Emergency veterinary service needed

A 24-hour type service would not only be beneficial to our beloved pets but also to our peace of mind

Many of us have pets and in many cases they are an integral part of the family. From time to time, we have to take our pets in to a veterinarian for treatment or follow-up. This is a normal routine thing usually done through the day and makes us feel better that our pets are looked after by competent medical practitioners.

Let’s take this a step further. For us as human beings, we seem to have emergency medical services available to us. It may be that an ambulance team with a paramedic treats us in an emergency or that Penticton Regional Hospital treats us in an emergency. Either way, we get almost immediate treatment.

Now let’s look at this from a different perspective. That perspective is from the standpoint of our beloved pets. Do they have an option such as we do for 24-hour treatment? Not really. However, at the risk of offending our local practicing veterinarians, we did find one that does offer 24-hour on-call after-hours service, thankfully.

Having said that, when time is a major factor and your beloved pet faces an extreme emergency situation, the closest 24-hour full emergency staffed emergency animal hospital is in Kelowna. Can you imagine the stress on you and the predicament of your pet if you could not reach your own veterinarian or you had to make several phone calls until you acquired the services of a veterinarian. It could happen here in Penticton.

Again, in no way do I want to malign any of our Penticton veterinarians. Most of us have regular veterinarians that we deal with because we respect their talents and appreciate their services. It would be comforting to know that there might be a similar emergency service here in town. It need not be a single 24/7/365 operator. It could be an agreed upon rotating weekly schedule encompassing any and all veterinarians who want to participate. It is not that there would be a plethora of pet incidents, but it would provide peace of mind for owners of pets just to know that such a service might be available.

Recently, as some of you may be aware, my dog and my wife suffered trauma from an attack by a rottweiler. Fortunately, I was able to contact Dr. Steve Harvey who opened his animal hospital and was able to provide the immediate and necessary treatment for my dog.

A 24-hour type service would not only be beneficial to our beloved pets but also to ourselves for the peace of mind that it could bring. Veterinarians of Penticton, are you listening?

Ray Klassen