Everything to know about vets open on Sunday
This page will let you know the details about vets open on Sunday, including costs, where to find a vet and whether location matters. The opening hours will also be explained.
Whether you are a pet owner, keep large or small animals for pleasure or are engaged in a commercial enterprise which involves livestock (for example animal husbandry or a livery stables), prompt veterinary attention when an animal becomes ill is one of the major necessities required for successful care.
As animals don’t chose when they become sick or get injured, access to vets open on Sunday is absolutely critical. If you haven’t yet located a suitable vet that is available exactly when you need them, even if it’s not on a weekday, consider the factors given below to help inform your choice.
Location, location, location
Although this mantra is commonly applied to choosing a home, it is equally pertinent when deciding on a suitable veterinary practice for your needs. If possible a practice should be close to where your animals are kept, whether that’s your home address in the case of household pets, business address if you run a farm or similar business. A locally based vet is helpful for a number of different reasons: In the event of an emergency they can often be on the scene far more quickly than a vet located some distance away. Call out costs are often less where travel distances are smaller, as mileage is lower and the time taken on your case is reduced.
If your animal’s health condition isn’t urgent, it’s easier to travel a short distance with your pet in order to access a regular appointment at the surgery. Generally animals aren’t particularly keen on travel, so a close surgery means they won’t be subjected to the unnecessary discomfort of a longer journey. It is also easier to continue a regular course of treatment, pop in to pick up medication or ask for advice if the veterinary practice is easily accessible.
Type of Practice
Although it is important to find vets open on Sunday, not every vet will have the necessary expertise to treat your animal. Just like human medicine, there are vets who are general practitioners and those who have particular knowledge and skills in just one branch of animal healthcare. Obviously it’s essential to ensure that the vet you chose is suitable for your animals. The majority of vets that are found in towns and cities specialise in small animal work. They tend to have experience of treating cats, dogs, rodents, domestic birds and other small creatures, which are commonly kept as pets.
In an emergency they can also normally treat larger mammals, but may struggle to provide appropriate care for reptiles, invertebrates and rare breeds.
Equine vets open on Sunday
If you have horses then an equine vet is absolutely essential. Not only do they have the correct skills to treat conditions which are specific to horses, but given the significant financial investment a good horse represents, it makes sense to ensure they receive the very best and most appropriate care. A country practice is more likely to have a suitably experienced vet, or look for one which states their expertise in this area.
Some vets work only with farm animals and are therefore an ideal choice for farmers with a dairy herd, sheep or pigs. Generally large animal specialists can advise on matters specific to farm animals, such as current legislation on animal transport, slaughter and ownership transfer as well as treating sick creatures.
For exotic pet owners, a vet with an appropriate background is vital. As the correct treatment of snakes, lizards and other reptiles is highly specific, responsible owners should get the details and register with reptile vets open on Sunday well before their animal requires medical intervention. This ensures your pet can receive the very best care should they fall ill.
Opening Hours for vets open on Sunday
The times at which animals can be seen by vets open on sunday at the surgery are normally highly specific for non-emergency cases. Most surgeries will have these hours displayed prominently on their door, website or other point of contact. Usually practices are open Monday to Friday, with most offering a morning and evening surgery. Whilst routine healthcare is commonly conducted during these hours, vets have an ethical duty to treat sick animals and will always do their utmost to treat an emergency case promptly should it be brought in to them.
Nearly all surgeries offer out-of-hours care, ensuring your animal can get veterinary attention should they become ill during the night, on a public holiday or at the weekend. Some veterinary practices will have one of their own vets on call when the surgery is shut, whilst others will pay for an outside agency to provide appropriate veterinary cover it they’re not able to do so. What this means is that if you call a vet out, you may not get the one that normally treats your animal, or even one that works for your preferred surgery.
Obviously in an emergency prompt treatment by a suitably qualified professional is essential, if you would like your animals to receive continuity of care if possible, look for vets open on Sunday or those which have extended opening hours which will give you the greatest possible chance of having your pet seen by the same vet. Animal owners should remember that almost all surgeries will charge a significant call out fee should you need to use the out-of-hours service, so it should only be used as an emergency option.
Your lifestyle or employment may mean that certain times of day will rarely be convenient to see the vet. If you are usually unavailable during office hours, or perhaps work evenings meaning an early morning appointment is best, it’s advisable to enquire when your local vet practices are open and pick one which has a clinic at a time to meet your needs. Clinic times can vary considerably between surgeries, so it’s often possible to find one which has a vet available at a time to suit your needs.
