Finding a vet for your pet might take a while – Basement Medicine

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Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, almost every fifth household has got a new dog or cat, according to ASPCA research. With the vast majority of Americans either unemployed or working from home, many people decided that the time was right to take on the responsibilities of a new furry friend.
With a boom in new pets, getting them the first-line veterinary care they need can be tedious and time-consuming. Emergency care facilities like Burlington Emergency Veterinary Specialists (BEVS) have average waiting times of more than 8 hours, and some vets book two months for new clients.
“This is not necessarily just a pandemic problem,” says Dr. Josephine Raezer of the Shelburne Veterinarian Hospital. “I have friends who practice in different fields, mostly in Arizona (and) California, it seems everyone is busier than ever. Granted, three states – Arizona, California, Vermont – are not the whole world, but that’s a trend, only vets are busier too. “
Although the Shelburne Veterinarian Hospital is still accepting new customers, it still takes about two weeks for a new pet to be seen by the doctor. “I would say we make exceptions all the time,” said Raezer. “I had a patient the other day who had a swollen toe and she was new and she had an appointment in two weeks but she obviously had a problem sooner so we’re trying to accommodate that.”
The Tanneberger Animal Clinic in St. Albans has recently experienced a business boom. “Our workload has practically doubled,” said veterinary technician Kelley Lee. “We’re still taking on new customers, but we’re definitely affected by this shortcoming.”
On September 9th, the American Veterinary Medical Association published an article entitled “A Day in the Life of an Emergency Veterinary Clinic.” Malinda Larkin, Senior News Editor at AVMA and author of the article, uses this article to discuss the veterinary impact of COVID.
“Prior to COVID-19, the veterinary profession was struggling with staff turnover, productivity and efficiency issues,” Larkin said. “Now these issues have been exacerbated by delayed customer visits and pent-up consumer demand. According to national data from analytics firm VetSuccess, the number of appointments in veterinary practices has increased by a total of 4-6%, which is healthy, if not exploding growth. “
The veterinary offices in Vermont, but also in other states, are experiencing increasing demand.
“This healthy visitor growth, coupled with additional productivity declines related to COVID-19 and increased staff turnover, has had an impact on workload and created a general sense of business.”
Some pet owners have even noticed the increased need for veterinarians. “I had a list of about five vets I wanted to call to get an appointment,” said first-time pet owner Sophie Forest. “I ended up calling almost ten and only two took in new patients.”
“They were all there for the middle of October!” Forest continued and told about the vet-hunt process. “I literally called when my puppy was 2 weeks old.”
Finding a new veterinarian is not always easy, and it can be even more difficult to find a veterinarian you can trust.