Proving that hard work, personal, friendly service and quality care are still much appreciated these days, the Gold Coast Vet Surgery was recently voted “Best Vet” in the inaugural Paws & Claws Awards for Charity. At an Oscars' style red-carpet gala dinner on Saturday 11 August ex-South Africans Drs Kevin and Fiona Cruickshank were extremely proud to receive this award n behalf of their practice. The awards were run by the Paws & Claws pet magazine with readers nominating vets and other unsung heroes in the pet industry. Readers and clients of the nominees were then invited to vote for the best of the best across 12 different categories.
“Coming out tops, ahead of 24 other nominated vet practices on the Gold Coast, was very unexpected” said Kevin. “We are only a small practice and didn't think we stood a chance against the larger corporate style practices on the coast.” But it may be that very fact that makes them so popular. Being smaller, at Gold Coast Vet Surgery clients really are able to receive personal attention, and they and their pets become part of the family. Even more remarkable though is that Fiona and Kevin had only been running Gold Coast Vet Surgery for 10 months when they won the award, turning around a declining practice into an up and coming centre of excellence. “Winning this award was the icing on the cake of an extraordinary year for us,” said Fiona and Kevin. “In 12 months we quit our jobs and moved 3000km interstate from Darwin, bought a business for the first time, bought a house and had our 2nd baby 2 weeks later!!”
South African trained vets are highly respected around the world and not surprisingly more and more are choosing to settle in Australia. Kevin believes that the friendly South African approach, backed by quality care is certainly appreciated by clients. “It's pleasing to be seeing many new clients coming to us on the recommendation of their friends. Several of our clients are ex-South Africans and they seem to appreciate seeing somebody they can trust and relate to,” says Kevin who, together with Fiona, is now also an Australian citizen. The Paws & Claws Best Vet award was presented by the Australian entertainment icon Barry Crocker.