Conferences and Continuing Education

Our vet attends courses and conferences on small animal medicine, horse medicine, cattle medicine and alpaca medicine, and anything else from which learning can be achieved.

Australian Conferences: This year, being 2017, Kathy has attended an orthopaedic course on the latest technique in cruciate repair in dogs which was held in Brisbane, has attended on-line webinars on updates in dog and cat medicine and surgery, has travelled to the UQ Vet School at Gatton to attend an occasional large animal seminar and also hugely enjoyed a day at the Veterinary Summit at Mt Cootha at which one of Kathys' heroes, Nobel Prize Winner Prof. Peter Doherty spoke. The days' programme was duly autographed and remains on display at the clinic. In 2016, Kathy flew to Darwin to attend the Food Futures Conference at which the Australian export beef industry was discussed by industry and the relevant QLD and NT Govt Ministers. Information gained assisted in preparing a Research Project for the Masters in Animal Studies (Farm Consultancy) which Kathy is currently undertaking.  A quick weekend trip to Melbourne for the Alpaca Vets annual meeting (and spectating at an AFL game) was also managed during that year. The year prior, Kathy flew to Tasmania to attend the Australian Cattle Vets, Sheep Vets and Alpaca Vets Conference and met 2 renowned veterinary specialist speakers on beef reproduction, who manage and research  large beef operations in South America. In 2010, Kathy attended the Australian Cattle Vets Conference at Alice Springs.  These conferences high-lighted practical treatments for many routine large animal procedures as well as introducing new ideas. Access to on-line courses and conferences these days means not having to leave the practice, yet still gaining great up-to-date information. 

Overseas Conferences: Kathy travelled to South Africa in December 2018 to attend an intensive 2 weeks veterinary study course on Wild Animals, including lion, Cape buffalo, hyena, rhinoceros, zebra, antelope and giraffe. Apart from lectures on conservation and the human-animal interaction, lectures and practical training were also provided with animal, bird, trees and grasses identifications for eco-data collections in the field. Such training will prove invaluable for working here in Australia with our own wildlife. The group travelled extensively within the game reserve, on the back of utes and were able to be closely approached by the wild animals, often within metres. Being accredited herself for darting tranquillization, Kathy was particularly pleased to observe and participate in several darting procedures on rhino, hyena and Blesbok (a small type of antelope). The groups also went on guided walks within the reserve.

In July 2017, Kathy flew to Java, Indonesia to participate in an FEI (International Federation for Equestrian Sports) General Course in order to maintain her FEI Endurance Vet accreditations. This was a very valuable trip as apart from meeting many other veterinarians from Indonesia, Malaysia, the UAE and India, Kathy gained further insights into the FEI and its' equine sport protocols.

The previous year, Kathy attended an FEI Veterinary Course in Palmerston North, NZ.  In 2013, our vet Kathy travelled to the USA to attend the International Camelid Conference at Corvallis, Oregon. Apart from several days of lectures, the trip included a visit to the Rain Dance Llama Ranch in Newberg, Oregon, which boasted its'own shoppe and has an Australian Champion Female in its' breeding herd. Further on, there was a visit to an alpaca farm owned by CamelidDynamics owner Marty McGee Bennett which included demonstrations of how to train alpacas. In 2011, Kathy participated in the Australian Alpaca Vet tour and Conference in Peru which was very exciting and educational. In this vibrant country, Llamas and alpacas and their handlers could be seen walking the streets and posing for photos. Up on the Antiplano (highlands) above 3000m, and in the culture centres, the occasional vicuna or guanaco could also be spotted.There was so much to see and learn about the different cultures and common use of the camelids in Pre-Incan, Incan and Spanish times. The Incalpaca textile factory in Arequipa highlighted the manual labour needed, and the methods used in production of the finest alpaca and vicuna garments. On her return, Kathy gave a short talk to interested alpaca clients, highlighting her camelid experiences in Peru accompanied by a slide show and tables covered in Peruvian cultural items.

In 2009, Kathy attended the Alpaca Conference in Ireland also organized by the Australian Alpaca Vets. The speakers included lecturers from universities in the US and Europe. This included a visit to an alpaca farm on the west coast. These Conferences provide both great educational and cultural experiences for our veterinarian and have been of enormous benefit to both our vet and thus also to our alpaca clients and alpaca patients. 

Additional Qualifications:

Kathy is currently undertaking a Masters in Animal Studies (Farm Consultancy) with plans to complete in 2018. Subjects successfully completed thus far include Statistics and Experimental Design, Agricultural Financial Management, a Research Dissertation  and several minor Research Projects based on local beef, dairy and alpaca farms.

Having a special interest in wild animals since University days, in late 2017 Kathy became accredited in tranquillization restraint methods using darting. This coincided with a trip to South Africa to experience veterinary darting of dangerous wild animals at close range. 

In 2009, Kathy successfully sat her Membership exams in Medicine of Horses.The intensive study leading up to this qualification was very stimulating and rewarding and included a full year of study via Distance Education through the University of Sydney.

Kathy has also successfully achieved an intensive course in the Essentials of Equine Dentistry Post-Graduate Workshop which focused on the correct and professional use of the Power float, and has also attended several Bain-Fallon Conferences (equine) and successfully completed a horse  endoscopy workshop in Newcastle. 

Kathy also passed stringent criteria and testing to gain her BBSE (Bull Breeding Soundness Examinations) accreditation in 2012 and some years earlier had gained Cattle Pregnancy Testing accreditation. In addition, Kathy is an active member of the local SB Toastmasters group and enjoys competing in speech competitions. 

Endurance: Kathy is an FEI 4* accredited Endurance Vet and 4* Endurance Treating Vet, as well as an accredited AERA vet. Several times a year, Kathy spends time at rides around Queensland and interstate, and even travelled to Dubai in 2006 to assist the assistant team veterinarian at a World Championships. In 2017, Kathy travelled to the South Island, NZ, to act as a line vet for a 4* Event, but accepted the role of Foreign Veterinary Delegate at short notice to keep the Event afloat. Previously, Kathy had acted as Foreign Veterinary Delegate at the New Zealand Championships in the North Island in 2013. In 2014, our vet was Treatment Vet for both the Qld State Championships held in Clifton and the Victorian FEI State Championships held at Bet Bet (out in the middle of the country somewhere...). In 2011, Kathy was Head Vet at the QERA State Championships at Jericho in Central QLD. Another role Kathy was proud to hold was that of Honorary State Vet for QERA for several years to end of 2014, which involved considerable time working on various Committees and beginning implementation of Hendra protocols within Endurance. In addition, Kathy has also been honoured to work as either of line vet or treatment vet (or occasionally both) at several prestigious Quilty Rides (100 mile events founded by Tom Quilty and RM Williams) including two at Boonah, one at Nanango, one at Wagin in WA in 2014, and one at Wisemans Ferry in NSW in 2015. Kathy has also vetted at Trans-Tasman Events and many other rides over the years.  

All members of our team are encouraged to study and achieve. Karrie has achieved her Certificate II in Animal Studies, and apart from running our front desk, also sides as our very competent Puppy Pre-School Instructor. Check our noticeboard for when these courses are being run.