01484 242911  

Unique Veterinary & Nursing Oncology Service Launches in West Yorkshire

28th June Press Release

Donaldson's Veterinary Group is delighted to announce the addition of a new oncology veterinary referral service at its Somerset Road Veterinary Hospital in Huddersfield. Cancer Care for Pets is proudly working in association with Donaldson's to offer an advanced veterinary and nursing service, delivering clinical and palliative care to support pets with cancer to live as full a life as they possibly can. Cancer Care for Pets is independently owned by Veterinary Surgeon Neil Palmer (BVSc, MSc (Clin Onc), MRCVS) and Advanced Oncology Nurse Kirsty Chippendale (Dip AVN, RVN), who together bring more than 45 years in the veterinary profession to the new referral service. Launched in June 2021, Cancer Care for Pets is already up and running and accepting referrals via or 01484 242911.

As one of the leading Independent Veterinary Practices in the North, Donaldson's Vets are delighted to welcome the Cancer Care for Pets team to the Somerset Road Hospital in Huddersfield where they will support the work of the busy first opinion team and take referral cases from far and wide. Vet and Director Martin Paterson said: "As a busy first opinion group practice, working across six sites, we see a number of challenging cancer patients and it will be fantastic to have the skills, knowledge and care of the Cancer Care for Pets team on-site at our fantastic Veterinary Hospital in Huddersfield"

Neil and Kirsty have worked in practice together in the Yorkshire area for seven years, focusing almost entirely on patient-centred cancer care. They recognise the unique bond between pet and owner, and work with owners and families to create individual care and treatment plans, involving diagnostic investigations, specialised imaging, surgery, chemotherapy and palliative care.

Neil said: "When patients are referred to us with a diagnosis of cancer, owners are understandably anxious and upset and want to discuss some options and choices on the best treatment, and to speak to someone who knows more about the disease.

"As far as we know, we are one of very few services to offer this combination of veterinary and nurse-led consultations, where comprehensive cancer treatment and care plans are developed together with owners. We have worked hard to instil our team approach where, following surgery and treatment, the Cancer Care team, the owner and the referring practice are all involved in the pet's ongoing care and wellbeing.

Kirsty said: "Neil and I do many of our consults together. Neil will give his clinical overview and I will help owners to process and understand the treatment and the next steps for their pet. "It was incredibly important to us to create a friendly, welcoming environment in our new dedicated consultation area at the Hospital. We need people to trust us and be honest about how fit and well their pet really is, in the knowledge we are not automatically going to tell them there is nothing we can offer them. Treating cancer is about life, not managing a death, and making sure that the pet's life – even if it is limited – is as good as it can be."

The third member of the Cancer Care for Pets team is experienced and dedicated oncology nurse Jenna Carrick RVN, whose strong ethos of animal wellbeing is always at the forefront.

Neil added: "The Cancer Care for Pets team will hugely benefit from being located within Donaldson's Vets. Donaldson's is a well-renowned and long-established independent veterinary practice that has been very keen to support other independent ventures like ours.

"We are both experienced oncology professionals, but new to running a business, so their advice has been invaluable in establishing Cancer Care for Pets and getting us to where we are today.

"The Cancer Care for Pets team will be working alongside the wider Donaldson's veterinary and nursing teams and we are keen to learn from each other. The facilities at the hospital are second to none, particularly our new purpose-built consultation area, the Practice's new CT scanner and the high spec operating facilities. Donaldson's also has a well-respected rehabilitation and pain clinician with whom we can work closely to help our older patients to keep mobile, flexible and maintain activity levels."

The team at Donaldson's Vets have been tapping into the wealth of knowledge at Cancer Care for Pets to help support their first opinion work and have been impressed by the holistic approach to care shown by Cancer Care for Pets. Martin Paterson said: "Helping owners to understand their pets' condition and guide them to make fully informed decisions on their pet's care is at the core of what we strive to achieve in our first opinion practice. Having the support of Neil and his team, will elevate the level of knowledge and understanding to new heights for our pet owners and ensure that their ever-increasing expectations can be fully met.