HerpVet Services

(Bird & Exotic Animal Veterinary Service)


Bruce Maclean BSc, BVM&S, MRCVS



c/o Iffley Vets
35 Iffley Road
OX4 1EA, U.K.

Tel: 07754 125302



E-mail: mailto:beavs@herpvet.co.uk


 Please scroll down for full information, or see Current news/service status , Practice policies , opening hours , emergencies , routine health checks and reduced rate , Fees , Location/directions

Please note you can email me to receive email updates on the service (email updates will only include HerpVet Services updates, which will include notifications if I am away or running any special hours, updates to the website or information pages, any special offers etc). Email addresses submitted will be kept with practice records but never voluntarily released to any other organisation, and will be removed from the list at any time by request.

I also now have a Twitter account (@Herpvet), facebook page and LinkedIn Page where I will post news and service updates as well as exotic animal info and links to interesting articles - please feel free to visit them, like/follow and/or leave any comments (on any of the sites).

General Information

This veterinary practice is run solely for birds & exotic animals (see note below). I work full-time with these species and do not routinely see any others. If you are looking for a dog or cat vet, my host practice Iffley vet (www.iffleyvets.com) deals with these animals.

My practice has its own dedicated hospitalisation facilities, allowing most animals to be hospitalised in suitable housing which can be individually adjusted to the conditions required by your pet.

I also have access to a wide range of diagnostic and surgical equipment required for these species and a very extensive library on veterinary care of birds and exotic animals, along with subscriptions to approriate journals and specialist email lists and forums.

I can provide a veterinary service for any bird/exotic animal collection, large or small. This can be on whatever basis is appropriate, including the following:

I run a reduced rate scheme for regular clients, with reduced price consults and out of hours fees - see below.

Note on species treated

Normally I deal with birds (mainly psittacines - parrots, macaws, budgies, cockatiels, also chickens, waterfowl, finches), reptiles (if you have a tortoise, terrapin, turtle, snake, lizard, crocodile, alligator or caiman), amphibians (if you have a frog, toad, newt, salamander or caecilian), fish (mainly koi & goldfish, but also any freshwater or marine species - I have a particular interest in seahorses, keeping several species myself) and invertebrates (if you have a tarantula, scorpion, snail, millipede, mantis or other pet species).  

I do not routinely treat common small mammal pets such as rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas, rats and mice, and claim no special experience with them. However, I do have an interest in exotic/wild species of all sorts, so if you have a particularly exotic mammal (e.g. pygmy hedgehogs, ferrets or others) I am happy to see them.

I have a special interest in amphibian and invertebrate medicine, and offer reduced rate consultations for them as well as for seahorses and other small tropical fish! I also run a reduced rate scheme for regular clients, with money off consultations and my out of hours fees.

I will see injured wild animals if necessary, especially reptiles and amphibians (or even invertebrates or fish!). Injured wild animals brought in to the surgery during my normal hours will normally be dealt with at no charge, though donations to help with costs are welcome! As usual this will have to be by pre-arrangement (see below), although with wildlife it may be possible to arrange for it to be handed in at the front desk. Note that uninjured wildlife should almost always be left alone (and in the case of some species, legally must be left undisturbed).

Current news/service status

Please note you can email me to receive email updates on the service (email updates will only include HerpVet Services updates, which will include notifications if I am away or running any special hours, updates to the website or information pages, any special offers etc). Email addresses submitted will be kept with practice records but never voluntarily released to any other organisation, and will be removed from the list at any time by request.

I also now have a Twitter account (@Herpvet), facebook page and LinkedIn Page where I will post news and service updates as well as exotic animal info and links to interesting articles - please feel free to visit them, like/follow and/or leave any comments (on any of the sites).

Normal service is in operation.

I am hoping to to be able to offer consultations in the Twickenham area of London soon - please email me if you would be interested in this and I will keep you updated.



