Cestria Veterinary Centre Ltd was originally part of a group practice based in Durham, forming when that group split. It has been based in Turnpark since 1996. We moved into a purpose converted building on the other side of Turnpark in 2013, with a new entrance on Station Road. A disabled access is available from Turnpark, which avoids any steps - a small consulting area has been created downstairs to cater for clients wishing to avoid stairs or who need close car parking to the door. Please let us know that you wish to come to the downstairs door, and we will be listening for the bell. Extending into next door in 2016, we can now offer 'quiet' waiting and a quiet ward for cats and small pets.
Miss Maxwell took over the practice in 2001, and has retained a friendly, personal atmosphere while investing extensivly in modernisation and up-grading. The practice policy is to treat your animal as if it were our own, and this translates into an approach based on the drugs, tests and surgical interventions that we would treat our own pets with under the same circumstances. We are not trying to simply sell you medicines or surgeries. Only one of our staff does not keep a pet, and most have several, so we understand the worry of illness.
We are a genuinely mixed practice, covering farm, horse and domestic pets. Our 'out of hours' services are now covered by Wear Referrals (domestic pets) and Blythman and Partners (farm and equine). This change has been forced on us due to recruitment difficulties and is deeply regretted. We handle most cases 'in house' but have good relationships with both small animal and equine specialist services within the area if referral for intensive investigations or advanced treatment is necessary.
We know as well as anyone that you consider your pet to be a member of your family. That is why the whole team here at the practice work hard to provide them with the very best veterinary care services.
Should the worst happen, we use the cremation service provided by Forget-Me-Not Pet Crematorium. All deseased animals left with us are transferred to them. Private cremation with the return of ashes in a number of different caskets and memorial containers is available, price quotations available on request from the practice. We trust their service, and all animals are individually handled with respect. Cremation for horses can be arranged by the Pet Crematorium, Langley Park, who should be contacted directly for quotations. A new memorial page is available to upload any photos or memories of your beloved friends (look for Forget-me-Not in the drop down menu under services).
Puppies and kittens brought for vaccinations will be given a health check, free flea control treatments and four weeks free insurance. Should your pup or kitten need a check or treatment before their vaccination, you will be charged for this - but the consultation cost is deducted from the vaccines later. Enroll them onto our Practice Plan, routine neutering will be discounted. Rabbits are also offered four weeks insurance with their first vaccination irrespective of their age.
We are happy to give advice on choosing a breed, and on the best places to purchase a puppy or kitten. We NEVER advise that you purchase from dealers (you can recognise a dealer as they will have lots of different breeds available and place regular adverts either in local press or on line), pet shops or from on-line adverts which do not allow you to visit a puppy or kitten at its breeders. NEVER buy a puppy or kitten from the back of a car in the motorway service stations, or one that will be delivered to your door. Many of these puppies will be from puppy farms, and may be unhealthy and poorly socialised. Take any apparently reasonable excuse not to show you the mother with a huge pinch of salt, dealers are highly plausible. Some puppies are now entering the country from eastern Europe illegally, with falcified passports! NEVER buy a puppy or kitten because you feel sorry for it. Smile, explain that it's not what you were looking for, walk away and report to the RSPCA. Purchasing 'poor little' puppies or kittens may give you great heartache and expense, and simply encourages the seller to continue producing them. Always bear in mind that a good breeder will ask you to prove that you are good enough to have one of their puppies or kittens, and will be asking about your home, garden and work committments. For most pedigree breeds, some health testing of the parents is recommended - you can find out what is advised on the health website for that particular breed. These tests can be practical, such as xraying breeding stock for hip or elbow dysplasia, or be blood tests for DNA profiling for inherited conditions, and are part of the reason that good pedigree puppies seem exensive (Gills last litter of Border Collies were each tested for two inherited conditions at a cost of £300 each for five puppies and came from hip scored, eye tested and DNA tested parents). 'Good value' pedigree puppies or kittens are unlikely to have any parental health testing records. 'Designer'crossbreeds such as cockerpoos, jackahauhas etc can still have inherited genetic problems, but the breeding stock used is usually those individuals that wouldn't be chosen to produce pedigree puppies, and are unlikely have been health tested. The whole point of 'breeds' is to as reliably as possible predict the physical and mental characteristics of the puppies, and these highly priced 'designer' puppies are, at the end of the day, unpredictable crossbreeds!
So, if you are seeking treatment or advice for your pet, do please contact us.
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The practice has a wide range of modern equipment such as ultrasound scanning, an in-house laboratory for blood counts and chemistry, endoscopy and digital radiography. The latter produces clear images within 40-50 seconds which can be rotated, flipped, magnified and digitally manipulated to give the clearest images. The speed of image production considerably reduces the time that the subject needs to be under anaesthesia or sedation - a far cry from the days of manual film development when a nurse would retreat into a dark room with the plates and spend about 12 minutes sloshing films into tanks of smelly chemicals in the dark before emerging with a sopping wet film on a hanger! Even our automatic film developer took about five minutes to produce a film, but at least that was dry! Meanwhile, the animal was under anaesthesia waiting to see if the image was of diagnositic quality. The new system is not only fast, but much more environmentally friendly as we do not produce waste film developing chemicals any more. We hope to integrate these services to our computer system so that lab results, x-rays and scans can be stored directly onto patient records (this is a work in progress at the moment).
Our surgical suite uses oxygen concentrators to produce oxygen from room air (still feels like magic) and sevofluorane anaestheia which smooths both induction and shortens recovery times. Animals recover quickly and have little 'hangover' post anaesthesia. Sevofluorane has particular safety benefits when used on our 'furry' patients of all species, so that routine neutering of both rabbit sexes is now both feasible and safe. Electrosurgery can be used on selected cases to reduce blood loss by both cutting and coagulating in one function, and is particularly useful in complex tumour surgeries.
Gill is happy to treat most species with Acupuncture, and has particular success in treating older dogs with 'wobbly backends', (see the dedicated Acupuncture page) and she will also advise on treating injuries or slow healing wounds with our infra red physiotherapy laser.