As you may have noticed I've just recently finished publishing write ups on all of our nursing staff, now it was always my intention but I had some gentle prodding from a well loved client that perhaps a write up or two on our sensational vets would be appreciated! So Ruth... here it is!
I've decided to kick off our vet profiles with a Dr. Dianne Pakes, our newest recruit.
Diane lived the first 25 years of her life in a small weatherboard house in East Bentleigh, attending Coatesville Primary before Kilvingon. She used to ride her bike around the local streets and later delivered pamphlets and worked as a Veterinary Nurse in North Road to pay for her Veterinary text books.
Di lived and breathed animals from a young age with her family breeding, showing and training Welsh Corgis for 15 years. Consequently from age 10, Di was committed to becoming a Veterinarian.
It was 1981 when Di graduated from the University of Melbourne with her Veterinary degree. She began her lifelong career in small animal practice at Brandon Park, one of the first multi-vet animal hospitals in Australia.
Dianne spent five years developing her skills and undertaking further study in canine medicine before deciding to go out on her own! A small clinic in Melton was purchased and Di began to work tirelessly; pouring her heart and soul into the place turning it into a modern, four vet practice to be proud of. Not only did she manage to turn this small clinic into a busy animal hospital, she managed to do it whilst raising her daughter!
Dianne decided that it was time for a change as her daughter entered year 12, so with that, she sold her practice and began the next phase of her career working as a full time vet in the bayside suburbs of Elwood and Albert Park. Di speaks fondly of the lovely long term relationships she was able to create with some of her clients and patients during this time.
Toward the end of 2016 Di decided to seek out a new place of employment and found a vacancy with us! Di states that she felt as though she had 'come home' as there are so many similarities both physical and operational between the new, modernised Oakleigh Central Vet and the clinic she owned in Melton.
As a Veterinarian, Dianne is passionate about ensuring the patients under her care continue to have optimal quality of life from birth right through to their most senior years. She aims to ensure their owners have the information needed to detect the changes in their pets health that may require veterinary assistance and to assist them to make appropriate treatment choices. Di feels the caring and close knit team at the Oakleigh Central Vet provide the essential support needed to achieve this goal.
Di continues to enjoy completing continuing education courses in canine and feline medicine, especially cardiology, pathology and diagnostic imaging. Her special interest lies in geriatrics, endocrinology, palliative care and analgesia.
On a more personal note, Di and her husband Ian have moved house six times in their 34 years of marriage, including a long stint at the beautiful Mt Macedon. Over the years they have enjoyed the company of Katie, a long haired German Shepherd, Birman Cats, English Springer Spaniels, a grumpy Lhasa Apso, rabbits, guinea pigs and two mini Schnauzers!
Dianne and Ian's daughter completed her schooling in Armadale before studying medicine at Melbourne Uni. This factor together with their parents still living in the Eastern Suburbs, influenced their move back to Stonnington. They are now empty nesters and in Di's own words 'under the control of a very loved (and spoilt) Mini. Schnauzer named Abbie.
When Di and Ian are not working or following Abbie's demands they are planning their next holiday! They share a love of food, wine, skiing, bike riding and even spend much time in the garden. They have travelled extensively in the last decade from weekends at Blairgowrie to adventures through Europe and America.
The future holiday bucket list for Di and Ian has led to them downsizing, delaying retirement plans and returning to Melbourne bike tracks and day trips... for now.
Di continues to spend hours planning the next holiday, which I'm certain is a hobby in itself! The next adventure may be skiing in Canada or Japan with friends, chasing the Northern Lights in Northern Canada or Norway or admiring the penguins in Antarctica. Which ever adventure or combination of adventures it may be, you can be assured it will be well planned, action packed and finished off with a nice meal and a glass of red.