Dear Reader

This issue marks the end of yet another year of hard work on the part of the VNJ publishing team and now that I have taken a back seat I feel justified in saying a big thank you to all involved, especially Dot Creighton who is stepping down from the Editorial Board and who has been such a stalwart over the past few years. Dot is an excellent example of someone who combines enthusiasm with hard work and she will be a hard act to follow.

On the subject of endings, last month saw the first anniversary of the loss of Hamish, my old Border Terrier – it’s hard to believe that a year has passed so quickly! Percy my other Border has done his best to fill the void, mainly by eating for two when given the chance! My experience as a nurse in practice taught me that the bond between pets and their owners is a very special one and for that reason I have chosen the Cinnamon Trust as my charity of the year for 2011. Many of you will be familiar with their work but for those of you who are not, they work very hard to support that pet/owner bond especially in the case of the elderly and their pets. I have a special affinity for ‘senior citizens’ perhaps because I am virtually there myself and I do find the way that our society banishes older people to the periphery of everyday life very hard. A society should be measured by the way it treats its weaker members and our record of looking after both our pets and our old folk leaves something to be desired! Before I start harking back to the ‘good old days, when life really was hard and you were doing very well if you lived to the age of 50, I will just say that the charity’s founder Averil Jarvis MBE has written an article to introduce their work and some of the stalwarts that live in their two shelters.

Veterinary nurses play a vital role in supporting owners as well as their patients, and it is my belief that if we can be instrumental in bringing about even a small change in the way that society views the relationship between older people and their pets, we will have more than proved our worth! Most of you are still in the prime of your lives but put yourself in the place of an elderly person whose only company is their cat. Then think about how you would feel if you were told that you were to be relegated to a nursing home and your only companion could not come with you and faced euthanasia?

This issue brings news via the RCVS column that the disciplinary system for RVNs will finally be introduced next April. It provides further confirmation that the College is committed to the regulation of veterinary nurses but it is a small step rather than a leap towards the statutory register that we all aspire to. Let’s hope the ongoing work towards a new VSA will bear fruit sooner rather than later.

Finally I would like to wish you all a happy Christmas and very best wishes for the coming year!


Sue Badger MEd CertEd VN Editor-in-Chief

• VOL 25 • No 12 • December 2010 • Veterinary Nursing Journal