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Wildlife Assistant - Catherine Smith

What do you enjoy most about your role?

Being so close to a variety of beautiful species and learning all about their behaviours (natural and captive), specific needs and release requirements. Some of my favourite species we care for are the grey and common seals, Eurasian otters and gannets.

I also love how I can be a voice for our animals. As we all know animals can't talk so being able to help them by being an advocate for their certain needs and requirements will enable them to hopefully have a quick and stress free rehabilitation journey.

What advice would you give to someone wishing to join us as a Wildlife Assistant at the RSPCA?

I would definitely recommend volunteering; it shows your passion and commitment to the role and gets your face known and foot in the door. I started off my wildlife career by volunteering at RSPCA Stapeley Grange before going on to a placement year, summer position and then a permanent full-time role.

You need to expect physically demanding/dirty/repetitive work. It's not cuddling cute animals every day!

I would also suggest being receptive to learning from others with knowledge and experience by asking lots of questions.

What does a typical day look like in a snapshot?

Cleaning, feeding, medicating of a variety of animals depending on the area I am working in that day. We have the Orphan Room, Isolation and Outside; all housing a variety of species all with different needs. Obviously a great part of the role is getting to release animals that we have worked so hard to care for, back to the wild where they belong!

Wildlife Assistant, Catherine Smith

Groom - Gemma Gurr

What do you enjoy most about your role?

I absolutely love working as a groom at RSPCA Felledge Equine Centre and one of my favourite parts of the job is seeing nervous, feral or very poorly equines (horses, ponies and donkeys) come into our care and being able to bring them around and nurse them. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing those horses eventually ready to start a new life in a forever home.

What advice would you give to someone wishing to join us as a groom at the RSPCA?

Go for it! If you have a passion for improving the lives of equines as well as experience dealing with a variety of horses and the knowledge required for the role, becoming a groom with the RSPCA is a fantastic opportunity.

Groom, Gemma Gurr

What does a typical day look like in a snapshot?

The typical day as an equine groom will begin with initial daily checks which include making sure all of the horses, fields, water troughs and fencing are as they should be.

We try to have as many horses living out 24/7 as possible but if there are some that may require further handling or sick nursing it is then time to ensure they have had all necessary medication, handling and all of the yard and stables are tidy.

For the remainder of the day, we work with the rest of our allocated horses, which could include training, grooming, picking feet, and rehabilitation.

We end the day similar to how we begin making sure all of the horses are settled, all of the yards are tidy and all daily treatments have been taken care of.


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