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COVID-19 FAQ and Resource Center

Posted on: March 13, 2020 by SmartPak

Updated 8/11/2020

1. What safeguards or additional measures has SmartPak taken to remain fully operational and protect customers and employees?

With Massachusetts’ emergency order, issued on 3/23/2020, to close non-essential workplaces for two weeks, we want to reassure our customers that SmartPak will remain open and operational – as long as permitted by law, regulation and for employee safety – to support your pet and animal needs. 

 In its emergency order, Massachusetts issued a list of designated businesses that provide essential services that are requested to continue operating their facilities. This list is based on federal guidance issued last week.  SmartPak qualifies as an essential service of “animal agriculture workers to include those employed in veterinary health; manufacturing and the distribution of animal medical materials, animal vaccines, animal drugs, feed ingredients, feed and bedding…” and as such “….are urged to continue operations during this period of emergency…”    

We will continue to follow national and local guidelines, in order to provide a safe and secure environment for our people and customers, alike. Our facilities continue operating with the highest of manufacturing standards and we have also implemented additional precautions including: 

• Increased cleaning and sanitization utilizing CDC guidelines
• Requiring sick team members to stay home
• Limiting travel, reducing meetings and utilizing web-based meetings with outside vendors
• Practicing social distancing and asking many of our team members to work from home
• Working with our suppliers and vendors to ensure that we are well stocked and that they also have preparedness and safety measures in place so that you continue to have access to the products you need
• Continued monitoring of new developments with quick response and reaction so customers and employees remain safe and we continue to offer a world-class experience

In recognition of the tremendous dedication of operations employees who are essential to ensuring our customers receive the products they need, we have increased the hourly wage by $2.00 for hours that are worked onsite over the next 30 days.  We thank our operations team, as we do all our employees, for their continued commitment and efforts.  

2. Will your Natick, MA retail store remain open during this time?

After a brief hiatus to prepare and ensure compliance with COVID-19 best practices, we are pleased to announce that curbside pickup is available again at the SmartPak retail store. The store’s curbside hours have been updated to: 

  • Monday through Friday, 9AM to 5PM
  • Saturday, 9AM to 1PM
  • Sunday, Closed

To best serve our local customers, we request that you call ahead to check product availability and place your order at 508-651-0045. Please note that we are only accepting payment via credit card at this time to minimize health risks. 

We will continue to follow national and local guidelines, which may result in sudden changes to hours or availability. We encourage customers to call ovisit our SmartPak Retail Store Facebook page for the latest updates. 

We look forward to when we are able to fully reopen the store, and thank you for your support as we strive to offer the safest and best experience possible while responding swiftly to an ever-changing situation. You can also place an order on SmartPak.comor contact our Horse Health Experts at 1-800-461-8898.  

3. When is my AutoShip order going to process and ship?

We have prioritized the processing and shipping of all AutoShip orders and are not currently experiencing delays. To review your next ship date, visit the AutoShip manager.

4. Am I at risk for COVID-19 from a package or products shipping from China, Italy or other impacted regions?

In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures. Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods and there have not been any cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods. Information will be provided on the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) website as it becomes available.


Further, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods, including food and drugs for humans and pets, and there have not been any cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. associated with imported goods.
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5. Can COVID-19 spread through food, animal feed or supplements?

SmartPak is monitoring information published by government agencies, the National Animal Supplement Council and the American Feed Industry Association. To date the scientific consensus is that food or animal food has not been identified as a likely source of this disease.

SmartPak is following our existing Food Safety Plan, Good Manufacturing Practices as well as implementing increased facility cleaning and employee awareness of proper hygiene protocol. These steps are in line with recommendations shared by government regulators including the guidance distributed by the Washington State of Agriculture:

From the USDA FAQs:
We are not aware of any reports at this time of human illnesses that suggest COVID-19 can be transmitted by food or food packaging. However, it is always important to follow good hygiene practices (i.e., wash hands and surfaces often, separate raw meat from other foods, cook to the right temperature, and refrigerate foods promptly) when handling or preparing foods.

6. Coronavirus and companion animals-what you need to know

As horse owners ourselves we know how challenging it is to stay up to date on the latest information regarding coronavirus (COVID-19) and its impact on companion animal health. As part of your horse health team, we have put together a list of resources so that you can access the most recent news from trusted sources.

Additionally, we would suggest that anyone who becomes ill from COVID-19 reach out to their veterinarian for specific instructions on caring for their animal.

American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA):
FAQs for Pet Owners

The AVMA is the nation’s leading advocate for the veterinary profession. Representing more than 95,000 members, we protect, promote and advance the needs of all veterinarians and those they serve.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
COVID-19 and Animals

CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

World Health Organization (WHO):
Can I catch COVID-19 from my pet?

WHO’s primary role is to direct and coordinate international health within the United Nations system. Working with 194 Member States, across six regions, and from more than 150 offices, WHO staff are united in a shared commitment to achieve better health for everyone, everywhere.

U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA):
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

The Food and Drug Administration is responsible for protecting the public health by ensuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, and medical devices; and by ensuring the safety of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation.

7. Can I make returns and/or exchanges at this time?

Yes! We are accepting returns and exchanges as normal. However, due to upholding COVID-19 safety measures and CDC guidelines in our warehouse, we are experiencing a delay in processing. For the most up-to-date expected processing time, please visit our Returns Information Center. We are working diligently to process returns and exchanges as quickly as possible while ensuring the safety of our customers and staff, and thank you for your patience.

8. Questions? Our experts are available

Call us at 1-800-461-8898

To email, live chat or text with us, visit our contact us page