Category Archives: Stratford News

Vets throw open their doors for anniversary celebrations

A leading Warwickshire vets will be throwing open its doors and inviting friends old and new to help celebrate the fifth anniversary of one of its branches.

Avonvale Veterinary Centres’ Stratford branch is celebrating its fifth birthday in September and is holding a special event to mark the occasion.


Vet Esther Daniell and senior vet Connor Carson are inviting people behind the scenes during the open evening.

The branch, which was the first surgery in the town to win accreditation from the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2015, will be holding a celebratory open evening on Monday, September 30 from 6.30pm until 8pm.

Visitors can enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of the practice, look at the state-of-the-art equipment, and see how a surgery operates and cares for people’s pets.

There will also be an interactive quiz, games and a tombola to raise money for Avonvale’s chosen charity, Cats Protection, and younger visitors will get the chance to dress up as a vet.

Head vet Connor Carson said: “We are looking forward to welcoming people to our celebratory open evening, whether they are existing clients or new to the surgery.

“It has been a hugely successful five years for us and we can’t wait to mark our anniversary.

“The event will give people the perfect opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes of a vet practice and they will learn a lot of really interesting things during the course of the evening.

“Our interactive quiz also promises to be a lot of fun.”

Posted in General News, Stratford News | Tagged ,

Laparoscopic (key-hole) spays

Neutering a female dog can either be performed via the traditional method, where the abdomen is opened and the uterus (womb) and ovaries are removed, or using laparoscopy. This involves two small incisions made in the skin, through which the instruments and camera are inserted. The ovaries are removed leaving the uterus in place.

As with conventional spays, we recommend that this procedure is performed either when your dog is 6 months of age or 2-3 months following a season.

We offer this procedure to our Avonvale patients and also to those referred to us by their usual veterinary practice.

Advantages of laparoscopic procedures

  • Reduced pain from surgical wounds (so your dog is more comfortable)
  • Smaller surgical wounds
  • Fewer stitches
  • A faster return to normal activity
  • Reduced scar tissue formation

What to expect when your pet comes in

Your pet will be admitted by one of our nurses on the day of the procedure. It is important that they have had no food since midnight but can be allowed water over night.

Once admitted they will receive a general anaesthetic as with all operations. The fur on the stomach will be clipped and the skin cleaned ready for the operation.

Laparoscopic (key-hole) spays

Two small incisions will be made in the skin and the cameras and instruments inserted through these. Once the ovaries have been remove these little holes will be closed, normally with dissolvable stitches that are buried beneath the skin. Your pet will be discharged on the same day.

As with humans undergoing laparoscopic procedures we will ask for consent to convert to a conventional approach during the procedure if necessary. This is extremely unlikely to happen and would only be performed if unforeseen circumstances arise where it would be safer for you pet to do this.

Post operative care

Your dog will be sent home with a plastic collar to wear. This will prevent them licking at their wounds and introducing infections. This should be worn at all times unless they are under your direct supervision.

Most animals are a little quiet after an anaesthetic and can have a reduced appetite for up to 24 hours.

They should be kept on the lead for 3 days, at which time they will have a post-operative check with one of our nurses (or back at your normal vets if they were a referral). They will examine the wounds and make sure everything is healing well and after this they can resume normal exercise.

A pain killer (metacam) will be dispensed when your pet is discharged. This should be given for 2-3 days after the operation.

If you would like to find out more or have any questions please give us a call on 01789 561010

Posted in General News, Pet health care advice, Stratford News |

Heston the Hedgehog

Just as the winter weather was setting in a member of the public bought a small hedgehog into our Stratford upon Avon surgery. He had been found in the middle of a car park during daylight hours. At just 97g he would not have survived the winter.Denni, one of our nurses, took him in. Over winter she kept him warm and well fed. His favourite food was meal worms but as these have little nutritional value they were rationed to encourage him to eat his healthier hedgehog mix. Over the winter he has grown big and strong, now weighing in at a healthy 700g.

As spring arrived, Heston was ready to be released. For safety reasons Heston was unable to be released back to where he was found. Thanks to Kyra at Hedgehog Friendly Town, Heston was released in a safe and hedgehog friendly environment.

Hedgehog Friendly Town work hard fostering hedgehogs and finding safe release sites. It is important to find out if other hedgehogs live in the area before releasing more on that site. If there are no resident hedgehogs already, there is probably a good reason for this and so an alternative site is found.

Unfortunately the hedgehog population is currently under threat. Here are a few ways you can help hedgehogs in your area.

  1. Leave areas of wilderness in your garden where hedgehogs can snuffle for insects. Place a small hedgehog house to provide a safe place for them to hibernate during winter. A small hole in your fence will allow visiting hedgehogs to pass through. In the past people used to mark visiting hedgehogs with a little paint so they know if they return but the paint may be harmful and also makes it easier for predators to spot them.
  2. Leave out a water bowl for them to drink from. Dusk is a good time to scatter food for them to eat. Avoid bread and milk as hedgehogs are lactose intolerant and these foods will make them ill. They like eating dog and cat food – wet or dry. They also like a few meal worms. Autumn and winter is a good time to leave out food for struggling hedgehogs.
  3. Kyra and Heston on the release day

    Hedgehogs are nocturnal. If you see a hedgehog during the day then it may need help. Using gardening gloves or a thick towel, carefully pick him up and take him to a wildlife rescue centre. Hedgehogs are also good at getting stuck in litter so pick up litter and if you do see a hedgehog in trouble, please transport him to a veterinary centre or wildlife rescue centre.

