After over 18 years as a small animal vet it is safe to call Melanie an experienced old hand. She qualified in 1996 from the Veterinary University Hanover in her native Germany and after six years working on the continent she fulfilled her dream and moved to England.
“I always get asked why I came to the UK and it is really quite simple: I love the people, the countryside and the tea. I only found out about the exceptionally high standard of veterinary work over here when I actually started my first job in Wolverhampton.”
Melanie spend ten years faithfully looking after pets in the Midlands and improving her skills along the way. But the pull of the mountains proved too strong and after many a happy holiday in the Lake District Melanie moved to Appleby in early 2013 and took up a position at a small animal practice in Co. Durham. As soon as Vets4Pets advertised the new practice in Penrith Melanie knew this was where she wanted to work, combining the advantage of a top modern, brand new, purpose built surgery with being able to live amongst her beloved hills.
“I get really excited if I can just quickly hike up Blencathra after work and still be home for bed in time!”
As a genuine general practitioner Melanie is happy to look after your pet whatever the problem. She has developed some specific “pet-subjects” and undertaken further studies and training over the years. The care of the geriatric patient is especially close to her heart.
“With regular examinations and a few additional laboratory tests it is amazing how much difference individually targeted medication can make to the quality of life of an old dog, cat or rabbit. The challenge is in the combination of diseases an OAP pet may suffer from and balancing therapy to achieve maximum benefit. One patient may for example need heart tablets, arthritis drugs and physiotherapy sessions. There is also the constant progress of age related diseases which needs to be monitored. Repeated examinations and follow up consultations are helpful to keep up with the ever changing conditions of my patients.”
In addition, Melanie enjoys soft tissue surgery and is focussing her professional development on the operating side at the moment. She is also a passionate advocate of dental treatments for pets.
“Dental disease is the most common, most underdiagnosed and undertreated cause of pain in dogs, cats and rabbits. We have to understand that our pets will not stop eating until they are in absolute agony and have probably suffered for weeks or months without us noticing. I am thrilled to have the whole range of modern dentist’s tools available at Vets4Pets Penrith to provide the care our pet friends deserve.”
If you haven’t met Melanie at the surgery yet, the best place to find her is on top of a fell or cycling along a country lane. She is easily recognised by a little ginger 3-legged terrier called Roo who is regularly put into the rucksack when her legs get tired. The evenings are spend in front of the fire with a good book or a chat with dear friends.
“I have turned into a tour operator for England walking holidays and I love showing off my gorgeous Cumbria to German family and friends.”