A survey of RVNs carried out by Animalcare has highlighted an opportunity for practices to take a more proactive approach to educating owners about maintaining their pet’s wellbeing and welfare in older age. According to the survey, fewer than three in ten practices currently run senior pet clinics while there was a clear view among all respondents that additional educational resources would be helpful in supporting their efforts to engage with owners of senior pets.

 

The survey was undertaken to gain an insight into how practices are currently helping clients to ensure that their pets continue to enjoy life during their later years. Key obstacles to running senior pet clinics cited were inadequate staffing or a lack of time, particularly among RVNs. Seven in ten also felt that clients did not understand the benefits of regular attendance at clinics.

 

Responses from those practices that did run clinics, however, indicated that they were part of their practice’s ethos to care for pets throughout their life journey. The RVNs leading them felt well-supported by their colleagues, while suggesting that additional online resources, CPD and client care leaflets would be helpful for them in educating clients.

 

Commenting on the findings, Kirsty Cavill BSc (Hons) RVN MIATT said: “We know that during the 18 months of the pandemic, practice teams have experienced unprecedented demand for their services and have therefore, concentrated their resources on the daily workload. When considered alongside, the ‘pandemic puppy’ phenomenon, this means that veterinary professionals have spent a large proportion of their time dealing with pets in the early stages of their lives.

 

“As veterinary professionals we want to provide the highest standard of care to patients throughout their lives and, as the pressures of the pandemic start to ease, we have a real opportunity to highlight the need for a proactive approach to veterinary care in a pet’s later years, in the same way that we do for puppies and kittens. It’s time for a new mindset and a new focus on senior pets, which will benefit our patients and our clients.”

 

James Beaumont, Marketing Manager at Animalcare, added: “We hope to help practices to put the health and wellbeing of senior pets back on the agenda.  To support them, we have created a suite of ‘Making Senior Easier’ resources to help them educate owners to ensure that their pets live longer and healthier lives. The resources include:

 

  • Health check materials, including a ‘senior triage’ form to be completed by owners and a ‘senior pet assessment form,’ which can act as a checklist for practice staff
  • Condition handouts for owners, detailing common age-related problems
  • Generic short articles on age-related issues for use in e-newsletters and on websites.

 

The resources are available for free download at: www.animalcare.co.uk/seniorpet

 

“We hope that practices will find them useful and that they will help them, not only to provide a higher standard of care to pets as they get older, but also enable them to build stronger client relationships by offering a proactive approach to the care of senior pets.”

 

Practices are asked to contact their Animalcare Territory Manager or contact Animalcare’s head office on 01904 487687 for further information.

A team from Animalcare UK/Identicare, nicknamed ‘Team Pain,’ has raised almost £900 for StreetVet by taking part in the Yorkshire Marathon Relay event. The race, on Sunday 17 October, involved teams of six, tackling a range of distances on a course around the city.

Commenting, Luke Bishop, Identicare Contact Centre Advisor, said:

“What a great experience! The atmosphere on the day was brilliant. Throughout the whole route spectators lined the streets to cheer us on, which motivated us to keep going. We really bonded as a team and it was great that the whole team could be there to see our final team member, Mike Jamieson, storm across the finishing line.

“Sadly, one of our team members was struck down with tonsillitis on the day but our Senior Veterinary Manager, Felicity Caddick, a marathon runner and triathlete, nobly agreed to cover two legs to get us through. We were delighted to finish in a time of 4 hrs and 25 minutes and to have raised £900 for StreetVet. The charity is close to our hearts and is Charity of the Year for both Animalcare and Identicare.”

 

The money raised from this event, coupled with the donations from Felicity’s Caddick’s Outlaw challenge in August means that Animalcare has raised more than £1,400 for Street Vet this year.

Donations can still be made here: https://www.justgiving.com/team/Animalcare

Dr Colin Capner has joined Animalcare as a Technical Vet. In this role, he will support the company’s growth strategy and provide high quality technical advice and support to vet practices across the UK.

Dr Capner graduated from the RVC in 1992 and has worked as a clinical veterinary surgeon in a variety of first opinion practices and referral centres. He trained as a veterinary anaesthetist at Bristol and Cambridge Universities before moving into the pharmaceutical industry, gaining experience in drug development and in technical support, and pre- and post-marketing, at a number of companies.

 

Commenting on his new role he said: “Animalcare is introducing a number of new and innovative medicines, such as Daxocox©– its weekly NSAID to reduce breakthrough pain in dogs with osteoarthritis – to the veterinary sector.  This makes it an exciting environment in which to provide technical support.

 

“I’m looking forward to exploring how my experience can be most useful in supporting Animalcare’s expansion and, more importantly, ensuring that the company’s customers receive the guidance and advice they need to optimise the effectiveness of Animalcare’s product range in treating their patients.”

 

Senior Veterinary Manager Felicity Caddick said:

“Colin Capner’s experience will be hugely useful to us as we continue to build our product portfolio in key therapy areas in growing market segments. During the next few months, we will be continuing to launch new products and develop a differentiated and innovative pipeline of products for the future.

 

“Delivering excellent technical support to our customers is an essential part of the service we offer as we grow.  The addition of Colin to our Technical team gives us a strength and depth of experience that we know our customers will value highly.”