Royal Canin has established a new pet weight care team to provide clients with advice, information and training.
The advisors will also provide practical training to all members of practice staff on how to recognise weight problems, communicate appropriately and sensitively with pet owners and treat the problem effectively.
Veterinary nurse Shelley Holden is the first person to join the team. Mrs Holden brings 10 years’ experience as the nurse for the Royal Canin weight management referral clinic at the University of Liverpool – a referral service for overweight dogs and cats.
She said: “I have spent many years dedicating my time caring for overweight pets and the number of cases we see is continuing to rise. It’s really important that, as obesity specialists, we can offer hands-on support to practices to assist them with helping to decrease the number of overweight pets they see.
“Our aim will be to offer specialist training through a number of sessions to practices that wish to improve their weight management clinics.
“We’ll spend time with all members of staff, helping them to feel more confident when dealing with owners who have overweight pets. The training will include all aspects of weight management including how to approach owners, body condition scoring and the 30-minute consult.
“Staff will also be trained on how to support owners throughout the weight loss programme and during the maintenance phase.”
In addition to working with practice staff, the pet weight care team will also work with owners outside the vet practice using Royal Canin’s new mobile weight clinic. They will be able to assist owners by raising awareness of obesity, educating them on the most suitable diet for their pets and offering advice on how to make simple lifestyle changes to make improvements to their pets’ health and well-being.