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Clinic Updates
C.H.A.T. Vetinary Clinic Updates

Clinic News

The Lewisham Neuter and Vaccination Clinic

233-235 Lewisham Way, Lewisham, London, SE4 1UY
Tel: 020 8691 2100
Fax: 020 8691 7776

This is a brilliant video - Spread the word, spaying and Neutering saves lives Watch here
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  • Opened Oct 1995
  • Neuters 150 cats and dogs each week
  • Vaccinates 250 cats and dogs each week
  • Domestic and feral cat rescue/rehoming centre
Click here for current prices

theatre
The Lewisham Neuter Clinic is always busy and is continually adapting and growing in response to the varying needs of the local pet, stray and human population. The success of our programme of establishing low cost neuter clinics has shown first in the South East London area, because of the length of time the Lewisham clinic has been in operation.

Vets

LOW COST TREATMENT

The Clinic is now providing low-cost treatments for certain clients who cannot find help elsewhere. There are many pet owners who fall just outside the benefit requirements to be able to use the local PDSA / RSPCA yet cannot afford the fees of private veterinary surgeons. Even if they are PDSA clients they are only allowed to have three animals treated, so any additional animals would not qualify for treatment. CHAT strongly recommends that owners take out pet insurance for their pets, in order that they will be able to use private veterinary surgeons. However, there are always uninsured pets in need of help and strays in need of attention with existing conditions which insurers would not accept. Consultations are now held every day, with many different medical and surgical cases being treated.

Pics The Clinic is equipped with an X-Ray machine, an ultrasound scanner and haematology/ biochemistry machines, allowing us to run blood tests immediately, thus gaining instant results which are invaluable when diagnosing and treating sick animals.
coco

The Coco Markus Cattery Block

We have completed a much needed new cattery complex to be known as The Coco Markus Cattery Block (pictured above right). The construction of these beautiful buildings was made possible by a generous bequest from the Estate of the late Mrs M H Markus. They provide not only extra accommodation, but a more spacious and better quality stay for the animals. We have also built three additional wards within the new extension to the building.

The final stage of our Lewisham project has not yet been started, due to financial restrictions. This will involve the renovation of the dilapidated warehouse with shopfront behind our newly installed outdoor cattery pens. A property company had been proposing to buy this building in order to develop the site and construct a block of flats. Our intentions remain to convert this building as soon as possible into:
  • A separate reception area
  • A first floor warden's flat for security, and so that the warden is close at hand to provide emergency cover
  • Further extensive indoor rescue accommodation with exterior runs.


Canning Town Celia Hammond Animal Trust Clinic

Canning Town Neuter and Vaccination Clinic

151-153 Barking Road, Canning Town, London, E16 4HQ
Tel: 020 7474 8811
Fax: 020 7476 2971

  • Opened January 1999
  • Neuters 150 cats and dogs each week
  • Vaccinates 250 cats and dogs each week
  • Feral cat neutering service
  • Rescue and rehoming facilites
Click here for current prices

Many peoples' first contact with us is their request for flea products, and this is often not to relieve the suffering of their pets, but because they are being bitten by fleas themselves. At least once they are inside the clinic, we can open up a dialogue and talk about other aspects of their pets' welfare, i.e., vaccination, worming and, of course, neutering.

A lack of care of a pet is often due not to cruelty or indifference, but to simple ignorance of an animal's basic needs, i.e., the lady who kept her kitten tied to a length of washing line in her garden to keep it from being run over, and another new pet owner who was surprised her kitten wouldn't eat the chocolate biscuits she put down for it.

