Some of you may already know our nurse, Caroline Stevens from our Cat Clinic at Stoke Road. She has been instrumental in us gaining International Society of Feline Medicineâ€™s Cat Friendly Clinic Silver award, ensuring a calm environment for your cats to be treated.
For the last two years, alongside her hard work in the practice, Caroline has been studying for the RCVS Diploma in Advanced Veterinary Nursing, which we are pleased to inform you she has recently passed.
The Diploma is an advanced post-registration qualification which involved a combination of modules that she studied both on study weekends at Myerscough College and distance learning. Caroline selected clinical modules that reflected her interests, which included anaesthesia, medical nursing and surgical nursing.
Caroline will of course be able to apply her learning to her role as Clinical Coach for our nursing students.
We, as a practice, actively encourage continuous professional development and encourage personal growth across the whole practice team.
Congratulations, Caroline Stevens BSc(Hons) RVN DipAVN Dip HE CVN SQP
Over the course of the year, we have sought to expand our team of veterinary surgeons. No, we donâ€™t mean feeding them more chocolate, but increasing the quantity, and experience.
Joe Barrington has been with us in a part-time capacity for a year now, but became full time at the beginning of summer. Throughout university and since graduating he has had a strong interest in diagnostic imaging and dog behaviour. He is currently studying ultrasonography. Joe is shown below performing surgery on a horse in a previous practice.
Tiago Bispo started earlier in the year, initially to cover Anjaâ€™s maternity leave. Tiagoâ€™s area of interest is cardiology. He consultsÂ mostly at Stoke Road, but sadly will be leaving us to start an internship at a referral centre later this year.Â It is a fantastic opportunity for him and we wish him well.
Carl Jarrett qualified in 1997 at Pretoria University in South Africa. After qualifying, he returned to the UK to work in small animal practice. Carl has a strong interest in both soft tissue and orthopaedic surgery and worked in Australia for 7 years, learning and becoming proficient at advanced orthopaedic procedures. Here is Carl with some of his own pets on his smallholding.
Having high calibre staff is important to us, enabling us to provide the very best care possible for you and your pets. They regularly partake in continuing professional development as required by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and have regular team meetings within the practice to keep abreast of changes in practice policy.
However, as important as it is that our vets and nurses are highly qualified, equally, if not more important, is that they are caring and compassionate. We really feel that they look after their patients as if they are their own.
As you know we currently recommend vaccination for rabbits against Myxomatosis and VHD-1 (viral haemorrhagic disease). There has been a lot of concern in the rabbit press about a new strain of VHD (VHD-2) which the current vaccination does not protect against and causes sudden death in rabbits. There is a vaccine available for commercial rabbits on the continent and we are able to import a small supply for our pets but it does not have a UK licence. It can be given from 6 weeks of age but should not be given at the same time as the routine vaccines. It needs to be repeated every 6 months to maintain protection. As the vaccine comes in a multidose vial which has to be discarded 2 hours after opening we are hoping to group appointments together for those rabbit clients who wish their pets to have this vaccine so as to minimise waste and vaccinate as many rabbits as possible for a reasonable price. The cost of the vaccine is Â£25 (including VAT) If you are interested in having this vaccine please contact us on 01908 397777 so we can add you to our list. Once we receive our stock we will contact you to book into one of our sessions and arrange payment. It is very important only to book a slot when you are definitely available as otherwise your dose will have to be discarded. Please remember that VHD-2 is not yet common in the UK, and so the risk to your rabbit remains minimal. Myxomatosis still remains the biggest risk to pet rabbits in the UK.Â Please ensure your rabbits have been vaccinated against Myxomatosis disease in the past 12 months. Further, and regularly updated information can be found on the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund website blog here: http://rabbitwelfare.blogspot.co.uk/
As a precautionary measure, noticesÂ are beingÂ posted at the lake warning that contact with the algal scum should be avoided.
What are blue-green algae? Blue-green algae naturally occur in inland waters and blooms can form when their numbers become excessive. It is these â€œbloomsâ€ that give the water a blue-green appearance or a â€œpea soupâ€ like colour. The behaviour of these algae is erratic and the level of its toxicity can fluctuate; it can appear one day, be dispersed by the wind and, mix and re-accumulate at any time.
How can blue-green algae affect you and your animals? Blue-green algal blooms can produce toxins hazardous to both people and animals. Not all blue-green blooms produce toxins, but it is not possible to tell which are dangerous without testing, and therefore all blooms should be considered potentially toxic. Dogs that enjoy swimming and playing in lakes and ponds may be exposed to blue-green algae.
Symptoms of poisoning include:
- Blood in stool or black, tarry stool
- Pale mucous membranes
- Excessive secretions (e.g., salivation, lacrimation, etc.)
- Neurologic signs (including muscle tremors, muscle rigidity, paralysis, etc.)
- Blue discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes
- Difficulty breathing