Let’s Celebrate World Vet Day

CMA Vet review Ever moaned about your vet? You are not alone. Veterinary care can be expensive and it’s easy to overlook the fact that owning a companion animal is a privilege, not a right.

However erratic, access to the NHS which is largely free at source hides the true cost of human care. So it can be a shock when vet bills quickly reach three figures.

It might surprise you to learn that vets are not always paid very much. Vet students study for a minimum of 4 years and graduate with an average debt of £70,000. Starting salaries average £32,000 and 50+ hour weeks are standard, including anti-social hours and unpredictable hours.

Between 30% and 60% of vets are injured at work and injuries, even in small animal practice, can be life-changing.

Overheads for running practices can be very high and vets are legally bound by the Veterinary Cascade to prescribe drugs using a strict protocol which means that they do not always have control over what drug is offered.

Veterinary work can be very rewarding but also very stressful. Vets in the UK are 3-4 times more likely to commit suicide than the general population.

There are problems within the veterinary industry that the Competition and Markets Authority are currently addressing. However, in the meantime, give your vet a break. Take a breath before you are about to complain and consider matters from there veterinary staff member’s point of view.

It will make you both feel better.

If you are finding it difficult to take your companion animal to the vet book a Happy Vet Visit Course. Your vet will thank you for it and so will your companion.

Full Marks To EFRA

Full Marks To EFRA The EFRA Committee has always been a champion for animal welfare and is now putting pressure on the government to enact some of the legislation that they promised originally in their manifesto.

The report acknowledges that it is not just missing legislation but improvement that is required to current legislation in addition to providing sufficient resources to police and enforce it.

In particular as far as dogs are concerned, they look at breeding, imports and illegal veterinary procedures. There is a recommendation that all breeders be registered, regardless of the number of litters that they produce. They also recommend reducing the number of litters produced annually to 2 before a licence is required.

There has been huge growth in canine fertility clinics which can operate without any regulation and with unqualified staff. They seem to be used mostly to produce dogs that have been bred so badly that they cannot mate or give birth without human intervention, in particular bull breeds and pugs. Some are performing illegal C-sections without a vet and some are advertising their services specifically for breeding aggressive dogs.

Thousands of dogs are being imported into the UK, many illegally on Pet Passports. Some have forged papers. There is a huge risk of importing diseases, including rabies, and there is concern that cases of brucellosis are increasing, with zoonotic transmission having occurred between an owner and a dog imported from Belarussia.

There are many very good recommendations in this report and it is to be hoped that some legislation can be enacted before the general election.