Readers' letters - February 13

A correspondent warns of a shock he received when his dog fell ill
A correspondent warns of a shock he received when his dog fell ill

Pet owners, beware high costs of home visit vet

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Among your readers, there are bound to be many pet owners and there will be occasions when sickness of whatever sort strikes.
Normally, you would refer to your veterinary surgeon,
unless, that is, your pet is stricken during the night when vets are closed.
Which brings me to my own experience recently, when I woke at 4am and was concerned my elderly dog was ill.
Automatically, I rang my regular vet, despite knowing he wouldn’t be there at that hour but a message gave me a phone number for an emergency veterinary service.
I rang and was asked to take my dog there. I explained (a) I had no car, (b) I am an elderly pensioner and (c) my dog seemed too sick to move and could the vet visit me?
Somewhat reluctantly, I felt, he agreed, but it was an hour before he arrived. He insisted I carry the dog downstairs to lay him on the floor. He then did a perfunctory examination and took his temperature.
Finally he said he didn’t feel there was anything serious but gave me two options – for him to take the dog back to the vet or for me to ring my own vet at 8.45am when he opened for further examination.
I decided on the latter course and he left, after only about five minutes on the premises.
I subsequently saw my own vet and he carried out blood tests and x-rays etc and has prescribed treatment, all for a reasonable fee.
The reason for my detailed account of the home visiting vet is to draw attention, for the benefit of other poor, concerned pensioners in similar circumstances, who will then have the shock of a bill for £350.
Neil Kendall
Address supplied

Austerity? You ain’t seen nothing yet

So, after months of Brexit negotiations, we now know what Europe is offering. A “transition period”, finishing in 2020 when we officially leave.
During this period, we pay all our dues and demands and comply to all European laws, including any made during the transition period.
We also comply with free movement of people and we comply with all trade rules, which is exactly the same as when negotiations started. But there’s one crucial difference – we don’t get a say in any of the aforementioned in the European Parliament. Let’s all give the negotiators a clap.
So what happens in the run-up to 2020?
Well, if you listen to the Brexiters, we will have negotiated trade deals with the rest of the world to replace the 60 per cent loss of trade from leaving Europe.
Going on the record of the negotiators so far, I don’t think so.
No, what will happen in reality is many companies will relocate in Europe, taking jobs and income with them (this has already started).
Britain’s credit rating will hit rock bottom and we all know the consequences of a bad credit score when you want a loan.
Then there’s the question of what happens after 2020.
Well, if we want to trade with Europe (stay in the single market), we will get the same deal as Norway who trade with Europe but are not in the EU.
They pay £400m a year for limited access to the market and must comply with all the EU rules, including free movement of labour, without a say in the EU decision making.
Norway’s population is about five million and they pay £400m. Britain’s population is about 65 million, so it follows we will be doing a lot more trade with the EU, so we would pay in a bit more. I’ll
rephrase that, a lot more.
I was brought up in the early 1950s when this country was virtually bankrupt after the war and times were seriously rough. I’ve watched as Britain has prospered (slowly but surely with a few hiccups on the way) since we joined Europe in the 1970s. So I can say to those affected by today’s austerity measures, if we come out of Europe, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
As for Theresa May, who is well aware of the impending situation, she should show some leadership and nail her colours to the mast and call another election, this time on the basis of abandoning Brexit altogether.
The people who were hoodwinked into siding with Buffoon Boris and his cronies and voted for Brexit are a lot more clued up now.
Pete Bellamy
via email

Flushed with success

There are many awards for the acting and entertainments industry, including the upcoming BAFTA awards.
In my opinion, there should be a special award this year for the young woman who presents the VI Poo commercial. How she delivers her lines with such a straight face, without cracking up into uncontrollable laughter, is beyond me. She is surely worthy of an Oscar.
Denis Lee
Address supplied