veterinarian labour shortage
Veterinarian Tara Montgomery examines a cat in her Mississauga clinic. (REUTERS/J.P. Moczulski)

Canada’s veterinary sector — which serves pet owners and the animal production sector — is facing a severe labour shortage. 

“The shortages are dire and lead to very undesirable situations,” said Dr. Marco Veenis, director with the Society of B.C. Veterinarians. 

Veenis cited an animal hospital in Prince George, B.C. that shortened its hours in April and now closes by 6 p.m. weekdays. It has no vets available on weekends because the city simply doesn’t have enough vets to keep up with the demand. 

“There have been instances where animals just didn’t get timely care and died as a result or had increased suffering,” Veenis said.

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Stephanie Babych is a journalist based in Calgary. She was a reporter for the Calgary Herald and Sun for four years, and is a graduate of Mount Royal University’s journalism program. During her time...