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Companion Animal

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Ngaio is Associate Professor in Applied Ethology and Animal Welfare Science and Co-director of the Massey University Animal Welfare Science and Bioethics Centre. Her research employs behavioural and physiological methods to investigate various aspects of animal welfare in both domestic and wild animal species. Major research themes include: Systematic scientific evaluation of animal welfare; Breathlessness in animals; Humane methods of ‘euthanasia’ and slaughter; Developmental processes, recognition, modulation and alleviation of pain in farm animals; Humane vertebrate pest control; and Welfare impacts associated with wildlife conservation activities.

Anthony graduated from Melbourne University with a Bachelor of Veterinary Science in 1978 and a Bachelor of Dental Science in 1998. He became and Member of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in small animal surgery in 1992 and veterinary dentistry in 1993. Between 2001 and 2008, Anthony worked at the University of Melbourne as an Associate Professor in Veterinary Dentistry as well as consulting in veterinary dentistry at the university veterinary clinic and hospital. Since 2009, he has been an Adjunct Associate Professor and consultant/lecturer in veterinary dentistry at James Cook University alongside being a consultant in veterinary dentistry at the North Coast Veterinary Specialists and Referral Centre in Queensland. Anthony also works as a general practice dentist on the Sunshine Coast. Anthony has been an Examiner in Veterinary Dentistry for the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists and President of the Australian Veterinary Dental Society. At two separate times he was the Convenor of Pet Dental Health Month (Australia). Anthony has lectured and chaired veterinary dentistry workshops all over the world and is a published author of two chapters and a number of peer reviewed articles.

Fiona has been involved in sales since the age of thirteen when she started out in retail working holidays and after school. Her sales career has seen her working in a diverse range of industries from TNT couriers, financial services of Dun & Bradstreet through to Regional Television and the well-known radio channel MORE FM. All of her roles involved selling intangibles which made building strong relationships the key to her sales success. In every arena of sales she was a national and international achiever. Fiona became involved with Dale Carnegie® 15 years ago. During this time earning a National achievement as Business Coach of the Year six years running. Internationally she was recognized for her sales achievements four years running while she recently earned herself the status of being in the Top 1% of trainers amongst 3,500 trainers worldwide. Since then she has trained in Internal Communications, Lominger Behavioural competencies and Neuro Linguistic Training (NLP) to a Practitioner level. While she is not involved in sales these days her main focus is training, from Management to Customer service. Her passion is seeing people succeed and realize their true potential. She has worked with over four thousand people and hundreds of companies and still gets a buzz out of motivating others.

Kat graduated from the University of Cambridge in 2006 and following internship and residency at Massey University became a diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2016. Kat enjoys all areas of surgery (though maybe not routine orthopaedics) but has a special interest in soft tissue and oncologic surgery. She is enrolled in a PhD which aims to answer the question “What is a good brachycephalic?”. Happily, she owns the best dog in the world and when not at work can be found on an adventure somewhere in New Zealand or in a café planning one.

Brendan is representing the Veterinary Business Group and presenting the results of a job-sizing project they have being carrying out.

Following graduation from the University of Queensland (UQ) in 1991 Michael practiced as a companion animal veterinarian for 10 years in Sydney, Brisbane and the United Kingdom (UK) He returned from the UK in early 2001 to complete an Honours degree in Psychology and then a PhD about training veterinarians in communication and consultation skills and the human-animal bond. During this time he continued to practice as a veterinarian and was employed as a lecturer at UQ, teaching veterinary students about communication skills and other non-technical competencies (ethics, human-animal bond, euthanasia and managing client grief, improving mental health and well-being etc.). In 2011 he travelled to Canada for a tenure track position at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) University of Guelph) researching and teaching into their Art of Veterinary Medicine program and training students at their Primary Healthcare Centre. He returned “down under” and “across the ditch” in 2015 and continues to practice as a veterinarian and holds adjunct positions at Massey University and OVC.

