SPCA New Zealand

Faces of SPCA Rescue: meet Vet Nathan

05 April 2023

When sick, injured and neglected animals come into our care at SPCA, our vet teams work hard to give them the best possible chance of recovery and rehabilitation. Vets like Nathan, who appears in TVNZ 1's SPCA Rescue, provide expert care to give the most vulnerable animals a second chance.

Faces of SPCA Rescue: meet Vet Nathan

Our new TV series SPCA Rescue on TVNZ 1 gives an insight into the work that goes on behind the scenes at SPCA, and the people who make it all possible. Inspectors, field officers, vets, animal attendants and volunteers are just some of the team members who contribute to improving the lives of vulnerable, neglected and abandoned animals around Aotearoa.

Nathan is one of our amazing veterinarians, having worked for SPCA since November 2020. You can see Nathan working in action across multiple episodes of the TVNZ 1’s SPCA Rescue, based out of our Māngere Centre.

When asked why he started working for SPCA, Nathan says that he’s always admired the work SPCA do for the animal community, and was keen to get involved.

“Working as a vet here really allows me to be an advocate for all the unowned animals without a voice. Being in shelter medicine is really rewarding, and I also get to focus on the parts I find really enjoyable - like surgery - all day long.”

Nathan tells us that the best part of the job is seeing stray, scared, or injured kittens and puppies come in to the Centres, and being able to provide that rehabilitation so that they can be rehomed.

“Sometimes they’re really scared of human contact when we first get them – so seeing them slowly become cuddly, smoochy pets is really rewarding,” he says.

“A really memorable example was a kitten called Audrey who was featured on our Facebook page. She came in as a tiny kitten, with severe burns to her legs and face. We had to bandage her wounds every couple of days for weeks, and she was the bravest little trooper for us. So seeing her grow up from a tiny scared kitten to a fluffy happy adult was so great to see.”

This cat had severe burns, but recovered after receiving treatment from SPCA.
This cat had severe burns, but recovered after receiving treatment from SPCA.
Audrey made an amazing recovery thanks to the care from Nathan and the team at the Māngere Centre.

But with those experiences come the challenges.

“It isn’t an easy job by any stretch, and we make the best of our limited space and resources. While we wish we could take every single animal, we simply don’t have the capacity,” Nathan adds.

“The other challenging part of the job - not taking all the animals home! I already have one ‘foster fail’, so my family have banned me from taking any more.”

Thank you Nathan, for all your hard work and for providing so much love and care for the animals who need it most!

SPCA vet Nathan helps a sick kitten
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