Neil Palmer BVSc, MSc (Clin Onc), MRCVS and Kirsty Chippendale, Dip AVN, RVN have launched Cancer Care for Pets, an oncology referral service based out of Donaldson's Veterinary Group Hospital in Huddersfield.

Cancer Care for Pets offers both clinical and palliative care for pets with cancer, supporting the work of the first opinion team at Donaldson's and taking referral cases from far and wide. 

Neil and Kirsty have worked in practice together in the Yorkshire area for seven years, working with owners and families to create treatment plans involving diagnostic investigations, specialised imaging, surgery, chemotherapy and palliative care.

Neil said: "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.”

Neil said: "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.” 

Neil and Kirsty are supported by a third member of the Cancer Care for Pets team, oncology nurse Jenna Carrick RVN. 

Cancer Care for Pets is now accepting referrals. Contact: or 01484 242911.

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