Mowi vet ready for emergency animal care in southern Newfoundland
September 29, 2022
Should the roads to remote coastal towns in Newfoundland be closed during a state of emergency, Mowi veterinarian Dr. Amanda Borchardt will be ready to provide small animal emergency care.
During the recent forest fires that closed down road access and delivery of goods to many towns along Newfoundland’s south coast, a Facebook post from a local resident appeared asking if anyone had prescription food for a cat with kidney issues.
Local fish veterinarian Dr. Amanda Borchardt answered the call for help.
“The Facebook exchange got me thinking about all the other animals in the south coast area that needed diets, or medicines, or that might have an emergency but couldn’t access their normal veterinarian because of the road closure, so I started making calls to get an emergency animal clinic set up,” says Dr. Borchardt (DVM).
“During the road closure, there was a lot of work being invested in setting up emergency supply lines for people, like groceries, gas and human medical emergencies. I wanted to make sure that someone was looking out for any medical emergencies for animals in the area, and being the only veterinarian on the south coast, it made sense that I be the person who set that up.”
As chief veterinarian for Mowi – a salmon aquaculture company headquartered in Harbour Breton – Dr. Borchardt is licensed and trained to care for all animal species.
Other stakeholders were quick to come on board to help prepare for animal emergencies during a state of crisis, with the NL College of Veterinarians granting Dr. Borchardt emergency clinic status for the operation of a small animal clinic. The Town of St. Albans has offered an office at their municipal building for a make-shift location when needed, and the Avalon Veterinary Hospital in St. John’s has partnered with Dr. Borchardt to source emergency medicines and supplies.
“Thankfully the roads were opened shortly after we were set up, but we’re all ready to offer this emergency service in the future if required.”
“Emergency services” describes life-threatening cases that couldn’t otherwise wait more than a couple of days to treat, and would include being hit by car, lacerations, or animals that have stopped urinating or defecating. Examples that are not life threatening would be: regular vaccinations/health checks, skin issues or rashes, flea/tick/parasite control, etc.
And what about the cat owner that took to Facebook for prescription food?
“I happened to have an extra bag of the right food, so I connected with her to get her the food she needed,” adds Dr. Borchardt.