A Bournemouth vet has been struck off the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons’ Register following her conviction for animal cruelty on 30 April 2015. Kerstin Vockert, 56, was found guilty of cruelty after the RSPCA found that both of her dogs – a Shih Tzu named Happy and Cocker Spaniel Millie – had severely matted fur with mud and faeces stuck in it.

Vockert, who’s been a vet for almost 20 years, put Millie to sleep following the visit from the RSPCA. Happy was rescued, but required extensive grooming and treatment, as one eye was so badly damaged it had to be removed.

RSPCA Inspector Patrick Bailey said, “Happy’s quality of life had been significantly impacted as his fur had got so matted that he could hardly move. He would also have suffered a great deal of pain from his prolapsed eye, which wasn’t even visible when he was first rescued because it was buried under his matted coat.

“There is no excuse for anyone to allow their pet to get into such a state, or to suffer as he has. Although Happy lost his sight completely, he has now gone on to a better life with a family who love him and care for him properly.”

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While she only faced a total fine of less than £1,000 and a ban from keeping animals as a result of the conviction, Vockert has now received further punishment as the Disciplinary Committee of the RCVS has decided to remove her from the Register.

Ian Green, chairing the Committee, said, “The College submitted that the conviction of a veterinary surgeon for an animal welfare offence, of necessity has the potential to undermine both the reputation of the profession and public confidence in the profession.

“In such circumstances, the respondent’s conviction fell far below the standard to be expected of a veterinary surgeon and therefore renders her unfit to practise veterinary surgery.”

Images by RSPCA.

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