Our animal clinic's veterinary service provider will provide emergency treatment for registered animals outside normal hours. To become registered animals must have visited the Pool Way clinic during normal working hours (9-10.30 am Tue.,Wed.,Thur., Sat.), and to maintain their registration they must visit the clinic at least once every two years.
This is done to protect the animals' welfare and we must not abuse their helpfulness by using the emergency service for things that could wait until a normal clinic session, so the branch has a rota of volunteers who act as the first point of call for incoming requests for emergency treatment. During the day we can phone in to the hospital direct, but at night the procedure is for us to phone the duty nurse, who then calls in to the veterinary interns whose turn it is to be on duty on the ward. Unfortunately this does mean that late night/early morning calls cause the nurse to be woken up (the interns work shifts so are at least already awake).
Tonight was not one of the better ones; a caller whose dog was in labour first phoned in for advice, then about half an hour later to let us know that she had managed to organise a lift in to the hospital, and finally a third time to ask for the interns to be called again by phone as they didn't seem to be responding to the entrance door buzzer. The poor nurse must have been cursing us.