We have found that the percentage of stray and feral cats, where CHAT must bear the cost of neutering and vaccination, has increased.

j There is of course a huge emphasis on neutering and vaccination but the role of the clinic is constantly changing and evolving.
One of our vets has a particular interest in orthopaedics which has saved the Trust a great deal of money in referral costs. We now provide assistance for people whose pets need treatment, and who do not qualify for other charity help, but are on low income and unable to afford private veterinary fees. This clinic has X-Ray facilities, VetScan haematology and bio-chemistry machines and an ultrasound scanner, all helping us to provide a first-class service for needy welfare cases.


staff

Pedigree problems

We have observed a trend that concerns us in our vaccination clinics. When we opened in January 1999, the numbers of pedigree and mongrel puppies were roughly equal but we now find that approximately 80% of the puppies coming through our vaccination clinics are pedigree, often inbred and with resulting health problems. The vast majority of these are Staffordshire Bull Terriers, and we suspect that many people are becoming back-yard breeders as a way of supplementing their income. We have even had to take people to task when we have overheard them talking to other clients in our waiting room, trying to arrange a mating for their dogs. Battersea Dogs Home is also experiencing this trend, with the majority of dogs taken in being pedigree, and mostly 'Bull breed' types.
We never vaccinate whole litters of puppies or kittens unless the mother is spayed at the same time, and because people are always trying to find a way around this, we have printed a section on the vaccination card which shows how much the vaccination has cost, and that it has been done so cheaply on condition that the animal is not offered for sale.








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Kelly, a veterinary nursing assistant helps admit the cats and make them comfortable for the day.

A TYPICAL DAY AT OUR BUSY LEWISHAM VETERINARY CLINIC


The Lewisham clinic is a hive of activity particularly first thing in the morning as animals arrive for operations and at the end of the day when they are reunited with their owners.

8a.m The doors open. Between now and 9a.m the days feline patients begin arriving.

Today there are eight male cats to be castrated and seven female cats to be spayed, Marmalade, an elderly cat requires dental work and Candy a diabetic needs blood sugar monitoring throughout the day to ensure she is receiving the correct level of medication. Plus there are 5 feral cats brought in by the rescue team yesterday which require neutering today a stray with a bad limp needs an X-ray and a 17 year old unwanted pet cat needs urgent dental work.

Kelly, a veterinary nursing assistant and Lee, a trainee veterinary nurse are kept busy admitting the cats and making them comfortable in individual cages.
Vinny, a stray is well on the way to recovery after being admitted with a large infected abcess wound on his face. In the Cat Ward, Claire our Senior nurse is checking on six of the inpatients. Ailments include, Tom who is recovering from an operation to pin a broken leg following a road accident, Tara an elderly cat who has kidney problems and is being rehydrated via a drip, a cat who fell from a 2nd floor balcony, he is lucky he only broke his jaw, it's been pinned and he is being fed via a feeding tube but should make a full recovery. Barney who is being treated for a serious case of urinary crystals which had blocked his bladder. Vinny, who was stray had arrived suffering with a large infected wound on his face but is now recovering nicely.
9a.m The rest of the Veterinary team arrive for the day.
In Consulting room 1, Alex one of our Veterinary surgeons health checks and admits the Dogs that have arrived for operations.

Today brings seven dogs who have been booked in. Two excitable young Staffies, Jack and Ella who are six months old arrive, they are being neutered today – that's very wise as there are so many unwanted Staffordshire Bull Terriers in London. Max a three year old male Yorkshire terrier is also coming in to be neutered. Molly an elderly Spaniel is in desperate need of dental work – her elderly owner is so grateful for our help, she couldn't afford the charge at a private vets. A large German Shepherd Bitch called Sophie arrives to be neutered. Crackle, a two year old Staffordshire Bull Terrier arrives with his new owners, they have just got him from a 'man in the pub', Crackle is a fighter with other dogs in the park, neutering will resolve that plus some advice about dog training classes. Lastly Scruff a crossbreed terrier, she's a loved family pet and her owners are responsible and don't want her to having a litter to add to the numbers of unwanted dogs, so she's being neutered today.
There are also some consultations to be seen in the morning and after the dogs are admitted David, another vet takes over.

