Vet services are now available two afternoons a week in the Elk Valley.
A Country Animal Hospital Fernie is now open Tuesday and Thursday 12-4 pm at the former Fernie Fly Fishing cabin on Highway 3, near the Stanford Resort.
Dr David Marion, who also owns A Country Animal Hospital in Eureka, Montana, is operating the satellite clinic for triage, vaccinations and treating minor injuries.
However, says practice manager Debbie Marion, for the foreseeable future, more complex procedures will still need to take place at the main animal hospital in Montana.
“Currently we are only registered in B.C. as a mobile vet unit, so we can only do certain procedures under that,” she said.
“We don’t have water and power at the clinic yet, which restricts us too.
“Also, because we are an American business we are restricted on the financing we can get on buying equipment in Canada and we aren’t allowed to bring everything over the border.
“In the future we are going to get horse runs at the side of the building which will allow us to do horse dental work and other procedures.
“Once we have a place at the building to have kennels, we would like to offer daily transport to and from Eureka for the pets.
“However even that depends on me finding a vehicle that can have anchored kennels in it, and the ability to transport an animal if it needs to be stabilized with fluids.”
Debbie said that they hope to offer the clinic three days a week by the end of the year, and ultimately they hope to offer a full-time Fernie clinic.
She added the Fernie clinic will be covered initially by Dr Marion, and he will be joined later by the practice’s new vet, Dr Laura Wilant.
Dr Wilant completed her masters and veterinary degrees in Edinburgh, Scotland, and specialized in exotic and equine medicine, food animal management and herd health, plus veterinary public health.
She completed veterinary externships in Kentucky and South Dakota, as well as Rajastan, India.