Claire graduated from the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies (University of Edinburgh) in 1999 before going into mixed practice for 7 months in Hampshire. Subsequently she proceeded to work in small animal practice for 18 months in the Luton area before undertaking a 6 month camelid research fellowship under Dr David Anderson at The Ohio State University. OSU had the largest hospital farm animal caseload in the United States and was seeing an impressive 1500 camelid patients per year during Claire’s time there.
Following the initial research fellowship, she undertook a 3 year large animal internal medicine residency where she attained her Master’s degree and Diplomate status with the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. Subsequently, she completed a 1 year clinical instructorship in Camelid Medicine at OSU. Claire crossed back over the Pond in February 2007 to establish the Camelid Medicine & Reproduction Referral Service at the Royal Veterinary College in February 2007. This was part of the Farm Animal & Camelid Clinical Service, also newly established, and its aim was to integrate individual animal medicine for both farm animals and camelids into the veterinary curriculum at the RVC. Sadly, higher education funding cuts meant that a camelid position was considered a “luxury item”, so Claire took the opportunity to establish Camelid Veterinary Services (as of May 2011) to better serve the Camelid Industry in the UK and further afield. In February 2016, she was awarded Recognised Specialist Status with the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, making her the first and only recognised specialist in Camelid Health & Production in the UK.
Claire’s interests all revolve around camelid medicine and reproduction but are quite varied in this field. She is especially interested in Neonatal Medicine and Neurological Disease in camelids. She is also interested in Camelid reproductive problems, and has been taught how to perform embryo transfer in camelids by Jane Vaughan of Cria Genesis (Australia).
Since arriving in the UK, Claire has undertaken a Bluetongue vaccination study that assessed antibody responses to the Bovilis BTV8 vaccine (Intervet) in alpacas. This was extremely helpful in terms of providing advice to camelid owners on the most appropriate vaccination regime for this disease in camelids. She is supervising a couple of undergraduate studies into camelid gastrointestinal parasitism, and is hoping to undertake a prevalence study into Bovine Viral Diarrheoa (BVD) Virus in camelids with Professor Joe Brownlie at the RVC in the future. She hopes to continue collaborative research projects with staff at the RVC and other institutions in the UK in order to continue to advance camelid literature.
Claire’s Master’s degree was based on vitamin D deficiency and rickets in camelids. She looked at the effects of Vitamin D supplementation of the dam on cria Vitamin D status. She would like to continue this research by investigating the effect of UV lighting on vitamin D concentrations in camelids during the winter.
Please see the RESEARCH pages for more information about Claire’s publications and research activities.
Although her formal teaching at the Royal Veterinary College has ceased temporarily, Claire hopes to continue to offer camelid learning opportunities to veterinary students from the Summer of 2011. Check back for details of special courses for veterinary students in the near future…
Claire is also actively involved in running courses for owners and vets interested in working with camelid species. See UPCOMING COURSES for more information about current courses on offer.
Claire has previously developed a camelid Venipuncture model in conjunction with a model-builder in the United States. One of these is kept at our clinic and is a useful tool enabling students and vets to learn how to take jugular blood samples from camelids and how to place intravenous catheters without needing to use live animals.