SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The only overnight emergency animal center in the Santa Fe area has been shut down for months. Local veterinarians are concerned about people’s pets saying their closest help is in Albuquerque.
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Brent Parker has been a veterinarian in Santa Fe for more than 30 years. Like many businesses, COVID has had an impact on animal hospitals, especially on staffing. “Veterinarians, technical staff, and receptionists alike,” said Parker. But his biggest concern is about a lack of overnight emergency vet services in the area.
“For the past approximately a year and a half, the emergency veterinarian clinic in Santa Fe is closed,” said Parker. We’re told it was the only after-hours emergency pet clinic in Santa Fe. Signs on the windows didn’t explain why they closed their doors but vets believe it was because of staffing issues.
Since the clinic has been closed, people now have to make the hour drive to Albuquerque. “And if you, of course, have a dog that’s been hit by a car or hurt something or a cat that’s really in bad shape, you know it’s not necessarily going to survive a trip to Albuquerque in a car,” said Parker. “The people of Santa Fe County, Los Alamos County, and Española have no nighttime or emergency services available and that’s almost about 200,000 people. So the poor emergency people in Albuquerque are getting bombarded by all over.”
Parker said he knows people who have had to rush their pets to the metro. He hopes a nearby after-hours emergency clinic will get up and running again, soon. “Something really needs to be done and addressed about that,” said Parker.
KRQE News 13 reached out to the company that owns the closed-down emergency vet clinic in Santa Fe but did not hear back.