Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) in Ontario

Animal Owner
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What is a Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship?

A strong Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) is key to providing the best possible care for your animals.


  • Means you have a formal relationship and regularly work with a veterinarian; this relationship is centered around your animal(s).
  • Means you have discussed the types of services your veterinarian is willing to provide to you and you are aware of how to access veterinary care in the event of an emergency.
  • Proves that your veterinarian knows you, your animals, and your production practices. This helps your veterinarian to diagnose animal health problems and prescribe the most appropriate treatment when needed, such as antimicrobials.

In short, a VCPR means that you and your veterinarian work together, and that you’ve agreed how you’ll work together, and on what aspects of your operation (including emergency situations).

What Else Should You Know?

Your veterinarian must establish a VCPR with you before providing any treatment or veterinary services, such as providing animal health recommendations, prescribing, dispensing, or administering drugs (unless it’s an emergency).

You need a VCPR to get prescriptions from your veterinarian: As of December 1st, 2018, a veterinary prescription is required to obtain any drug product containing a medically important antimicrobial, so you must have a VCPR to access these products.

Want to learn more on these changes?

What Should You Do Right Now?

If you don’t already have one, establish a working relationship (VCPR) with a veterinarian in your area to prepare for December 1st, 2018.