Burgess Excel Vet Awards announces the shortlist of finalists championing rabbit and guinea pig welfare

The Burgess Excel Vet Awards, which celebrate the hard work of veterinary practices and individuals who work tirelessly to improve the lives of the UK’s pet rabbits and guinea pigs, has announced its shortlist of finalists for 2021.

One winner from each category will receive a trophy and cash prize of £250, which will be presented at this year’s London Vet Show on 11 November. There will also be a digital announcement on Burgess’s social media pages.

A judging panel of industry experts, veterinary professionals, as well as rabbit and guinea pig specialists, have spent the past week assessing hundreds of nominations and self-nominations from veterinary professionals, practices and their clients across the UK.

The finalists in each category are as follows:

Rabbit Vet of the Year

  • Dr Sara Dias, Pride Veterinary Centre, Derbyshire
  • Dr Sophie Jenkins, Origin Vets Clinic, Cardiff
  • Dr Madonna Livingstone, Ark Veterinary Clinic, Coatbridge
  • Dr Nadene Stapleton, Royal Veterinary College, Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital, London
  • Dr Molly Varga Smith, Rutland House Exotics, St Helens

Rabbit Vet Nurse of the Year

  • Heidi Barringer, Wood Green, The Animals Charity, Godmanchester
  • Katie Richmond-Jones, Downland Veterinary Group, Bognor Regis
  • Rachel Sibbald, Abercorn Veterinary Centre, Edinburgh
  • Victoria Stearman, Origin Vets Clinic, South Wales area
  • Adina Valentine, Origin Vets Clinic, South Wales area

Rabbit-friendly Veterinary Practice of the Year

  • Highcroft Exotic Vets, Bristol
  • Origin Vets Clinic, Vale of Glamorgan
  • Quantock Veterinary Hospital, Bridgwater
  • Royal Veterinary College, Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital, London
  • Suffolk Exotic Vets, Suffolk

Rabbit Support Staff of the Year

  • Ellie Wright, Riversmeet Vets, Atherstone
  • Rachel Sanderson, Robert Jones Vet Surgery Blackpool
  • Corinne Voigt-Hill, Vets4Pets, Bangor
  • Donna Robson, Pennard Vets, Sevenoaks
  • Chrystabel Burt, Medivet, Ashford

Rabbit Student of the Year

  • Megan Bailey, Duchy College Rosewarne, Camborne
  • Amy Loverance, Nottingham Veterinary School
  • Sarah McMahon, University of Glasgow
  • Grace Mee, University of Liverpool
  • Tanya Peters, Harper Adams University, Newport, Shropshire

Guinea Pig-friendly Veterinary Practice of the Year

  • CJ Hall Vets, East Sheen, London
  • Derwent Valley Vets, Matlock
  • Highcroft Exotic Vets, Bristol
  • Origin Vets, Cardiff
  • Twickenham Vets, London

The judging panel comprised:

  • Dr Suzanne Moyes MVB, MRCVS, Veterinary Director at Burgess Pet Care and spokesperson for the Rabbit Awareness Action Group (RAAG) and Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW);
  • Rae Walters, Director of the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund (RWAF), the UK’s largest rabbit welfare charity;
  • John Chitty BVetMed CertZooMed MRCVS, Co-Director of a small animals/ exotics practice in Andover and outgoing president of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association 2017-2018;
  • Dani Sewell MICPR, Communications Director at Fred Marketing, a full-service marketing agency specialising in the pet / animal welfare sector and delivering strategic communications for RAAG and RAW.

When drawing up the shortlist of finalists, the panel has looked at a range of criteria for each category, including evidence of exceptional knowledge of rabbit and guinea pig care and husbandry; outstanding care and attention to the needs of owners and their pets; and going above and beyond to improve the lives of rabbits and guinea pigs.

Dr Suzanne Moyes, MVB, MRCVS, Burgess Excel Awards judge and Veterinary Director at Burgess Pet Care, said: “We have been delighted with the fantastic response to this year’s Excel Vet Awards. It’s hugely rewarding to hear about so many veterinary professionals and practices who are going that extra mile to take care of the UK’s rabbits and guinea pigs, despite the additional challenges created by the pandemic in providing high levels of care.

“Once again, the standard of entries we’ve received has been absolutely outstanding, which has made the judging panel’s job very difficult! Congratulations to everyone who has made the shortlist, which in itself is an achievement to be proud of.”

For more information on the Burgess Excel Vet Awards, please visit their website