Vet committee to discuss alternatives

District farmers are still searching for a way to have a large-animal veterinarian located here.
The vet committee will meet tomorrow (Thursday) to discuss its options after the provincial government turned down an application for veterinary designation and funding here.
“We’ve been denied on our regional application for budgeting reasons,” committee chair Nico Veldhuisen confirmed.
But despite having been turned down, the committee will continue to look at means of seeking provincial funding.
“It seems to be you can come up with a business plan and ask for a lump sum amount,” noted committee member Kim Jo Bliss. “That would enable [Dr. Chris Cannon of the Nor-West Animal Clinic] to get another person and change the workload.”
Currently, Dr. Cannon and Dr. Dan Pierroz offer scheduled visits to farms twice a week—on Tuesdays and Thursdays. But the pair also must run their animal clinic in Fort Frances, which restricts them from making other trips to the west-end of the district
“It’s the emergency thing that runs into the problem,” noted Bliss. “That’s one of the most important parts of getting a vet.
“The option of shooting a cow is just not an option for some people,” she added.
There also is concern that Cannon and Pierroz are being overworked.
“The committee members and the farmers think that we have a great vet, but we all know the size of the district and he could spend two days in the district and only see two people,” said Bliss.
“He’s doing what he can do [but] we’re still at a limited service,” noted Veldhuisen. “He’s doing the best he can.”
Although the province initially had indicated it would determine whether the district would receive the designation back in April, the announcement was delayed and the committee didn’t receive word it had been turned down until early September.