Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: The Secret Life of a Vet by Sion Rowlands

Published 15 February 2024

Paperback | Two Roads | £8.99

Rare behind-the-scenes glimpse into the uniquely pressurised and varied world of veterinary practice

Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: The Secret Life of a Vet is frank, funny and moving in equal measures revealing the highs and lows of the life of a vet.

Trimming a parrot’s beak, emptying a dog’s anal glands and neutering a cat – then lunch – followed by some tricky horse dentistry, amputating a lamb’s leg and calming a distressed client…

It’s all in a day’s work if you’re a vet: a delicate balance of managing animal welfare and ethics, educating people in pet ownership and aligning their expectations with real-life outcomes. As a job, it spans everything from managing the heartbreak of euthanasia, to informing owners that under no circumstances should they take their dog’s worming pills, even if they’re sure they have worms.

During his twenty-five-year career, Welsh vet Siôn Rowlands has experienced almost every animal medical issue imaginable, from rescuing an injured horse from the edge of a cliff to moisturizing a baby elephant. He’s also witnessed ridiculous moments, surreal situations and the real toll it can take on a person.

In the author’s words:

“In my book, I want to show the positive impact pets and animals have on individuals, families and our world and reflect on the crippling grief their loss can have. I will also share my experiences with candid accounts of the most memorable moments a vet can face. This book will be a sneak peek behind the curtains and professional veneer of vets. Readers will hopefully come to learn about this fascinating side of medicine and come to appreciate the daily human demands to this rewarding industry and its far-reaching impact. Being a vet may have the potential of being just another job, but it so often isn’t”

About Siôn Rowlands

Siôn Rowlands studied Veterinary Science at Liverpool University, graduating in 1997. His career has been varied with roles both in the UK and Australia. He has worked with small and large animals in private practice and has extensive experience working as a government vet, with responsibilities including the delivery of animal health and welfare work across the UK. Siôn is passionate about highlighting the importance of veterinary surgeons and ensuring their voice adds value to the relevant and important conversations of today. He is also committed to supporting the next generation of vets so they can continue their work and fulfil their goals of protecting and safeguarding all animals. Father of two young boys who both have a healthy love of animals and concern for their welfare.