An Arnprior veterinary clinic is unable to care for pets for the next month after losing its veterinarian.

On July 20, Gillies Grove Animal Hospital posted on social media that they could no longer provide medical examinations beginning Aug. 1. The statement reads in full:

"Due to staff shortages and decreased veterinarian availability, we will no longer be booking any examinations starting August 1. We are working on finding a solution and will communicate any further availability once known. We will continue to be open for all food and prescription orders, including any refills for tick and flea preventatives. For medication refills, please give our team 48-72 hours notice. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your ongoing support."

McNab/Braeside resident Kieran Green has three pets - a dog and two cats - registered at Gillies Grove Animal Hospital, and has been attending the clinic for 10 years.

Green says he learned of the news when he visited his vet in July.

"In the course of the conversation she says, 'Oh, by the way, at the end of next week I'm leaving," recalls Green.

"And this was a shock; nobody had told us. We had received no information that we were basically losing the vet."

With only one other veterinarian practice in Arnprior, Green is worried about potentially securing a spot at a new clinic for his pets and the distance he may have to travel to do it.

"If something goes wrong, we don't know who we're going to have to turn to."

In a statement to CTV News, VetStrategy, the company that owns Gillies Grove Animal Hospital, said a part-time veterinarian would be available to help support the location starting in September.

The impact of just one veterinarian leaving the community highlights the shortage of vets across the province.

"The challenges that we're seeing and hearing about in human medicine are certainly mirrored in veterinary medicine," said Dr. Albert Wimmer, past president of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association.

"We've got increased workload, more patients than ever," Wimmer says. "The last two and a half years have not been kind to veterinary medicine as a whole."

The impact of having a veterinarian leave a community could result in upwards of 2,000 pets left without care, according to Wimmer.

His advice is not to wait until a situation becomes bad before seeking out a new vet.

"Just start calling around, talk to friends, see if you can develop a relationship with another clinic."

Green is unsure whether he should look for a new clinic for his pets or take the risk of waiting and having other spots fill up.

"Should we be going and looking for a new vet right now or should we be hanging on? We just don't know."