VET’S DIARY: Equine division gears up for a busy year ahead

As the new year starts, the equine division of Alnorthumbria Vets takes a look at the year ahead and plans our calendar of events at the clinic, from visiting students, vets and farriers’ education and the changes we can make to improve the service to our clients, writes Lesley Barwise Munro.

Education seems high on the list for 2014.

Gail Mackinlay, a well-known member of the equine team, has just passed her Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Practice (Equine Internal Medicine).

It is a much sought-after qualification for equine vets and has taken her two-and-a-half years of studying, which on top of a full-time job is a huge achievement. Congratulations Gail!

This helps to keep us all up to date with new developments in equine veterinary medicine and hopefully continuing to improve the clinical standards we can offer.

The careers convention at Dame Allan’s School on February 6 saw us talking to many aspiring young vets and equine nurses about what is required to embark on this type of career.

More on education at Pony Club level, where we will be teaching the junior members of the Percy Hunt Branch about first aid and how to recognise various equine emergencies in their ponies, and when to call the vet. This is organised by Sue Haughie and Alison Gibson (DC), at the TA Centre in Alnwick on February 18 at 6pm.

We are pleased to be involved with the Morpeth Riding for the Disabled Open Day on Friday, February 21, at the Pegasus Centre.

The day will be made up of demonstrations, lots of different activities and stalls, and equine vet Edward Chinn will be in attendance on the Alnorthumbria stand.

As part of the launch of a new J&A Ferrie Farriery Supplies outlet from Fairmoor Equine Clinic, we will be hosting a farriers and vets training day on March 27 this year, with guest speakers Patrick Pollock, consultant soft-tissue surgeon from the Weipers Centre at Glasgow University, and Jim and Alan Ferrie FWCFs on advancing standards in farriery.

We are also very privileged to be asked by the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) to host a two-day gastroscopy training course for vets on May 22 and 23.

Speaking will be worldleaders on equine gastric ulcer syndrome, including Richard Hepburn from B & W Equine Practice in Gloucestershire.

In terms of looking at how we can improve the service we offer to our equine clients, we are running a client survey rewarded by a prize draw.

The survey is on our website – www.alnorthumbria – and for those of you who wish to receive our monthly newsletter by smart email, the survey can be received as part of this service – we value your feedback.

We’re not promising that we’ll be able to meet all your demands, but we will review all the responses and do our best.

Good luck with your horses, ponies and donkeys in 2014.

To find out more about our clinic educational events and our client survey, phone 01670 897597 or visit the website.