Summer seems to be winding down, with some leaves already turning color. The season is changing but COVID-19 remains with us and probably will for the future.
Despite our province lifting restrictions (and very recently reinstating some of them) most veterinary facilities have maintained some level of protective measures throughout. I really would like to stress that these measures are not meant to make it difficult for our clients, or to inhibit the liberties of the people we serve. Our goal is to provide care for your animals, and to maintain safety for our co-workers and for everyone coming into our facility. If we were to have to close our doors because of workplace safety issues (and workplace safety is something the government requires from us) we could not continue to serve you and your animals.
Somehow the stress on the veterinary community has been overwhelming. I don’t even know why the workload has increased as much as it has within the last 15 months. I am sure it is multifactorial. There is an abundance of new pets which have been adopted by a lot of people, as well as the way we are working has changed with all these extra measures for safety slowing down workflow. And I do understand that this can be frustrating, as much for us as for you, our clients.
For us in the veterinary field the situation has had very surprising consequences. The work-stress has become very intense, and for some people it has become too much. Did you know that the suicide rate in veterinary medicine is one of the highest of all professions? And why is this? I believe the root of it is because veterinary professionals are caught in between the desire to help animals to the best of their ability, and the expectations that we can and should do everything in our power to help, but also often in the light of a misunderstanding for the cost for “everything possible”. (This is where pet insurance can come in handy).
From my perspective I have been blessed in my workplace with most clients being very understanding for the situation we have to work in. I wish for all of us, veterinary professionals and clients, that we can work together to help our beloved pets live the best life possible, and that requires patience from all of us and understanding for situations which can be stressful.
I hope we can continue to work well together to make our world a better place!