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Stories of sadness and joy in new series of Vets on BBC ALBA

By David Porter

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The next series of a popular programme which follows vets across Scotland as they tend to small, large and very wild animals begins on Tuesday, September 29 on BBC Alba.

Vets: Gach Creutair Beò, which is created and produced by Aberdeen based Midas Media for BBC ALBA, has stories of joy and sadness as viewers meet all creatures great and small.

At Blair Drummond Safari Park in Stirling it’s vaccination day for the two nine-week-old lion cubs, and the keepers find out if the feisty cubs are male or female. The vet also checks on the birds of prey – including a vulture and a kite.

AVR's vet Scott Rigg performs difficult surgery,
AVR's vet Scott Rigg performs difficult surgery,

At Aberdeen Veterinary Referrals clinic vet Scott Rigg performs risky surgery on a pug, a French bulldog has emergency spinal surgery due to sudden paralysis and there’s a surgical procedure on a Labrador’s leg.

Peppa the Pug who features in the first episode
Peppa the Pug who features in the first episode

Vet Joanna Jackson in Stornoway is busy with the lambing season and faces some unexpected challenges.

Viewers are also introduced to Ella Hamilton, who was born on Harris and returns to work as a vet there.

While she’s there Ella falls in love with and buys an adorable lurcher cross Bedlington puppy from a litter of 11 that come into the surgery for their inoculations.

The series also follows vets Fiona Crowden and Kerry Voice in Forfar, where a cow in labour unwittingly puts her life at risk when she tries to sit down while the vet attempts to perform a caesarian.

Fiona gets an unexpected call out at night after a horse has ripped off his shoe and trodden on it, she uses a nebulizer for the first time on a horse that has breathing difficulties, and is under pressure to deliver a calf safely from a surrogate cow that’s been used to breed an Aberdeen Angus pedigree, worth tens of thousands of pounds.

Vet Jane Harley gives up after two attempts to dart a Lynx to insert a contraceptive implant at Highland Wildlife Park in the Cairngorms because the cats are so evasive and Jane doesn’t want them to be stressed and viewers meet Chan, a handsome snow leopard when his sperm count is checked.

He appears to be infertile but there’s a big surprise six months later when he fathers three cubs.

The snow leopard cubs are all checked for a common congenital eye problem called coloboma which causes vision problems.

They all have problems to a varying degree, but one of the four-month-old cubs is so severe that a heartbreaking decision to put him to sleep is made.

Viewers can also follow surgery on his sister’s eye to save her eyesight, and a cat that’s brought in is identified as a Scottish Wildcat and will now be part of their crucial breeding programme.

Vets at Glasgow Vet School in Bearsden perform cutting-edge operations including inserting four rods into the eye of a horse to treat a chronic ulcer. There’s also a very risky operation on a Bichon Frise called Becky to remove a cancerous tumour on her adrenal gland.

It’s touch and go when she loses half her blood volume during surgery and needs several blood transfusions to save her life.

Viewers also catch up with Ealasaid Dick in Uist and Benbecula from previous series as she brings new lambs into the world and looks after some poorly ewes and they will meet a mouse lemur, wallaby and alligators being tended to by Romain Pizzi at the Five Sisters Zoo in West Calder.

Series 7 of Vets: Gach Creutair Beò starts on Tuesday, September 29 and runs until Tuesday, November 17 at 8.30pm.

All eight episodes will also be on the BBC iPlayer for 30 days after it airs.

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