Veterinarians across Australia have been urged to use Saturday as a weekend to sign up pet lovers.
Key points:Vetinarians are being urged to book a vet on a weekendPet owners can contact vets for appointment appointments on a busy weekendThe Animal Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is urging veterinarians to book on SaturdaysPet owners should not assume they can book appointments on the same dayPet owners who don’t have a vet can call vets for appointmentsPet owners may also call animal hospitals for advice on a non-urgent issueA total of 25,000 vets are on duty on Saturdays.
Veterinarians say this can make a big difference to the lives of pets and their owners, who are often struggling to pay bills and feed their pets.
Vetins are already available on Saturdays from 8:00am to 12:00pm (AEST) in most states, and some cities and towns in Queensland.
But they say this weekend is a perfect time to book.
“We can’t give you an exact number, but it’s very likely that at least 30% of vets are doing this on Saturdays, and that’s an important number for us,” said Dr Stephen Stoner, head of the AVMA’s Veterinary Emergency Clinic.
Dr Stoner said it was vital to book appointments early.
“A number of veterinarians have been doing it this weekend, and it’s really helped us get a lot of people booked on Saturdays,” he said.
“I think we can give a pretty good estimate of how many people are doing it, because there’s a lot more people than we had previously thought there were.”
Dr Stoor said some vets had booked appointments at the same time as their regular weekend appointments, but were still unable to attend because of busy schedules.
“It’s really important that we do it this time because it’s a Saturday, and we need to get the most people booked,” he told ABC Local Radio.
“If we don’t get the best number of people in, then it’s going to be a bit of a problem.”
And if we can do it over the weekend, that’s great, but if we have to wait until Monday or Tuesday, it’s not good for the vets.
“Vets are being asked to book their appointments at vets.com.au on Saturdays between August 6 and August 11.
The AVMA said vets should book on Saturday nights, or they risk not getting a vet in.”
There are some very strict restrictions around Saturday appointments and we’re asking all vets to be careful with how they book their appointment,” Dr Stoner added.”
They need to make sure they don’t overbook.
“Pet owners are being encouraged to contact their local vet on Saturdays to book an appointment on the weekends.
If you are unable to find a vet near you, you can also call the AVCA’s Pet Emergency Helpline on 1300 333 000.