After hours vet care needed

After hours vet care needed in the Alberni Valley, reader says.

To the Editor,

Re: After-hours pet care in the Alberni Valley.

Pets are family members, our best friends and to some they are our children.

We worry when they are ill and lose sleep to watch over them. The grief we feel when they die takes a piece of our heart. To hear that vets don’t answer the call, we don’t understand.

We rely on our vets for special care to safeguard our pets throughout their lives. Why are they not there in emergency?

My dogs have had wonderful care from Valley vets from birth to the end of life.

For 40 years Dr. Ken Aylard was my vet, and he answered many emergency calls at night. Sadly, before Dr. Aylard, I watched ill or injured neighbourhood pets disposed of by end of a .22 rifle. Thankfully, this is 2013.

I say my prayers, but I have not needed a vet in an emergency situation in awhile. But I know that can change in an instant.

I heard from a neighbour who made that trip over the hump to the Nanaimo pet ER. Because of that reason, he told me, this would be his last dog they would own in Port Alberni.

Winter weather, the hump and a frantic pet owner with an injured animal —not a good combination. Accidents will happen.

There are also people who don’t drive or don’t have a vehicle.

Maybe a solution might be a pet paramedic ambulance service to evaluate the animal or rotating emergency on-call night among vets in the Valley. Not just for your own vet patients.

Even if a pet cannot be saved and all vets can do is hold our hand while we cry.

Let it be a familiar face that ends the suffering of our loved pet.

It would be a comfort to us to have you at our side.

M. Carniel,

Port Alberni