purchased over the counter without a prescription.
Additionally, a distemper vaccine will help prevent contagious upper respiratory infections. This vaccine needs to be given at least 2 weeks prior to exposure for it to work. Cats can go home anytime starting 2 hours after their surgery is completed. A volunteer that you provide will be needed to discharge the cats. Most clinics find it easiest to discharge in waves throughout the day instead of doing them all at 7 pm. If discharging throughout the day, the volunteer in charge of discharges will be responsible for knowing which cats are finished and can go home at that time.

After surgery discharge instructions can be found on the www.purplecatvet.com website under “forms”. Every client should go home with a paper copy of these discharge instructions and the volunteer doing discharges should be comfortable going through the discharge instructions with the client.

On the surgery discharge instructions, Dr. Angie’s personal cell phone number is listed. If clients have any concerns about the health of their cat in the first few days after surgery, it is important to Dr. Angie that clients communicate their concern with her. They should not hesitate to call or text. Important reasons to call include lack of appetite, low activity or vomiting. Please inform every client of this when they pick up their cat after surgery.

Once surgeries are completed, Dr. Angie or her technician will walk through the recovery area and verify that all cats are awake after surgery. Those still sleeping will receive a reversal drug by injection. After this walkthrough, Dr. Angie will collect payment and give a receipt if requested.

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April 21, 2018

I often get phone calls about litters of kittens with “eyes full of gunk” and questions follow wondering what they can do to help the kittens.  These are usually kittens on farms with high numbers of other cats living on the farm. I call this condition Kitten Conjunctivitis.

 

The cause of this Kitten Conjunctivitis is usually a virus.  Herpes, Chlamydia, and Calici virus are the most common. Although these are viruses, veterinarians often prescribe antibiotics to treat and prevent secondary (opportunistic) infections.

 

If the kittens are thinner than normal, not eating well, have noses full of snot and sneezing a ton, then take them to your veterinarian as soon as you can as this condition can be fatal.  However, if they are full of energy and eating well, then my can try some things at home first.

 

There are a few things you can try at home before taking the litter of kittens to your veterinarian:

 
  • Make sure kittens (and mom if still nursing) are moved to a location that is not crowded with other cats as stress will add to the immune system stress and more severe symptoms.

  • Kitten location should be warm, dry, dust free and have plenty of fresh food and water.

  • Wipe the kittens eyes with a warm wet washcloth several times a day.  If any kittens eyes are glued shut due the the dry drainage then gently open the eyes with the washcloth.

  • In some cases, topical antibiotic ointment will be needed.  My go to eye ointment, which you can buy right at Farm and Fleet is Terramycin (oxytetracycline with polymyxin B).  You will want to put this in the kittens eyes three times daily for at least 5-7 days. Keep cleaning the eyes before placing the ointment.   Note of caution: some kittens can be allergic to the eye ointment. If eyes do not start to improve within 2-3 days or eyes get worse and kittens rub eyes then they may be allergic to the medication.  Call your veterinarian in this case.

 

If you have tried these suggestions and the kittens are not improving within 2-3 days, then it is time to take them into your veterinarian.  The veterinarian will likely want to test them for some contagious diseases (Feline Leukemia Virus-FeLV and Feline Infection Viremia-FIV) and prescribe oral antibiotics.


You can easily prevent your kittens from getting this Kitten Conjunctivitis by vaccinating all cats on your farm.  The vaccine is called a 3-way vaccine or “distemper”. The vaccine doesn’t guard against every single virus that causes Kitten Conjunctivitis, but, by preventing some of the infections, the kittens own immune system will be able fight off the rest much easier.  The 3-way vaccine that your veterinarian carries is going to be the best quality vaccine. However, farms often cannot afford to have the veterinarian vaccinate the cats.  In that case, head down to Farm and Fleet and get their cat vaccination Rhinotracheitis-Calicivirus-Panleukopenia.
April 23, 2018

Answers to common questions for PurpleCatVet:

 

My cat might be pregnant.  Will you still spay her?

