One Sunday morning, between packing for a feline veterinary congress, admin duties for our online store and juggling kids, dogs, cats and horses, Paul was at the clinic to film some new ‘how-to’ guides for our YouTube channel.
While there we recorded a short Q & A session, a great way of introducing ourselves to our recent new followers and sharing our past, present and future plans.
“Hi guys, my name is Paul Proctor and I am one of two veterinary surgeons that started Petstoreo. I have been asked, much against my better judgment, (chuckling), to do a quick Q&A session”
First of all, what made you want to become a vet?
I have always loved animals. When I was little I used to cry when all the animals were damaged in the movies and was relatively unperturbed when any of the people got damaged. I suppose that was a very early indication.
In fact, in my very early days, I was going to be a marine biologist like Jacques Cousteau back in the day, but then I spent a lot of time on farms. I switched to wanting to be a vet, and in fact the Herriot books were doing the rounds at that stage. That was unfortunate because it made the profession incredibly hard to get into then. There was a lot of publicity and material around being a vet at this period.
For those of you who don’t know, James Alf Wight, under the pseudonym James Herriot wrote about his experiences as a young Yorkshire based veterinary surgeon. The books were hugely popular, as was the original 80’s tv adaptation ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ and more recently the popular remake.
Where did the idea for your SimplyCats, cat-only clinic come from?
One of the things we decided through the years is that the one animal that seemed to get a really bad deal was cats. Hence, along with my partner Dr Sarah Middleton we started SimplyCats which is an ISFM gold standard cat-only clinic. I work in the clinic on ocasions, and I still do the horse work and small animal locum. That was the genesis and dream idea of our cat-only clinic. You can watch Sarah’s story here.
What inspired you to start up Petstoreo?
Petstoreo was started as a method of putting some of my 30-plus years of veterinary experience into a small range of products. Products that we would use every day, that we liked and that we knew were really good. These are quite hard to find on the market. Most brands are not veterinary-driven. It was our dream to change that.
Which product was your first? Can you tell us a little about the design process?
The first product we produced was our dog nail clippers. Clipping nails is something we as vets do every day and we did not feel there were enough high-quality clippers on the market. It took us well over 8 months to source high quality materials, we were not happy with the quality of our first design and tweaked our process until we were happy.
One point I will mention about our nail clippers, for the average pet owner you will only ever need one set of nail clippers for your pet’s lifetime. They are extremely high quality and they will last you a lot of years.
Petstoreo loves pet stories, so what is your favourite pet story?
My favourite pet story…I suppose it’s a dog one. One day we were walking along the river with our little whippet, many moons ago. We were alongside the bank and for some bizarre reason, as dogs normally do, he decided to leap off the bank. He went 10 feet down into the river confused that the river was not some sort of a path! So that is the weirdest and wackiest one I can remember off the top of my head, but there are many more!
You’ll be relieved to know the little dog was fine after his unexpected bath!
Pet and veterinary care are progressing. What are your plans for the future?
Our plans for the future…two things quite simply.
One is to promote WETS massively. We would love everybody with a pet to weigh, examine, and look at their teeth once a month. That will be massive!
The other one is to get everybody, especially dog owners to clean their pet’s teeth at least weekly. We would love you to do it daily, but brush your pet’s teeth! 95% of dogs will tolerate it once introduced carefully and it is so useful. We still see far too many dogs with really bad teeth and smelly breath.
If you had one piece of advice for pet owners, what would it be?
My one piece of advice for pet owners would be to do WETS once a month. Look at your pets a little bit closely, weigh, examine and ideally check their teeth!
Click the link to read our short article explaining how to start your WETS home care routine.
We hope you have enjoyed getting to know Paul and this brief insight into our ethos of doing the very best we can for our pets. You can watch the video recording on Petstoreo’s YouTube channel.
Why not join our club via our homepage to keep updated with the latest blogs, products and news from Paul and Sarah? 2 vets:1 mission happy, healthy pets.