  4. If you are planning on having a bonfire, please always check for hedgehogs before lighting it. Unfortunately hedgehogs sometimes move into the heap before you light it and are then severely injured by the flames or worse.We would like to wish Heston and his fellow hedgehogs all the best for the future. It is also important to check for hedgehogs before using strimmers on long grass or vegetation.


Posted in General News, Stratford News | Tagged , , ,

Petplan Vet Awards

Avonvale's nomination for the Practice of the Year award at the Veterinary Awards 2017We are very pleased to announce that we have received lots of nominations for the Petplan awards this year. Our Kenilworth, Stratford, Southam and Wellesbourne surgeries have all been nominated for “Practice of the Year”. Vets Kieran, Sophie, Penny B, Deborah and Becky have each been nominated for “Vet of the Year”. Maddi, Michelle and Anna H have been nominated for “Vet Nurse of the Year.” Jodie and Nicole were both nominated for the “Support Staff of the Year” and Liz K has been nominated for “Receptionist of the Year.”

We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who nominated us.

Posted in General News, Kenilworth News, Southam News, Stratford News, Wellesbourne News | Tagged , , ,

Shelby’s happy reunion

imageShelby the cat was brought into our Stratford surgery after she was found apparently lost in Stratford.

Head nurse Becky scanned Shelby to check if she had a microchip. Luckily she did, so were able to contact her worried owner straight away. He was very relieved to hear she was ok and came straight away to collect her.

Shelby had been missing from her home in Staffordshire for 2 weeks and was very happy to be reunited with hr owner.

Microchipping involves inserting a tiny chip under the animal’s skin. This gives the pet their own unique code which can be scanned and matched to the owner’s contact details, which are kept on a national database. This means that, as long as your details are kept up to date, your pet can be quickly and easily reunited with you should they get lost.

Microchipping is a legal requirement in all dogs, but is definitely advisable for all cats as well.

Posted in General News, Stratford News |

Congratulations Katie!



Congratulations to Stratford vet Katie and her husband Rich on the birth of their very gorgeous baby girl Amy Rose. Amy was born last week and weighed 6lb 4oz. Mum and baby are doing really well and we wish the whole family all the best at this exciting time!

Posted in General News, Stratford News | Tagged , ,

New faces at Avonvale!





There have been some exciting changes across Avonvale recently.

This month we have bid a very fond farewell to Diane, our Practice Manager who has worked for Avonvale for over 12 years. We wish her all the best in her new adventures in sunny Abu Dhabi!

We are very pleased to welcome new Practice Manager Kate Webb and administration assistant Ann to the Avonvale team.



Our Stratford branch going from strength to strength means we have recruited three new vets! Welcome to Lara, Gemma and Daisy. Daisy will be joining our Stratford team while Katie is on maternity leave, Gemma will be mostly at Warwick and Lara will be working across all of our surgeries.



We also welcome our new nurse Denni, who many clients at our Stratford surgery may have met already.



All our new team members are looking forward to meeting our clients and their pets over the next few weeks.

Posted in General News, Stratford News, Warwick News | Tagged , ,

Pride of Stratford

We are very proud of our Stratford nurses as they have been selected as finalists in the Team of the Year category at the Pride of Stratford Awards!

The Pride of Stratford Awards celebrate the best achievements in business and the community. The Team of the Year award celebrates teams which have made a significant contribution to the business, and the Stratford nurses have been nominated alongside The Attic Theatre and Sunflowers Pre-School.

We will find out the winner at the glitzy award ceremony on Friday 5th February at the Holiday Inn. Good luck to all those nominated!





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Stratford Surgery Opens Today

Stratford Surgery Opens

Our new surgery opened today in Stratford Upon Avon. Vet Katie Wain and VNs Becky, Natasha and Laura have been welcoming new clients and their pets to the new surgery next door to Waitrose at the Rosebird Centre and enjoying showing off the new premises.

Guest of honour at our lunchtime official opening event was Pegasus Lewis.  You may remember Peg as she was the loyal companion of local paratrooper Conrad Lewis who adopted her as a stray during his tour of duty in Afghanistan. Following his death whilst on active service his parents Sandi and Tony managed to trace Peg with the help of animal welfare charity Nowzad and brought her home to live with them.

Peg exemplifies the special bond between people and pets and we were delighted to have her as our official ‘First Paw Through The Door’ in Stratford. There were several other paws through the door today too and they all enjoyed a good sniff around.

Avonvale has pledged £5 to Nowzad and Hounds for Heroes for every new client that registers with our new Stratford surgery.


Posted in General News, Stratford News |