The RCVS singled out Dot's pioneering work to raise awareness of what VNs do, as one of the reasons for her award. Speaking to the veterinary press, the RCVS VN Council Chairman Kathy Kissick said, "Dot has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of VNs within the profession and with the public. She has always supported the student veterinary nurse in training and leads by example at all times, inspiring nurses to stay in or return to practice even when life changes their circumstances. Dot is an inspiration to many nurses and always commits 100 per cent to the welfare of the animals in her care, and to the clients. I congratulate her on achieving this award."
During her long and varied career Dot has held numerous roles including: head nurse, senior surgical nurse at a veterinary teaching hospital, training manager for a large chain of London practices, assistant examiner and nursing in New Zealand.
Dot said, "It was a complete shock and I was overwhelmed to be honoured with this award. Veterinary Nursing means a lot to me and it has been great to be part of and see, the profession develop in such a short space of time. It's only 54 years since the first veterinary nurses started to train. We have a robust training scheme, are pushing and advancing the boundaries of VN practice, we are seeing VNs branch out into different fields of clinical practice and we are officially recognised as a regulated profession. Its a great time to start training!"
The annual VN Awareness event is in its 10th year and more practices across the country get involved each year involving themselves in their communities. "As a practice, our community presence is important. We aim to send out messages about responsible pet ownership, the importance of the human-animal bond, highlight the role of the veterinary nurse and promote this career whenever we can. We do this by visiting pre-schools and schools with our pets, taking class assemblies, talking to adult groups, visiting care homes and opening all our doors during practice events like our Open Days, to name but a few. I am lucky to work in a team of 18 dedicated and committed RVNs who share my same beliefs. Whether it is to educate owners on the importance of worming their pets monthly or nursing pets with lifelong illnesses, the pets' welfare comes first for all of us."
Dot attended the awards ceremony with husband, vet and Millennium Director Robin Creighton and their two children. She is now the proud owner of the engraved RCVS Jubilee Award bowl and scroll.
Well done Dot!