A veterinary practice usually comprises not only the vet, but also a veterinary nurse, reception staff, cleaners and other associated employment. Depending on the nature of the complaint your animal has, it may be the case that the veterinary nurse is best qualified to treat the animal, rather than the vet. Veterinary nurses are highly skilled and can often undertake routine tasks as well as give plenty of general welfare advice. Seeking a consultation with the veterinary nurse is often cheaper than having an appointment with the vet; surgeries will normally advice on the most appropriate professional to help your animal.
The type of care provided varies from one practice to another, so ensure you check what each can offer before making a decision on which surgery to visit. Virtually all vets provide emergency animal care, so if you come across a sick or injured animal, the nearest vet will almost invariably assist. Such care normally includes resuscitation, controlling bleeding, ensuring the animal isn’t in significant pain and attempting to stabilise the creature prior to determining a longer term treatment programme. If necessary vets will perform euthanasia if it is in the best interests of the animal.
For less urgent cases, the vet can normally carry out basic diagnostic procedures and perform routine surgeries. Many practices have X-ray facilities and can get a rapid analysis of bodily fluid samples to assist diagnosis. Cases which don’t fall within the practice’s usual remit, may be referred to another practice or on to a veterinary hospital which can offer a wider range of therapies and facilities. The majority of ailments and common surgeries (for example neutering, excisions or bone-setting) can usually be done at your local practice.
Vets have access to a wide range of medication which can be used to manage both acute conditions (infections, pain, intestinal discomfort) as well as more chronic illnesses including diabetes, heart problems, arthritis or kidney issues). Once prescribed the medicines are usually dispensed on the premises, although customers can get their veterinary prescriptions filled online if they prefer. This can be a more economical option, particularly if your pet has a long term condition which requires managing through medication.
As well as treating illness, vets are also an excellent source of preventative health treatments and advice. Vaccination schedules, worming treatments, flea control and health monitoring are all routinely available and can make an enormous positive difference to your pet’s health and well-being. Advice on correct diet (animal obesity is a growing problem), exercise, grooming, socialisation and pet hygiene are all readily available, giving you all the information you need to care for your animals properly. Vets open on Sunday also tend to have information on local organisations which can provide additional support which can be particularly useful if you have an unusual pet or require assistance which is beyond the remit of the surgery. They can also provide useful contacts for dealing with issues such as animal cremation, international animal travel (both pets and commercial livestock), disease control and notification, animal welfare matters and rehoming.
Fees and Payment
Unless you have an alternative arrangement in place, fees are usually payable as soon as the treatment has been provided. Whilst no vet would refuse to treat an animal in an emergency or if they are in severe pain or discomfort, the expectation is that payment will be forthcoming before further treatment is provided. Fees vary considerably from practice to practice, so it’s important to shop around to ensure you get the best value-for-money. This is particularly the case for routine procedures and vaccinations, with many surgeries offering attractive incentives to register your pet with them for these treatments. Surgeries can also offer discounts for large numbers of animals, so if you can manage to coordinate routine testing or jabs so that the vet can treat many animals in one setting and time then it’s possible to reduce costs. Remember that out-of-hours appointments and healthcare where the vet needs to travel to visit your animal will all cost more than treatment at the surgery, so look for vets open on Sunday and those with generous opening hours to give you more chance of having your animal treated for less.
If you are on a low income or are struggling to pay vet bills, there are options for financial support. The Blue Cross provides basic veterinary care to animals where owners are on a low income and there are also local schemes available for residents of a particular area. Some vets open on Sunday will offer lower rates if you are on a reduced income, but these usually need to be negotiated in advance of treatment being required. A common safeguard is to take out pet insurance which will pay out should your animal become injured or ill. As a vet bill can easily run into hundreds (or even thousands) of pounds, pet insurance is often a good way of ensuring you can afford to have your animal treated should an unexpected accident or health complaint occur.
Once you have taken these variables into consideration and devised a short list of suitable vets open on Sunday, if possible take time to visit them in person to help inform your final decision. Each practice is slightly different and what may suit one animal and owner won’t suit another. Even small differences such as waiting area size (a small area can be difficult if you’ve got a large, bouncy dog that can’t resist the urge to play), nearby parking or proximity to public transport can all shape the eventual choice.
Ensure that when you’ve found your ideal practice, you register as soon as possible and certainly before your animal needs treatment. Some vets will only treat registered patients or may not be taking on new cases as they are already over-subscribed. Getting registered promptly ensures that when your animal has a health issue you are in a prime position to obtain the best possible care for them from your chosen provider.