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Spike in pet owners seeking travel guidance
The uncertainty surrounding Brexit has led to a huge rise in pet owners visiting their vet for advice on travel.
Brexit uncertainty fuelling frustration and anxiety among pet owners

The uncertainty surrounding Brexit has led to a huge rise in pet owners visiting their vet for advice on travel, according to the BVA.

Figures from the BVA’s Voice of the Veterinary Profession Survey reveal more than 8 in 10 companion animal vets (85 per cent) have been approached about pet travel, with many owners expressing anger or frustration.

Some 74 per cent of vets reported seeing a rise in enquiries since November, with 40 per cent describing a significant spike. Vets said they had owners directing anger towards them over the uncertainty, additional testing requirements and longer wait times.

Around half (48 per cent) of vets said that could respond to most of the questions about pet travel. However, many felt unable to answer some queries owing to the current uncertainty over Brexit timeframes and what form it will take.

The survey also revealed that clients who need to travel regularly are feeling especially inconvenienced. This includes dog show or Canicross participants, those with holiday homes abroad, and people travelling from Northern Ireland to the Republic of Ireland.

Vets reported that while some people are getting rabies serology tests done now to prepare for all eventualities, many are adopting a ‘wait and see’ approach to avoid the additional costs and steps involved.

BVA president Simon Doherty said: “It is understandable that the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit and expected changes to the pet travel requirements are stoking anxiety and frustration among pet owners and prompting a lot of questions.

“We also remain sensitive to the particular lack of clarity over the movement of pets between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

“We would reiterate our advice to pet owners to discuss any summer travel plans with their vet now to avoid disappointment and ensure that all the tests and checks required in the event of a no-deal situation have been completed in good time.

“Leaving the EU with no agreement in place could lead to owners facing longer waits to get their pet cleared for travel and higher costs for the required vaccination, treatments and health certificates each time they leave the UK.”

For guidance on pet travel after Brexit visit the BVA and government websites. 

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Vets asked to opt-in to Scottish SPCA fostering programme

News Story 1
 The Scottish SPCA is encouraging veterinary practices to opt into its new fostering programme, by agreeing to register foster animals when approached by one of the foster carers.

The programme goes live in August 2021, and will help to rehabilitate animals under the Scottish SPCA's care until they are able to be properly re-homed. The programme will help the animals to receive care and attention in a stable and happy home environment, as some animals do not cope with a rescue and re-homing centre environment as well as others.

Specific information for veterinary practices on the new programme can be found at www.scottishspca.org/veterinarysurgeons 

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News Shorts
Webinar provides insight into old age pets

A new webinar providing insights into the BSAVA PetSavers Old Age Pets citizen science project is now available free of charge to its members via the BSAVA Library

The webinar presents an exclusive insight into the research process and progression of the study, which aims to help veterinary professionals and owners provide the best care for their senior dogs.

It also discusses the study's research methods, the researchers' personal interests in this area of study, and how they envisage the findings being used to create a guidance tool to improve discussions between vets and owners about their ageing dogs.