The BSAVA awards recognise outstanding contributions in the field of small animal veterinary practice. They give the veterinary profession's unsung heroes much deserved recognition during the award ceremony at BSAVA Congress.
2020 Award Winners
Congratulations to all of the recent award winners! With the absence of Congress 2020, all awards are being delivered to the winners.
The Amoroso Award sponsored by Hill's Pet Nutrition
This award was instituted in memory of the late Professor EC Amoroso of the Royal Veterinary College. This award is kindly sponsored by Hill’s Pet Nutrition and takes the form of BSAVA manuals of the awardee’s choice and a cheque. This award is presented for Alison’s innovative teaching at Bristol University Veterinary School.
BA Hons BVM&S DipCABC PhD MRCVS FHEA
Alison Blaxter’s career has centred on small animal practice and teaching. She graduated from the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in 1981 and after a period of voluntary work abroad was in mixed practice in Suffolk until moving to the University of Bristol. Postgraduate training and roles in referral small animal medicine, clinical research and teaching based at the PDSA led to her present post. In 1995, Alison was appointed to develop the Small Animal Practice at Bristol Vet School as a teaching resource. She continues to lead the teaching in primary care as a clinician and has created, led and delivers a professional competencies curriculum within the school. This involves lecturing, small group teaching, practicals and research into teaching methods. She remains committed to developing novel teaching and is a BILT (Bristol Institute of Learning and Teaching) Associate. Her innovative approach to teaching has been recognised by awards within the school, and by the university with an award for excellence in teaching in Health Sciences. She estimates that she has personally mentored the development of first opinion consulting skills of over 3000 Bristol veterinary graduates!
The Melton Award sponsored by Royal Canin
This award, sponsored by Royal Canin, is presented to the first named author of the best published paper on small animal surgery in the Journal of Small Animal Practice during the 12 months ending 30 September. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals and a cheque. This award is presented for Frances’ article "A modified temporary tracheostomy in dog: outcomes and complications in 21 dogs (2012 to 2017)".
BVSc CertSAS DipECVS MRCVS
Frances Bird qualified from Bristol University in 2011 and following a brief period in farm animal practice moved into small animal first opinion work. Working in first opinion practice in Wiltshire, she completed her RCVS certificate in small animal surgery in 2007 and relocated to a private referral hospital in Derby. Following a break from academic study to start a family Frances started her ECVS residency in small animal surgery in 2014. Frances now works as a member of a five-surgeon team at Pride Veterinary Centre. Her main clinical interests are wound management and emergency surgery.
The Simon Award sponsored by Veterinary Instrumentation
This award is presented annually for contributions to the advancement of small animal surgery by a qualified veterinarian. Simon, a Golden Retriever owned by Mr J. Thomas, a blind telephone operator, also became blind and had his sight restored by surgery, thus enabling him to resume his full duties as a guide dog. Mr Thomas, in appreciation of the work and surgical skill which had made this possible, inaugurated and made this award at the 1962 Annual Congress. The award takes the form of a statuette of ‘Simon’, BSAVA manuals and a cheque and is kindly sponsored by Veterinary Instrumentation.
Professor Nicholas Bacon
MA VetMB CertVR CertSAS DipECVS DipACVS FRCVS
Nick Bacon is an ACVS Founding Fellow of Surgical Oncology and RCVS Specialist in Surgical Oncology. He is Clinical Director of Fitzpatrick Referrals Oncology and Soft Tissue, and Professor of Surgical Oncology at the University of Surrey School of Veterinary Medicine.
The Woodrow Award
This award is presented for contributions to the advancement of small animal medicine by a qualified veterinarian. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals, a cheque and President’s artwork and is in memory of C.E. Woodrow, a founder member of the Association and, of course, its first President.
