Our aim is to provide the best possible service to you and your pets in a caring and friendly environment. We are a dedicated team of professionals, all of whom are committed to offering the highest standard of care.
We aim to provide ready access for you to discuss every aspect of your pets' treatment so that you can be as fully informed on all aspects of their treatment as possible. If we are able to maintain this commitment, we believe we will continue to provide true excellence in veterinary care.
The Genesis of Our Mission Statement
We are committed to treating our patients with superior professional skills, compassionate hearts, gentle hands and kindly words.
A number of people have enquired about the origin of our mission statement, which is displayed in the waiting room, so we thought we’d tell you how it came about. Several years ago we decided we needed a facelift. We organised new uniforms, designed our GVH logo and undertook the initial renovations of the front part of the practice. Everyone else in the world seemed to have a mission statement or a vision statement (actually, we weren’t quite sure what the difference was); so we thought it would be a good idea to formulate one of our own, to try to encapsulate what our overall philosophy is. This may sound like an easy task, but as it turned out that was far from the case. The hours that Elisabeth, Barry, Max and Pam spent discussing it stretched on and on until they seemed endless. Commitment and dedication seemed important things to include, because that’s what the GVH staff have. We insist on maintaining the highest professional standards in the treatments that we offer to our patients, and in promoting continuing education among all the staff, so that seemed important to include. We also felt the need to include our love of animals and passionate commitment to their welfare, because that’s really the underlying reason of why each of us has this vocation. So over several months (or was it years??!!) we ran through what seemed like endless possibilities, most of which included words like excellence, commitment, professional, superior, welfare, compassion- but none of the suggestions we each came up with sounded right, and eventually the idea died a natural death. It looked as though we would be “vision-statement-less” forever more, and for several months we didn’t discuss it at all. Then one day one of us happened to be reading a book by Jane Goodall, “Reason for Hope”. As most people know, Jane Goodall is the English scientist who did ground-breaking research on chimpanzee behaviour in Tanzania in the 1960’s, living with a group of the animals for several years. She was responsible for turning the scientific world on its head by necessitating a redefinition of the concept of what it is to be human: previously the premeditated use of tools in a problem-solving way had been used by anthropologists as the thing which set humans aside from the animal kingdom, but Jane observed her chimps doing just that, so many other scientists had their preconceptions about the superiority of our species destroyed. She has since set up a permanent research base dedicated to the study and welfare of the chimps, and is also active in the conservation of other animal species and the natural environment in general, as well as being vocal on issues of world peace. In her book, Jane relates an occasion when she was asked to address the congregation of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco on St Francis’ Day, the day when people are invited to bring in their animals to be blessed at the altar. During her address she quoted a prayer by Albert Schweitzer, the famous German doctor and humanitarian who worked with African people and also became an early advocate for animal rights. The text is below, and as you can see we unashamedly plagiarised it, because it immediately seemed right for what we were trying to convey. We hope you enjoy reading the full text.
For animals that are overworked, underfed, and cruelly treated; for all wistful creatures in captivity that beat their wings against bars; for any that are hunted or lost or deserted or frightened or hungry; for all that must be put to death… and for those who deal with them we ask a heart of compassion and gentle hands and kindly words.