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Full Time Vet Job Southland Region NZ - 210,353SB2

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LOCATION: Southland Region, New Zealand

TYPE OF WORK: 60% Dairy, 25% Small Animal and 15% Sheep, Beef and Equine

HOURS: Full Time


SALARY: High Salary + Generous relocation package

JOB NO: 210,353SB2

This independent practice is located in a stunning part of Southland, New Zealand.

Ideally, the employer is seeking a full-time mixed practice vet, but they truly believe that the person is more important than the job description. The practice is well set-up to accommodate part-time vets and a variety of interests.

The practice recognises that experienced vets sometimes need a bit of help and are never shy to send out an extra pair of hands, even if it is just for moral support.

The team consists of 4 full-time vets and 5 part-time vets, with a fabulous support team of qualified vet nurses and rural animal technicians, sympathetic receptionists who look after the team (and try their best to protect everyone’s lunch breaks), a practice manager/agony aunt, a cleaner who keeps the work environment nice & tidy, and Mavis the therapet.

The mix of work is 60% dairy, 25% companion and 15% sheep, beef and equine. There is scope to build up the equine side of the practice if desired. The new power float has proved to be really popular in the area. An excellent equine practice is nearby, willing to offer advice on the phone and take on referrals.

Most of the dairy clients calve in the Spring. However, there are a handful of split calving herds. The team do all the usual routine work, using their very capable technicians. They have vets with further training in reproduction, lameness, mastitis management and nutrition.

Herd health advisory work is becoming a significant part of the workload, so they need more vets to help them grow in this area. The practice uses Infovet to help with this side of the work, and one of the receptionists is an Excel whiz.

The practice also also sees a significant amount of cattle surgery to break up the routine and advisory work. The farmers are generally a very nice bunch who appreciate their services and value their input.

The small animal work is a mix of routine procedures, consultations and surgery, including orthopaedics. They are a long way from referral services so the team does a huge amount in-house. This can seem daunting, but there is a wealth of experience in the clinic, and the team make full use of distance referral services to maintain a really high-quality but affordable service to their companion animals and working dogs.

The practice also provides extra-mural teaching to both veterinary and nursing students, with veterinary students often making the long trip from overseas to gain experience with the larger-scale farming practices within NZ.

The clinic has a shared after-hours roster aiming for 1:6 or better, with 2 on-call over the spring calving period. A nurse is on call at the weekends too. On-call is very well renumerated, and outside, the Spring is generally very quiet. Opening hours are 8:30 to 5:30 Monday – Friday only.

The clinic is located in a small town with a big heart and excellent services for its size, surrounded by stunning and easily accessible countryside for those that enjoy outdoor activities.

20/7/22 Feedback from a 2019 graduate:

When I moved from the USA to a tiny town in Southland, NZ, I never guessed I’d still be here 3 years later. The team, the clients and the community were so welcoming, and it quickly felt like home. The clinic is primarily dairy-based, with a busy small animal clinic and a mixture of other things (sheep/beef/deer/equine). It’s very seasonal work, so we spend the spring months being very busy, but this comes back around in the summer when we slow down. This is perfect because there are lots of great outdoor activities in the surrounding areas – camping, hiking, surfing, etc. I love the fact that management is very open to new ideas and the experienced vets are eager to keep up with the latest research. They’ve encouraged me to grow as a vet and take on my own projects, investing in my CPD and new gear so I can keep practicing my new skills.

2/8/22 Feedback from a 2019 UK graduate:

This is a very supportive and friendly mixed practice in the beautiful deep South of New Zealand. The team is almost all-female with a range of ages and experience. You will have access to all the basic tools (Skyla in-house bloods, x-ray, small animal and large animal ultrasound) and see a true variety of caseloads both in largies and smallies. Our main large animal work is dairy, with some of the nicest farmers and clients. There is never a boring day! New Zealand is known for its amazing work-life balance, and it cannot be truer down here. Surfing is just 20 minutes away, and during the wintertime, skiing is only 2 hours away. The main city is also only about 30 minutes away. If you are a keen adventurer, the South Island has a lot to offer. There are great walks within 2-3 hours, lots of beautiful coastlines and landscapes.

2/9/22 Feedback from a 2020 Massey graduate:

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as a new graduate at the practice. The team is friendly and close-knitted, and there was always someone who could lend a hand or offer a second opinion when I first started. The on-call roster didn’t start until I felt fairly confident with small animal cases. I could always reach a director or a more senior vet on the phone when I am out on a farm call if it is something I haven’t seen before. The small animal caseload is interesting and challenging, and the truly mixed nature of the practice means no two days are the same. The farmers are generally friendly and receptive to having a new vet give it a go. It is also a beautiful corner of the country to live in, with a good work-life balance for anyone who enjoys the outdoors that New Zealand has so much to offer.

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For more information, please contact:

Libby Stidwell
Recruitment Consultant