Dr Adam Gow
BVM&S PhD DSAM DipECVIM-CA FHEA MRCVS
Adam Gow worked for 9 years in a variety of small animal, emergency and charity hospitals before returning to The University of Edinburgh to complete a residency in small animal internal medicine and then a PhD at the Roslin Institute. His research and clinical interests include liver disease, hepatic encephalopathy, production of hepatocytes from canine stem cell sources and point of care testing. He has published and lectured extensively in these areas. He is currently head of small animal internal medicine at Edinburgh, where he combines clinical work, teaching and research.
The J.A. Wight Memorial Award sponsored by Blue Cross
This award is presented annually by the Blue Cross animal welfare charity to a veterinary surgeon who has made outstanding contributions to the welfare of companion animals. The award takes the form of an inscribed figure and a cheque.
Dr Sam Joseph
BSc BVSc MRCVS
Sam Joseph qualified from Bristol vet school in 2015 after originally completing an undergraduate degree in Zoology at the University of Sheffield. He now works at a first-opinion small animal practice in North London where he has developed an interest in small animal internal medicine, dentistry and diagnostic imaging. Sam co-founded StreetVet with Jade Statt in 2016 and now sits on the board of trustees. StreetVet is a volunteer-based charity that provides free, accessible vet care to those experiencing homelessness. Currently operating in 16 locations across the UK, StreetVet has helped over 1000 animals through the hard work and dedication of over 500 volunteer vets and vet nurses.
The Blaine Award sponsored by Royal Canin
This award is presented for outstanding contributions to the advancement of small animal science in its widest context by a qualified veterinarian. The award, kindly sponsored by Royal Canin, takes the form of BSAVA manuals and a cheque.
Professor Richard Mellanby
BSc BVMS PhD DSAM DipECVIM-CA FRCVS
Richard Mellanby graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1998. After two years in small animal practice, he completed a 3-year residency in small animal medicine at the University of Cambridge during which he was awarded the RCVS Certificate in Small Animal Medicine and the RCVS and ECVIM Diplomas in Small Animal Medicine. Richard was then awarded a Wellcome Trust Clinical Training Fellowship to undertake studies into T cell activation and regulation in diabetes for which he was awarded a PhD from the University of Cambridge. Richard moved to the University of Edinburgh in 2007 and worked as clinical fellow dividing his time between clinical work and research. He was awarded a second Wellcome Trust fellowship to continue his studies into T cell activation in 2008. He was appointed Head of Small Animal Medicine in 2011 and Head of Veterinary Clinical Research in 2012. In 2012, he was awarded a third Wellcome Trust Fellowship to explore how antigen presentation cells activate a pathogenic T cell response which was further extended in 2016. He was promoted to Head of Companion Animal Sciences in 2016 and was awarded a Personal Chair in Comparative Medicine in 2017. He is currently Deputy Head of School (Academic) at R(D)SVS. He has published over 150 papers and his research focuses on exploring the relationship between nutrition, inflammation and long term health outcomes. He was awarded the Petplan Scientific Achievement Award in 2016 and elected as a Fellow of Royal of College of Veterinary Surgeons for meritorious contributions to knowledge in 2016.
The Bourgelat Award
This award is presented by the BSAVA as the primary recognition for really outstanding international contributions to the field of small animal practice. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals and a cheque.
Professor Edward J. Hall
MA VetMB PhD DipECVIM-CA FRCVS
Ed Hall is Emeritus Professor of Small Animal Internal Medicine and has specialised in small animal gastroenterology. A Cambridge graduate, he trained in Philadelphia and Liverpool before moving to Bristol Veterinary School in 1995, although he remains a fan of Liverpool FC. He is a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, and an RCVS Recognised Specialist in Small Animal Medicine (Gastroenterology). He is a Past President of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association, and was a member of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association GI Standardization Group. He is Kennel Club Breed Health Coordinator for the Irish setter, having started his research career defining gluten-sensitive enteropathy in the breed. His research has focused on the canine GI tract, investigating areas such as mucosal immunity and intestinal permeability as they relate to the gut’s interaction with food and the microbiome. He still sees referral cases with GI disease, and his main clinical interests are chronic inflammatory enteropathies and videoendoscopy. He has published many research papers in the field of small animal gastroenterology, co-edited three editions of the BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Gastroenterology and written chapters in other Manuals and veterinary textbooks.