Mrs B brings in her 16 year old cat Barney, She is worried, Barney has lost weight recently, but he still eats well and isn't drinking lots. David decides to run a blood test to check the function of Barney's vital organs, he has a suspicion that Barney may have an over active thyroid gland, it's very common in older cats and easily treated with medication and/or surgery. Lee lends a hand to take a blood sample which will be run on our blood diagnostic machine. Mrs B is keen to take an agitated Barney home so David will phone her later with the results.
Over three quarters of dogs seen at our clinics are Staffordshire Bull Terriers or Staffie cross breeds. Mr X arrives with a 18 month old, large male Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross called Billy. Over three quarters of the dogs treated at our clinic are Staffies, they are easily the most popular breed in London. Billy has been in a fight with another Dog in the park, there's not too much damage to Billy but a wound above his eye needs stitching, we expect that the other dog came off worse. David talks to Mr X, Billy is getting into fights because he is unneutered, his hormones are leading to his aggression and in the crowded local dog walking parks Billy will keep being involved in fights. Neutering him will calm him right down. Mr X does want Billy to be a family pet, our vet reassures him that neutering will help him be just that rather than a frustrated animal who will become increasingly harder to handle. Mr X agrees, and Billy is admitted to be stitched and neutered today.
Kishor one of our Veterinary surgeons Mr W brings in a stray cat from his work place, a local car breakers. “Buster” is oily and grimy and needs neutering, David admits him to be neutered and cleaned up, fortunately Mr W wants to take him home as a pet – the rescue centre is really full so that's good news for Buster.

Meanwhile Alex and Flavia, a veterinary nurse and Kishor, another veterinary surgeon and Marcia a veterinary nurse have embarked on the days canine operations. There are two operating theatres and the dogs need to have had their operations in the morning and recovered from their anaesthetics in time to go home later in the afternoon.
Daisy 10.30 a.m After the mornings consultations David does the rounds checking on the in patients with the assistance of Claire. David gives the ok for Tara's drip to be removed and she can go home.

Next on to the rescue centre which adjoins the clinic and is a temporary home to over 100 stray and unwanted animals mainly cats.
The animal care staff are concerned about Daisy an elderly stray who was brought in 3 days ago. Efforts are being made to trace her owner but in the meantime there is concern that Daisy is drinking a lot of water. David decides to take a blood sample which reveals kidney problems, Daisy is started on medication and her diet changed to a special prescription diet.
A litter of five feral kittens aged 10-11 weeks have arrived along with their mother in the early hours, they were brought in by two members of the rescue team who have been spending many hours rescuing cats at a local waste recycling depot, it's a dangerous place where kittens are a risk of being crushed under heavy machinery.
One kitten has a limp and they are all very grubby with 'sticky' eyes, hopefully it's conjunctivitis due to the dirty living conditions rather than cat flu, they have been isolated from other cats just to be sure.
Mum is feral and will be checked thoroughly whilst she is under anaesthetic being neutered tomorrow.
David and Flavia neutering a dog Just then a cat is brought into the clinic, it's been found lying by the side of the road, David is the only free vet and needs to attend to this emergency, the kittens will be seen later this afternoon.
She is obviously someone's pet and is cold and shocked, First aid treatment is promptly administered, and she is placed on a drip to stabilise her before her injuries can be fully assessed. She isn't microchipped and her collar hasn't any I.D. The rescue team will organise putting up Posters where she was found.

Midday The dogs are all neutered and most of the female cats. Kelly and Lee, the nursing assistants keep a close eye on the animals as they wake up. There is always plenty for the nursing assistants to do, nursing sick animals, sterilizing equipment and the surgical drapes, stock taking and ordering as well as endless cleaning.

During the afternoon the rest of the cats operations are completed, owned cats are first as they need to recover from anaesthetic before going home. Remaining time is used for operations on cats that are in the care of the rescue centre for rehoming or strays and feral cats in to be neutered and returned.
Lee and Eva, a vet bandage a kitten's broken leg. The RTA cat has improved and is fit for an X-ray, which reveals a fractured pelvis and jaw. Her pelvis will need 6 weeks cage rest to heal itself, her jaw will need surgery, but she should pull through.

3-4p.m the veterinary nurses are consulting, dogs that have been neutered 10 days ago return for their post-op checks, where their wounds are checked to ensure they have healed well.

4-5p.m Today's dogs are collected by their owners, they have to go home by car and instructions regarding care and feeding that evening, gentle exercise over the next week and to call our duty vet if they are concerned in any way about their pet are relayed to each owner.

Billy the Staff who had been involved in a fight has a course of antibiotics as does Molly the Spaniel who had dental work, she will need soft food for a few days.

