With figures suggesting that 85% of pet owners have registered their pet with a vet but an estimated 3.1 million pet dogs, cats and rabbits in the UK are still not registered, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) has joined forces with the British Veterinary Association (BVA) to launch a social media campaign during National Pet Month (1 April to 7 May) to highlight the benefits of registering pets with veterinary practices.
The joint ‘Pets Need Vets’ campaign shares 11 reasons why pet owners should register their animals with a vet, including easier access to treatment during emergencies, regular health checks for pets and tailored nutritional advice, and encourages them to use the Find a Vet service to find the right vet practice for them and their pet.
Figures released in the PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report in 2017 revealed that 85% of animal owners in the UK had already registered their pets with a vet, so this campaign aims to raise awareness amongst the remaining 15% of the value of doing the same.
Speaking about the campaign, British Veterinary Association President John Fishwick said: “Pets need vets to ensure their lifelong wellbeing, which is why it is concerning that a large number of pet owners in the country have not registered their animals with a practice. It is important that owners have access to reliable advice and veterinary care to be able to best look after their pets, and so we are calling on the profession to get involved in promoting the wealth of benefits that registering with a vet practice provides.”
RCVS President Professor Stephen May added: “Owning an animal is a huge responsibility, which is why access to professional veterinary advice is vital. With this campaign we aim to highlight some of the very considerable benefits of registering pets with a veterinary practice, and raise awareness amongst pet owners who have not yet registered of the value of having access to professional veterinary advice, expertise and treatment to keep their animals healthy. We would be delighted if practices across the country would help share these messages on their own social media accounts.”
Vets, vet nurses and veterinary practices can help spread the word on the value of registering pets by sharing campaign resources on social media using the hashtag ‘#petsneedvets’, downloading campaign resources and using the opportunity to encourage local pet owners to register with their practice.
To further highlight the value of veterinary care and the special bond between a veterinary professional and the animals under their care, BVA is also encouraging existing clients to share pictures of their pets at the vets online using the hashtags #lovemyvet and #lovemyvetnurse.
The Pets Need Vets campaign stems from the aim of the joint BVA and RCVS Vet Futures Action Plan to develop communications tools to assist the public’s understanding of veterinary costs and fees, and promote the value of veterinary care.
More information on the campaign and shareable resources are available from the RCVS website.