 

When faced with this possibility, the first thing to ask yourself is: do I want kittens?  Can I and and will I be responsible for ensuring the kittens find a loving home? If you can be responsible for the kittens being placed in a home that will provide not only food and shelter but also vaccinations and spay/neuter surgery, then yes, let her have the kittens and do not bring her to be spayed.

 

However, if you are not prepared to raise kittens, then you should consider having her spayed.  Your pregnant female cat will be spayed and have her uterus and ovaries removed along with any kitten fetuses.

 

Sometimes, we do not know that a female is pregnant until we start the surgery.  Because the anesthesia will potentially harm the kittens, we will go ahead and spay her.  This is clearly stated on your surgery consent form.

 

Cats are pregnant for about 62-63 days.  If you think she might be pregnant and want her to have the kittens, then wait on her surgery for 2 months.  During this time keep her inside exclusively to determine if she is going to have kittens or not.

 

I think my cat has fleas.  Can I still bring her?

 

All cats, whether they are indoor exclusively or indoor/outdoor or ferral, have the potential to have fleas.  All cats should be on a flea preventative. Please place a Frontline, Revolution or Bravecto on your cat 24 hours prior to his/her surgery if you think there are fleas present.  

 

In order to remove and prevent all fleas from affecting pets in your house, the following procedure must be strictly followed:

  • All cats and dogs should have a high quality flea treatment monthly for 3 months minimum.  (Veterinary exclusive products are the best such as Frontline and Bravecto).

  • All bedding (human and pet) and rugs should be washed in hot water and dried at high temperature.

  • All hard floors should be mopped with hot water.

  • All carpet needs to be vacuumed and the vacuum cleaner bag thrown away.  Canister-type vacuums should have the canister contents tossed and filters cleaned.

  • Consider the outdoor environment where rabbits and other small animals could be hiding/sleeping and dropping flea eggs.  These areas are a continual source of re-infection and should be blocked off from your pets. Treatment of these areas with insecticides is idea.

 

Can you be my regular veterinarian?

 

Purple Cat Mobile Veterinary Clinic is exclusively a low-cost spay/neuter cat only clinic at this time.  In order to keep costs down, it is necessary that the clinic only perform cat spays and neuters and select vaccinations.  

 

Our surgeon and founder, Dr. Angie Ruppel, works several days per week at the Northern Lakes Veterinary Clinic in Cumberland, WI.  Consider bringing your pets there to have her as your regular veterinarian.

 

This surgery is so much less than what my regular veterinarian charges.  How do I know this is a quality surgery?

 

Our surgeries are most certainly high quality and comparable to what your regular veterinarian would do.  We use the same anesthesia drugs and the same type of monitoring. There are several reasons we can charge less than your regular veterinarian.

 

The biggest reason we can offer low cost surgery is that we specialize in cat spays and cat neuters.  Working with only one species with only the need for sterilization surgery gives us the opportunity to become very fast and proficient.  This reduces the time needed to perform the surgeries and therefore we can perform more surgeries in a given time period for less cost.

 

The other most important reason we can offer low cost surgery is that we function with a very low number of paid staff members.   Because we have a very small mobile clinic and specialize in feline sterilization surgeries on, we do not need more than a few staff members.  We rely on word of mouth and the area shelters and humane societies to advertise for us.

 

Since you are not a regular veterinary clinic open 6 days a week, what do I do if my cat has a surgery complication?FA

If you have a concern about your cat following  his or her surgery at our clinic, and you think it is related to the surgery, please call the Purple Cat Mobile Veterinary Clinic phone number on your surgery discharge instructions.  We will return your call as soon as possible during normal business hours (8am-5pm) and often into the evening up to 9pm. If you have a concern outside of these hours, please contact the nearest 24 hour emergency clinic.  This includes Affiliated Emergency Veterinary Service in Duluth, MN at (218)302-8000 and Animal Emergency and Referral Center in Oakdale, MN at (651)501-3766.

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