Crystal graduated in 2007 from the Ontario Veterinary College in Canada. Following this she completed a one year internship at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville in the USA before immigrating to New Zealand. She spent three years in mixed animal practice, before making the transition to companion animal practice. Over the last seven years she has developed a keen focus in small animal dentistry and passed her memberships in Small Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery with the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in 2016. Crystal has attended multiple continuing education events both internationally and locally and recently presented at the World Veterinary Dental Congress on the Gold Coast which was held in conjunction with the 2017 FASAVA Congress. She started up a referral dentistry practice in 2015 called "the Pet Dentist" which is run alongside a general practice with CareVets Hamilton South in Hamilton, offering general dentistry as well as advanced procedures on companion animals, including pocket pets. Crystal has provided in-house clinical training on practical dentistry in dogs, cats and rabbits to multiple practices in the North Island. She is keen to inspire more veterinarians with her love of dentistry and continue providing high quality dental care to pets.

Becky has been employed as Veterinarian for Dogs NZ (previously New Zealand Kennel Club) since November 2016, the first to fill the role for the organisation. Prior to that she worked as a clinical veterinarian for four years. Becky now splits her time between her two young daughters, her part-time role as Canine Health & Welfare Officer for Dogs NZ and her own practice which is limited to canine reproduction. Becky enjoys the pursuit of bridging the gap between responsible dog breeders and veterinarians. Her ultimate goal from this collaboration, is that every puppy in New Zealand is born to the highest health and welfare standard possible.

Valerie was born in Quebec, Canada and graduated from University of Montreal in 1998. She started working at the University of Wisconsin in 1999 where she acquired her Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (Oncology) in 2003. From there, Valerie moved to Switzerland and began work at the University of Zurich in 2003 working as a Medical and Radiation Oncologist and acquired Diplomate status of the American College of Veterinary Radiology (Radiation Oncology) in 2006. In 2007 she moved to Australia and joined the team at Brisbane Veterinary Specialist Centre and helped build the first radiation facility for pets in the southern hemisphere. Valerie moved to Guelph, Canada in August 2011 and was part of the Animal Cancer Centre as a radiation oncologist. In July 2015, she moved back to the South Pacific as a senior lecturer in medical oncology at Massey University.

Dawn graduated from Onderstepoort (OP) South Africa in 1991, having previously studied and taught food and industrial Microbiology. She spent four years in mixed clinical and emergency practice in the UK, where she undertook a residency at the RVC which culminated in an MSc in October 1997. Dawn returned to South Africa and studied an Honours in Clinical Pathology (OP), working concurrently in diagnostics and small animal practice. In November 1999 dawn came to New Zealand working as a diagnostic veterinary clinical pathologist, with some part time small animal clinical locum work. She is currently based at Gribbles Hamilton, but is also involved in part time teaching overseas.

Janine graduated as a vet from Massey University in 1997. She worked in a mixed practice in Southland for two years before travelling to the United Kingdom to work as a companion animal vet and travel the globe. Her passion for dentistry developed when she returned to New Zealand in 2008. Aware of the massive changes that have taken place in the field since graduating, she attended a number of continuing education courses in dentistry in New Zealand and overseas. In 2016 she attained membership to the Australian and NZ College of Veterinary Surgeons in Small Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery. She continues to locum in general practice in Christchurch and in 2016 started a dental referral service Pet Dentistry Ltd. She sees referral cases from anywhere in the South Island from a Christchurch clinic. Janine has given presentations on dentistry to NZVA regional branches in the South Island. Her goal is to inspire other vets to increase their standard of care and knowledge in the field of dentistry.

Lab is a facilitator, learning and performance consultant and former veterinarian. His company, Bats, specializes in helping businesses achieve aligned action to enhance team performance and customer engagement. He strongly believes the development of knowledge-sharing relationships is vital to both of these. He also believes that selling can be done differently and is an integral part of the advisory relationship. Lab is a Fellow of the Institute for Learning Professionals and the author of a book entitled “Customers as Learners”.


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