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Autumn 2020 newsletter
As we have adjusted to the 'new normal' there have been a few changes at Dacre House through which our staff have worked flat-out and certainly deserve medals! Working at limited capacity within Covid guidelines has been a challenge but we are pleased now to have un-furloughed all our staff and have been able to increase the number of staff on site as well as looking forward to the potential for increased consulting space.
After an incredible 21 years of service we bade a sad farewell to Bev in July. Bev made the decision to retire from the clinic and is now able to spend more time with her family, especially her baby granddaughter, as well as a little more gardening time. Bev has been a wonderful, friendly face and voice over the phone to many of you over the years and will be much missed by staff and clients alike. We wish her all the very best for her retirement. We are delighted to welcome vet Becky Clark back to our team. Having left Dacre House six years ago to go travelling, she has worked at various practices in Kent since. At home Becky has Edie the staffie (a resuce from Dacre House during her first period working here) and two cats. When note at work her two young daughters and much time spent renovating the house keep her busy, as well as managing a blog for a charity advocating for people with Down Syndrome. Judith Shaw joined the team permanently in July having been working as maternity cover for Liz's administration role over the past year. She now joins the reception team as well as continuing to do a few hours in the office. We welcomes Beth Taylor to our nursing team in July, who joins us from Pennard Vets in Sevenoaks. Beth particularly loves working with dogs but also has a soft spot for cats having grown up with them. When not at Dacre House she runs a dog walking and pet sitting business. Finally, some exciting news, we have been granted permission to open a small branch practice on Pembury High Street! Keep an eye on our Facebook page for up-to-date announcements.
Summer 2020 newsletter
The last few months have brought unexpected challenges for many of us, as we have adapted to measures to address the coronavirus pandemic. As we write this newsletter it is hard to predict what the summer months will look like but this seems a good opportunity to say thank you to all the Dacre House staff who handled the changes admirably - some accepting being furloughed, others reducing their hours or adjusting their working patterns so that we could continue to provide care for our patients. Also to say thank you to our pet owners, for your patience and understanding in the face of new protocols at the clinic and postponed procedures.
With the warmer weather we are once again seeing more patients with skin problems; more fleas and more ticks. Itchy skin can be a very frustrating condition and left unchecked can quickly escalate, as scratching, licking or rubbing leads to further skin irritation. We have more and more options for managing skin disease and, like many problems, treatment is best started early, so please don't hesitate to contact us if your pet is affected. Similarly, taking preventative measures against fleas and ticks is much better than waiting until they are seen. Finally, rabbit owners will be pleased to know that there will soon be a combined myxomatosis, RHD-1 and RHD-2 vaccine available, meaning rabbits can be protected with just a single injection.
Spring 2020 newsletter
Wishing you all a very happy start to the new decade! Also, thank you so much for your incredibly generous givings of chocolates, cakes, cards and letter which turned our staff kitchen into an Aladdin's cave of goodies over the Christmas season. Your support is hugely appreciated by the team with your comments of thanks on social media and cards a great morale boost.
In January we welcomed back our Head Nurse, Emma, from maternity leave. She is quickly getting us in check again with her wonderful organisational skills and eye for detail. Holly, who covered Emma's maternity leave, is remaining on with the team to help with an increasing caseload. Our dogs and cats are frequently in the limelight, so a few notes on rabbit health in this newsletter! We recommend that rabbits are vaccinated against two deadly infectious diseases - myxomatosis and rabbit viral haemorrhagic disease (referred to as RHD or VHD). There is now a new strain of RHD in the UK, RHD-2, and we sadly saw a number of cases last year. Please speak to one of our team for information on these vaccines. In addition, as the weather warms up, we strongly recommend all rabbits are checked twice a day for any signs of flystrike. Flies are very attracted to rabbits if they have soiled bottoms - here they lay their eggs which rapidly hatch out into maggots. Flystrike can appear very suddenly and is a true rabbit emergency.
Winter 2019 newsletter
In September we welcomed Scottish vet Abigail to our team who recently graduated from the University of Glasgow. Having always lived in Glasgow she was keen to move near London to explore a new area and family connections. Abi enjoys all aspects of small animal practice and has a particular passion for dogs - her family have two German pointers back at home and Abi hopes to get her own dog when she is more settled into the area. In her spare time, Abi enjoys playing hockey, tennis and going hillwalking.
Bradley has been busy around the practice – we are pleased to say his raspberry pi's ('little computer boxes' to the non-IT savvy among us) are a success, meaning no more big computer terminals, a little more space on our shelves and lower energy consumption. Bradley enjoys nothing more than to move wires around and has put some new trunking around the walls and sorted the tangle of wires under the reception desk. He also had a light bulb fitting session to brighten up the dull days (never a dull day at Dacre House but it was getting a bit dismal as the days grow shorter). Bradley finally came round to Liz's idea of painting a bit of green around the place, a lovely calming colour around our surgery and kennel areas.
Head nurse, Emma, is enjoying maternity leave but can still be spotted in the clinic from time to time keeping on top of her admin - we captured a delightful moment on camera when Finley and Joel met one another whilst mums were at work. Meanwhile we are hugely grateful to Helen who is working hard with the nursing team to keep things in order until Emma’s return to work in the new year.
Finally, huge congratulations to our long-standing receptionist Bev who became a Grandma back in September when her daughter Maria gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, Leilani.
...Bertie was a cat of character who gave us a huge amount of affection, lots of laughs, some worries and many memories. Thank you for looking after him during his long life, and for ensuring that his end was quick and dignified. You're a great bunch and we can't fault the care you provided to our Mr B. You also know about kindness to people too...
Dear Bradley and everyone at the vets, thank you very much for all your care and kindness, we are so lucky to have such wonderful people to care for our pets. Tia seems to be doing fine now, thank you for seeing her and treating her so quickly. With lots of love...
To everyone at Dacre House, thank you so much for the past year I have learnt so much. I am sorry to leave but I hope you will allow me back after my exams. I cannot tell you how grateful I am for this opportunity.
We can't thank you enough for your rapid care and actions that saved Ruby on Thursday evening.
...wanted to say thank you for your care of our hamsters, reptiles and degus (forgot - rats) over the years.