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Mental health
Take care of yourself
  1. Johanna Sharples
  1. Stewkley, Buckinghamshire
  1. email: josharples{at}

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The RCVS asks that as veterinary surgeons we make the following declaration on entering the profession: ‘I promise and solemnly declare that I will pursue the work of my profession with integrity and accept my responsibilities to the public, my clients, the profession and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, and that, above all, my constant endeavour will be to ensure the health and welfare of animals committed to my care.’1

But what happens when by constantly endeavouring to ensure the health and welfare of animals you inadvertently fail to care for your own health and welfare?

I knew there was something terribly wrong when I got into my car to drive to work one Monday and physically was unable to do so. Instead, I drove myself to my GP and asked for help.

Before this I had been on a week’s holiday to Barcelona with my partner, a holiday I’d been excited about. However, the holiday for me was eclipsed with anxiety, apprehension and panic attacks. I …

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