The owner of the cat involved in the road accident has seen one of our posters and has arrived at the clinic. She is distressed to see her cat “Myrtle” hurt but is relieved that at least she is alive. Claire reassures her that Myrtle is in safe hands and should recover.
The litter of feral kittens The feral kittens get their check up, all are well, four females and a male, so potentially they could have produced a lot more feral kittens if we hadn't rescued them. The rescue team also bring in four cats that have been shut in a flat for four days following the death of their owner, Alex the vet checks them over, they are hungry and riddled with fleas but will be okay.
In between everything else, the vets fit in reading blood tests results, biopsy results, discussing X-rays and treatment cases and calling clients to discuss results and treatment plans for their pets.
4-5p.m Afternoon general consultation appointments start again at 4p.m for an hour, but often run later as urgent cases arrive to needing attention. 15 animals are booked in, the ailments include, kittens with fleas, a dog with a skin complaint, a cat with cystitis, an elderly dog needing more arthritis medication, a newly diagnosed diabetic cat referred from a private vet, his un insured owners can no longer afford private veterinary fees.
Scooby 5.30 p.m Natalie, one of the rescue team arrives with a thin, dehydrated cat, riddled with fleas and limping, they name her Scooby and she is treated for fleas , put on a drip and made comfortable for the night, she will be blood tested and reassessed tomorrow.

5.30 - 6.30p.m All the cats that were neutered today are collected by their owners.

6.30 p.m Now at the end of the day the nurses and veterinary assistants clean up in preparation for tomorrow.

Tomorrow is the busiest day of the week, there is a vaccination clinic, 80 puppies, kittens and cats and dogs will come through the clinic for vaccinations but also a health check, wormers, flea treatment and microchipping.
Tonight - Marcia and Alex are on call for emergencies, if an owner is concerned about their pet who has been operated on or if the rescue team pick up a very sick animal that cannot wait until the morning then the vet is available to see the animal.

Last night a pregnant dog, another Staffordshire Bull terrier was having trouble giving birth, she had to be rushed in for an emergency caesarean. The mother was neutered before being stitched up. Hopefully a quieter night tonight.
As the nurse on duty Marcia also does the evening rounds, administering medications and checking on the inpatients.





Hilary neutering a female cat

A VET'S EYE VIEW - By Hilary a Vet at our Canning Town Branch


"As I drove to work one morning recently, the Breakfast Programme on the radio was discussing what would be the "best job in the world". As one of the vets at the Celia Hammond Animal Trust (CHAT) I thought I might be one of those lucky few who have just that - The Best Job in the World.

I listen to a lot of breakfast radio as I leave home at 7.20am each morning just to be sure of arriving at Canning Town by 9am, but the unpredictable traffic through the Blackwall Tunnel is the only down-side to my day. As soon as I arrive at the clinic the journey is forgotten as I join the busy team of vets, nurses, rescue workers, reception staff and volunteers. One of the main aims of CHAT is to provide low cost neutering and vaccinating, and part of a vet's day is doing just that: spaying, castrating and vaccinating cats and dogs. However, our routing clinic appointments ensure that we see a wide range of medical and surgical problems from diabetes to diarrhoea, bite wounds to broken legs. The clinc provides low cost veterinary treatment for those who cannot afford regular vet's fees.
Hilary operating on a dogs leg. In the current "Credit Crunch" the demand on our services is increasing by the day and we see many "referrals". Cats have a habit of not checking the traffic before crossing the road and we see serious road traffic injuries every day, many of these are referred to us by other veterinary practices. This is a part of the vet's job which is particulary challenging. The most common injuries we see are broken bones: jaw; limbs; pelvis, each needing a different orthopaedic repair. Such patients are in shock and in pain so intravenous fluids and pain relief are the first priorities after which we work on the specific injuries. Every case is different, but fixing the problem and returning a much loved pet to his or her owner makes all the hard work worthwhile.

As one of the vets, I am lucky not to be particularly involved with the financial side of things, so it is wonderful to be able to provide all this care without having to turn people and their pets away just because they cannot afford treatment. Without the fundraisers and donations we would not be able to do what we do, so a huge thank you must go to all those who make it possible for me to have The Best Job In the World."



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