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Donkey Sanctuary says goodbye to ‘icon’ Poitou donkey
Dartanyan passed away in the sun surrounded by his groom team and bonded companion.
Dartanyan has passed away aged 14.

The Donkey Sanctuary has announced the death of long-term resident Dartanyan, after he developed a serious illness.

The Poitou donkey had experienced a history of ongoing health issues, before signs of more serious illness prompted veterinary surgeons to recommend that he was euthanised.

Dartanyan was first brought into the Sidmouth sanctuary in April 2011, alongside other Poitou donkeys Guinness, Aramis and Percy, after his owner was unable to provide the specialist care he needed.

He had experienced a long history of severe white line disease and laminitis, which required long term treatment. He also had cellulitis, which caused painful sores in his legs.

On 21 June, grooms saw that he had developed a cough and nasal discharge. Dartanyan had a high temperature and was distancing himself from his bonded companion, Jump the mule.

A veterinary team soon took radiographs, which revealed that Dartanyan was suffering from sinusitis, caused by a tooth rot infection.

Treatment would have required extensive surgery which, combined with his ongoing health issues, would have affected his quality of life.

Based on this diagnosis, The Donkey Sanctuary agreed that euthanising Dartanyan would be the kindest option. Dartanyan passed away in the sun on 25 June, surrounded by his groom team and Jump the mule.

Dartanyan will be remembered as an ‘icon’ at the sanctuary, known for his shaggy coat and tall stature. The sanctuary says that he loved people, and would often poke his head over the fence so that visitors could take a selfie with him.

He made great memories at the Sidmouth sanctuary, including becoming its ‘poster boy’ in many advertisement and TV campaigns over the years.

While staff grieve his death, they will also be providing Jump and other donkeys with the attention they need to come to terms with their loss.

Marianne Steele, chief executive officer at The Donkey Sanctuary, said: “It is hard to say goodbye to any donkey in our care, but our priority is always to act in the best interests of the animal concerned. Thanks to an incredible team of vet and grooms, Dartanyan was able to enjoy a long and happy life among his companions, just as he deserved.
“The legacy he leaves is a deep understanding of this rare and extraordinary breed of donkey, knowledge that will inform our work and help us improve the lives of many more Poitous, just like Dartanyan, in the future.”

Image © The Donkey Sanctuary

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Special imports digital service set to change

News Story 1
 From Monday, 15 July, Special Import Certificate (SIC) applications will only be accepted via the Veterinary Medicines Directorate's (VMD's) new special imports digital service.

The original online special import scheme will be decommissioned. The VMD says that the new service is easier to use, more secure and reliable, and meets accessibility legislation.

The VMD is urging veterinary surgeons who have not yet signed up for the new service to do so before 15 July. The new digital service can be accessed here

Click here for more...
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RCVS course explains concerns process

A free, online course from the RCVS Academy has been launched, designed to clarify RCVS' concerns procedure.

The content will give veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses a better understanding of the process, and what they can expect if a concern is raised about them. It includes details of common concerns.

The interactive resource has been developed in collaboration with Clare Stringfellow, case manager in the RCVS Professional Conduct Team.

Ms Stringfellow said: "We appreciate that concerns can be very worrying, and we hope that, through this course, we can give vets and nurses a better understanding of the process and how to obtain additional support."

The course can be accessed via the RCVS Academy. Users are encouraged to record their learning for CPD.