The PetSavers Award sponsored by Hill's Pet Nutrition
This award, kindly sponsored by Hill’s Pet Nutrition, is presented for contributions to clinical aspects of small animal practice in its widest context by a qualified veterinarian. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals and a cheque.
Dr Zoe Belshaw
MA VetMB PhD CertSAM DipECVIM-CA MRCVS
Zoe Belshaw graduated from Cambridge University in 2003 and became a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in 2011. She completed a BBSRC DTP PhD investigating decision making and welfare assessment in canine osteoarthritis at the Centre for Evidence-based Veterinary Medicine at the University of Nottingham in 2017. After a period of post-doctoral research, she now divides her time between clinical work at PDSA Nottingham, clinical research, and a range of veterinary consultancy work. Zoe has been an active veterinary committee member since 2000, holding positions in the International Veterinary Students’ Association executive committee, BVA Overseas Group, World Small Animal Veterinary Association Continuing Education committee and RCVS Ethical Review Panel. She has lectured at veterinary and animal welfare meetings in many countries on a broad range of topics. In 2017, she became the founding editor of “What is your client thinking?” a monthly column in the Veterinary Record authored by companion animal owners and farmers, which aims to increase the awareness of their perspectives on veterinary care. Her clinical research is widely published in peer-reviewed journals, and she has contributed to the recently published BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Shelter Medicine.
The Dunkin Award
This award is presented to the author of the most valuable published article on small animal medicine in the Journal of Small Animal Practice during the 12 months ending
30 September. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals and a cheque. This award is presented for Ben’s article "Relationship between brachycephalic airway syndrome and gastrointestinal signs in three breeds of dog".
Dr Benjamin M. Kaye
BVSc MVetMed MANZCVS MRCVS
Ben Kaye graduated from the University of Melbourne, Australia in 2009 before commencing equine internships at the University of Pennsylvania, New Bolton Center and Goulburn Valley Equine Hospital. After a few years in general practice, he then saw the light and under took further postgraduate training at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), London in 2013. He successfully completed his small animal surgery residency in 2018 at the RVC, and following this worked as a staff clinician in both the soft tissue and orthopaedic departments. He has very recently moved back to his antipodean life in Melbourne, with his wife, Caroline, and daughter, Victoria. He enjoys running with his Bedlington terrier X, Vegemite, playing water polo and competing in triathlons.
The Ray Butcher Award
This award is BSAVA’s ‘unsung hero’ award which recognises an individual who has made a significant contribution to animal welfare in the community. This award is in memory of Ray Butcher, President of the Association between 1993–1994, who sadly passed away in 2015. The award takes the form of a cheque and President’s artwork.
Diane Westwood started her career with the PDSA in 1985. She qualified as an Animal Treatment Centre Assistant in 1987 and Veterinary Nurse in 1989. After leaving the PDSA in the 1990s, she spent last 30 years working in private practice and welfare and gained a City and Guilds Certificate in Veterinary Nursing of Exotic Species. She moved to the Norfolk coast 5 years ago and, when not working for Vetfone, she is busy rescuing seals and other wildlife, fundraising for animal charities, clearing plastics and netting off her local beach and leading conservation volunteers at the County Wildlife Site.
The Bruce Vivash Jones Veterinary Nursing Award
This award is presented annually by the BSAVA as the primary recognition for outstanding contributions to the advancement of small animal veterinary nursing. The award takes the form of BSAVA manuals, a medal and a cheque.
