World Veterinary Day May Be Over, But It’s Never Too Late To Say Thank You

Veterinarians play a critical role in society. However, the significance of their work is often misunderstood and, in a lot of cases, even underappreciated. So, as another World Veterinary Day comes to pass, let’s take this as an opportunity to reflect on the critical role that veterinarians play in the world at large. 

In addition to providing medical care for sick and injured animals, veterinarians also play a vital role in preventative health care, conducting research into new diseases, developing vaccines, pet vitamins, and other treatments. They also work closely with farmers and other agricultural workers to ensure the welfare of livestock and to prevent the spread of zoonotic diseases. In short, veterinarians perform a vital service that benefits us all, not just animals. 

To top it off, veterinarians have to accomplish these tasks under immense pressure from pet owners, farmers, and other stakeholders. It’s no surprise that veterinarians are most likely to abandon their profession or even worse. It’s only fitting then that this year’s World Veterinary Day is centered on resilience - something that our veterinary professionals truly need. 

So, as a way to help our veterinary heroes, we decided to shed some light on their struggles. We also asked our resident veterinarians, how we can make their jobs a little easier. Hopefully, we as a community can learn how to help our veterinary professionals become more resilient. 

Unseen Struggles of Veterinary Professionals 

Veterinary professionals are among the most dedicated and compassionate people in the world. They dedicate their lives to helping animals, and they often do so under difficult circumstances. The American Holistic Veterinary Medicine Association (AHVMA) even encourages its members to provide veterinary services free of charge to indigent pet owners.  

Many veterinary professionals work long hours, and they frequently see sick or injured animals. They also sometimes have to deal with difficult clients who may be angry or upset about their pet's condition. As a result of these challenges, veterinary professionals sometimes find it difficult to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Nevertheless, they continue to dedicate themselves to the care of animals, making a vital contribution to our world. 

Compassion Fatigue 

Veterinary professionals deal with a wide range of unique challenges, including caring for animals that are sick or injured and helping owners cope with the loss of a loved pet. However, this constant exposure to sickness and death can take a toll on veterinarians, leading to something known as "compassion fatigue." This state of mental and emotional exhaustion can stem from both chronic stress and repeated trauma, and it can have severe consequences for those who experience it. In veterinary medicine, compassion fatigue has become such a problem that the American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) felt it necessary to acknowledge the issue and offer our veterinarians some guidance. 

Unhealthy Work-Life Balance 

With the pandemic pet adoption craze, the number of new pet parents has risen dramatically. The demand for veterinary services, therefore, has reached an all-time high. Unfortunately, this thriving industry is plagued by a severe workforce shortage and an extremely high employee turnover rate. The lack of available staff combined with the constant stress of meeting the needs of demanding clients means that most veterinarians struggle to maintain a healthy work-life balance. 

In a way, the combination of unhealthy work balance and compassion fatigue are two problems that feed on each other. If left unchecked, these can cause even bigger problems for veterinary medicine in general.  

Rude and Non-Compliant Clients 

It's no secret that pet owners can be passionate about their fur babies. After all, pets are often considered members of our family, and we only want the best for them. But sometimes this passion can lead to rudeness towards the very people who are trying to help our furry friends - veterinarians. 

Unfortunately, pet owners sometimes forget veterinarians also have your pet’s health in their top priority. They may become angry or aggressive when their pet is sick, accusing the veterinarian of not doing enough to help. Or they may refuse to listen to advice, insisting on a treatment that may not be in the best interest of their pet. 

3 Best Ways to Thank Your Veterinary Professionals


Follow their instructions. 

As a pet owner, one of your most important responsibilities is to ensure that your animal gets proper care and treatment. This often involves following the advice and instructions of your veterinarian, who has specialized knowledge and experience when it comes to caring for animals. Whether it's administering dog vitamins or cat supplements or following up on vaccinations, there are many reasons why you should take your vet's recommendations seriously. 

For one thing, veterinarians undergo extensive training in order to ensure that they have the skills, knowledge, and judgment necessary to provide the best care for animals. This means that their recommendations will be based on a variety of factors, from an understanding of your animal's health history to their assessments of their physical condition. In addition, vets have access to a wide range of diagnostic tools that allow them to make accurate assessments at every stage of an animal's life. By following their instructions closely, you can trust that you are providing proper care for your pet and helping them stay happy and healthy for years to come.  

Be polite. 

Being a veterinarian can be a demanding and emotionally draining job. Veterinarians are constantly faced with sick and injured animals, and they often have to deliver bad news to pet owners. As a result, veterinarians have a high rate of burnout, and many suffer from depression and anxiety.  

It is essential that we be understanding of the challenges that veterinarians face and do what we can to support their mental health. We must also be patient when they are dealing with difficult cases and remember that their first priority is always the welfare of their patients. By showing veterinarians the respect and compassion they deserve, we can help to reduce the stress of their job and prevent them from reaching a breaking point. 

Update them with a wacky photo of their patient when they’re doing well. 

Veterinarians can only control what happens inside their offices or clinics. Once illnesses are cured and the medicines are dispensed, pet owners often no longer update veterinarians on how their former patients are doing. The best thing that vets can do to promote their patient’s long-term health is by prescribing holistic pet vitamins and supplements, and even then, they can only hope for the best that pet owners comply with their instructions. However, there’s nothing that says job well done to veterinary professionals than to see their patients doing well. So, sending your veterinarian a simple photo or video update should go a long way in reaffirming that they’re in the right profession. 

Final Thoughts  

Veterinarians play a vital role in protecting animal welfare and health. They are responsible for preventing and treating diseases of our beloved pets, as well as ensuring that we have adequate pet nutrition and promote responsible pet ownership. Without their dedication and hard work, the lives of both people and animals would be far worse off. So next time you see your vet, be sure to give them a big thank you!