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Court issues order regarding unauthorized practice

June 17, 2016

Following an investigation, the College of Veterinarians of Ontario obtained an Order from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on May 3, 2016. The Order was to prevent a non-veterinarian from engaging in the practice of veterinary medicine, including performing neuter surgeries, administering vaccines and administering anesthetics on or to animals. The Order was obtained against Joseph Martin.

The judgment clarifies that Mr. Martin is not prohibited from treating his own animals or animals owned by his employer. The Judgment also awarded the College $1,600. The Judgment states:

THIS COURT ORDERS THAT Joseph Martin comply with section 11 of the Veterinarians Act and, in particular, that he refrain from:

  1. engaging in the practice of veterinary medicine, including but not limited to performing neuter surgeries, administering vaccines and administering anesthetics on or to animals, and

  2. holding himself out as engaging in the practice of veterinary medicine.

THIS COURT FURTHER ORDERS THAT, for greater certainty, Joseph Martin is not prohibited from treating an animal if Mr. Martin is the owner of the animal, is a member of the household of the owner of the animal or is employed for general agricultural or domestic work by the owner of the animal, in accordance with subsection 11(2) of the Veterinarians Act.

THIS COURT FURTHER ORDERS THAT Joseph Martin pay to the College of Veterinarians of Ontario the costs of this application fixed in the amount of $1,600, forthwith.

"A licence issued by the College assures the public the individual has the education and professionalism to practise competently and safely. That is why only veterinarians licensed by the College are permitted to practise veterinary medicine in Ontario,“ said College Registrar and Chief Executive Officer Jan Robinson. "It poses a serious and significant risk to animals when a surgery is performed by a non-veterinarian."

The College acts in the public interest and has been granted the authority, by statute, to obtain Orders preventing non-veterinarians from practising veterinary medicine. In the event that a member of the public is of the view that a non-veterinarian is practising veterinary medicine, they are invited to contact the College at inquiries@cvo.org.

The College of Veterinarians of Ontario exists to protect and serve the public interest through the regulation of the practice of veterinary medicine. Accordingly, veterinarians are licensed, facilities are accredited, standards and policies are developed and maintained, and an investigations and resolutions process is available. The College licenses approximately 4,500 veterinarians and accredits over 2,300 facilities in Ontario.