Matthew qualified in 1992 and has nearly 30 years’ experience in nursing exotic species both in the UK and abroad. He is interested in all aspects of animal health and welfare, but especially in exotics species in captivity and the wild. Matthew helped establish the Association of Zoo and Exotic Veterinary Nurses (AZEVN) in 2016. The AZEVN is unique in the UK, being solely run by and dedicated to veterinary nurses interested in nursing exotic animals. Matthew has been assisting Wildlife Vets International (WVI) with their conservation projects around the world. Matthew has published and lectured on most aspects of delivering veterinary nursing care to exotics species from turtles to tigers. Matthew is currently Nursing Manager and Lead Exotics Nurse for Holly House Veterinary Hospital in Leeds, a multidisciplinary referral centre; he looks after a team of 30 RVNs, SVNs and VCAs. Matthew maintains a healthy balance of managerial duties and clinical work within the hospital and is a clinical coach and mentor.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: PRACTITIONER AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Abstract presented by a practitioner at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
Dr Michelle Lord
Michelle Lord has spent four years working on Dogs Trust's longitudinal cohort study ‘Generation Pup’ (www.generationpup.ac.uk). This groundbreaking study investigates risk factors for a multitude of health and behaviour issues affecting the wellbeing of our dogs. Michelle is also a Certificated Clinical Animal Behaviourist with ASAB (The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour) and sees dog behaviour cases through vet referral in the Bristol area. Michelle’s work with owners of dogs experiencing behaviour issues is complimented by her involvement in innovative research and vice versa.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: MEDICINE AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Abstract by a medicine resident at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
BVSc MSc MRCVS
Hannah Doit qualified as a vet from the University of Liverpool in 2010, with an intercalated MSc in Veterinary Infection and Disease Control (2008). She worked in veterinary practice for four years before moving to work at the Centre for Evidence-based Veterinary Medicine at Nottingham University. She was a Research Assistant in practice-based research for one year, and she is now studying for a PhD in the methods and feasibility of small animal pragmatic clinical trials.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: SURGERY AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Abstract by a surgery resident at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
BVMS PGCertSAS MRCVS
Joanna McCagherty graduated from the University of Glasgow in 2011 before working in a small animal charity hospital for 15 months. Joanna then completed a small animal rotating internship at Davies Veterinary Specialists before returning to first opinion practice where she was awarded a postgraduate Certificate in Small Animal Surgery. Joanna then undertook a surgical residency at the University of Edinburgh and was subsequently appointed as a clinician in soft tissue surgery at the University of Glasgow. She enjoys all aspects of small animal surgery with particular interests in minimally invasive surgery, wound management and upper airway surgery. Joanna has many active research interests including surgical site infection and brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: POSTER AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Abstract poster presented at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
Elinor Tedds is a fifth-year vet student at the University of Surrey. She is particularly interested in working with small animals and enjoy nutrition and surgery. Elinor hopes to work near home in Wiltshire after graduation; and is considering charity practice but would like to keep open minded until she has completed some of my rotations. Elinor’s poster is a summary of a research project completed in her third year.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: STUDENT AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Abstract by a student at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
Laura Holloway is a final-year student at the University of Bristol. Following her intercalation in Pathology and Microbiology at Bristol, Laura wanted to undertake research with a more veterinary-based angle and so did an 8 week project, funded by the UoB Research Strategy Fund, into 'Patterns of antimicrobial resistance in canine wound infections from two large scale electronic datasets', and thoroughly enjoyed it. In her spare time, Laura has been an active part of the Bristol Paws Project, a vet student led project helping the homeless and their pets, as well as ballroom dancing and walks with her two dogs.
CLINICAL ABSTRACT AWARDS: VETERINARY NURSE AWARD
This award is presented by the BSAVA for the best Clinical Governance Abstract presented at BSAVA Congress and takes the form of a cheque for continuing education.
Rachel McCormack qualified in 2008 from a small animal general practice in North London. She moved to the Queen Mother Hospital, Royal Veterinary College (RVC) in 2009 and developed a passion for medicine, oncology and clinical teaching. Rachel achieved the RVC graduate diploma in veterinary nursing in 2013, before taking a two-year break, to travel and gain work-experience in Australia. Rachel returned to the RVC in 2016 and is senior oncology nurse. Rachel will start her postgraduate diploma in veterinary education in September of this year.