Dog vaccine

Veterinarian warns of dog vaccine shortage after lockdown puppy boom

Pet owners have shared concerns about a possible shortage of vaccines for dogs – as well as cats – after a vet issued a warning to his patients.

A practice in Essex has emailed registered members this week telling them it needs to prioritize puppies, kittens and first year booster shots until the situation improves.

For all other animals, the Wylie Veterinary Center said annual vaccine boosters would be delayed by three months.

He says it’s safe to do and follows manufacturers’ recommendations.

In an email to customers, the center said: “At this time, we don’t know when the issue will be resolved, we are in constant contact with the vaccine manufacturers and there will be further updates at the moment. as we receive them. “

While there is no confirmed cause for a shortage or enough data to indicate how much of a problem in the UK this could be, the huge increase in the number of pets purchased during the nationwide lockdown could be a factor.

About 3.2 million households in the UK acquired a pet in the first year of the pandemic, according to the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association.

There has also been an increase in the number of animals abandoned or deposited in animal shelters. The Dogs Trust charity said it had seen a 35% increase in appeals related to dog abandonment in recent weeks.

When the UK reopened, many people started returning to work and may no longer be able to care for or pay for the animals they acquired during the lockdown.

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) also said it had warned of potential veterinary shortages associated with the end of free movement when the UK left the EU for a while.

He recently urged owners of potential vets to “think long and hard before adopting a new pet,” as veterinary practices across the country grapple with staffing shortages and a high demand for services.

Information from the veterinary regulator, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS), showed that between January and May 2021, 155 veterinarians came to work in the UK from the EU.

This compares to 533 over the same period in 2019.

Justine Shotton, President of the British Veterinary Association (BVA), said: “We hear anecdotally from members about a shortage of certain vaccines for pets and we are investigating the issue to identify the possible causes and extent. of the problem.

“Vets are currently working to prioritize vaccine supplies and can contact customers if delays are likely. We would like to stress that a short term delay should not be a cause of concern for the health of the pets or the public health. “

People who are concerned about their pet’s vaccine are encouraged to contact their veterinarian and ask what the procedure is. If he is unable to obtain the vaccine, there will usually be a delay and he should be able to explain exactly how long it will take.