Finding a good veterinarian was always hard. The health of your animal is an important thing, and looking for the proper care is a high priority amongst pet owners. But a shortage of vets in general has become an issue over the years and this shortage may be getting nothing but worse, as reports suggest.
These days, doctors in general are almost impossible to find. Here in Montreal, the issue is quite severe, many coming to the city to study medicine, but upon graduation they leave for what they believe are greener pastures, and truthfully perhaps they are.
That leaves many in this city and others like it without the proper care. Millions upon millions waiting for family doctors, stuck only to receive subpar healthcare from doctors pulling double and triple shifts at any of the many hospitals’ emergency rooms and clinics around the cities in question.
Why is there a shortage of veterinarians?
But this was an example just to show that there are issues regarding a shortage of medical personnel for humans, but as it turns out, the problem—this shortage—has also started to affect animals and the veterinarians who serve them, as stated, and the problem can worsen as time goes on.
In a piece published at The Atlantic a little over a year ago, the issue was already a massive problem. The subject of the piece, a couple with a cat, had called an astounding 50 veterinarians in order to get help with their cat—something they thankfully received.
But others haven’t been so fortunate—if needing to go through 50 vets is fortunate. This was in Cleveland.
Just this week, the CBC published a piece on the shortage of veterinarians and a familiar culprit is being cited as the reason for the rise in shortages…
If you were thinking The Covid-19 Pandemic, you’d be correct, dear readers.
Zoe’s Animal Rescue co-director, Kath Oltsher, based out of Calgary, stated:
"“There is an unbelievable shortage and it’s happened since the pandemic…We have so many dogs now and so many cats now, I think we’re well over what our system can handle…We are now looking at booking up to a month out in order for us to help people prevent their animals from having more babies. … We’re not able to handle the amount we have now…The crisis is real. So real.”"
And as the piece over at CBC suggests (link above), Calgary has the highest rate of pet owners in Canada. Nick Barbaza, who is a veterinarian from over at the Glenora Family Pet Clinic adds:
"“When they cannot get that care, it can be very tough…As a result, the pets are going to suffer, or prices are going to increase — and mental health, we’re struggling. People are angry, and we’re trying to help everybody, but it’s only so much we can do.”"
And despite that the University of Calgary has received funds in order to train more vets, the time involved in getting them on the field can only make the situation worse in the interim.
If you look at a piece published over at thevetservice.com, the crisis is as real as the above-mentioned Kath Oltsher suggests, and for some of the supposed larger more financially set countries the world over.
Countries with a massive shortage of vets include: New Zealand, the USA, Canada, Australia, Ireland and even the rest of the UK. The site kind of suggests that if you want to be guaranteed a job and you love animals, perhaps a career in veterinary medicine is one for you.
Something to think about young readers, and heck even for you older readers looking for a new lease on life: It’s never too late.
Are there any of you who are a veterinarian amongst our readership? Do you want to chime in on the need for more doctors of your kind? Feel free to let us know in the comments.