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Practice Policies

Please see below (scroll down) for notes on opening hours, consultations, the initial consultation, emergencies and fees. First I should say though:

Please appreciate that I run this service single-handed, to provide a personal and consistent level of care, and you will normally always see me.
This means that I can be very busy
and I am on duty 24 hours a day (and pending successful cloning research, I can only be in one place at one time!). Please have some consideration for this.



Please note that, although based on their premises, my practice is a separate entity from the Iffley vets. Other than possibly by special arrangement, they will not do anything for Herpvet clients. They do not have access to the HerpVet hospital or in-patients and cannot report on or release in-patients on my behalf. Please do not therefore use Iffley contact details to try to contact me - the staff are instructed to simply refer you to my numbers. Rudeness to Iffley staff will not be tolerated under any circumstances - any problem you may have with my business or policies is nothing to do with them, and I rely on their goodwill for help.

As I am not in the surgery all the time  (even necessarly in normal consulting hours, depending on my specific schedule), please be aware that this means that  ALL consultations and collections of in-patients, drugs and equipment are strictly by arrangement only.

Opening hours

There is veterinary cover, normally provided personally by me, 24 hours a day. You can phone my phone number any time, and if I am not immediately available it should - technology willing - give you up to date information on current status (normal or emergencies-only service, whether you can leave a message, and the appropriate alternative number).

Normal hours of my availability (for telephone calls) are as below (please note that these apply to telephone enquiries only) - I do NOT guarantee to be on the premises, and may well not be, without prior arrangment. If you haven't arranged an appointment, or collection of drugs etc, they will not be possible. Consultation hours are discussed seperately.

I am normally available all year; however, there may be the occasional day exception, and please see current status above for notes regading any conferences I may be attending which may make me uncontactable.

During normal hours, if I am busy, you will get the answerphone. Please listen to the message as it may contain more up to date information, but generally please leave your name, contact number, and a brief description of the problem/query, and I will get back to you as soon as possible, normally within 4 (working) hours. If your call needs to be dealt with more urgently than this, please use the emergency number (see below - although bear in mind I may be operating, consulting or driving). If you do leave a message, please also try again if you have not heard back, certainly within 4 (working) hours - it does happen that numbers left on the answerphone are unclear, or there is some other problem with the answerphone. 

I will always try to ensure that the emergency line can be answered, but if you do get problems with reception or no immediate answer (I may be operating, or travelling and temporarily out of range) please allow it to ring for a long time, and try again in a few minutes if there is no immediate response. 

Outside these times I may be available, but normally emergencies-only service will be operating - the answerphone message will inform you of this, when I am next available for non-emergency enquiries, arrangement of appointments etc, and an emergency number for use if your call is a veterinary emergency. I am currently providing my own out of hours cover - you will always see me.

Outside normal hours, please note that messages will not be received until (at least) next opening hours (i.e. when I next switch the main line phone on) - if your call is an emergency, please call the emergency number provided.

For non-urgent communication, the use of email is encouraged - I will normally check emails once or twice a day (weekdays) and reply within a few days, although this is not guaranteed. Emails may also go astray and internet services can go down (the wonders of technology!) and so on, so telephone communication is strongly recommended for urgent matters. See notes below regarding Arranging appointments by email.

Note on text messaging: I will normally receive texts during normal hours but this is not guaranteed and does not provide any feedback as to whether I am available, so texts should not be used for urgent contact. If texting, please include a phone number, as I will normally telephone you back. It is also advisable to follow  up texts with a phone call if you have not heard back from me within a few hours.

Consulting hours and conusultations

Again, please note that ALL consultations and collections of in-patients, drugs and equipment are strictly by appointment/arrangement only. I am not usually available outside consulting hours (or even necessarily during specific times - the consultation hours below are NOT a guarantee I will be at the surgery). Turning up without an appointment will be a wasted trip. 

Consultations and collections therefore need to be arranged on the phone - see  above. Please note that, while it does vary and I will try to be flexible, my schedule may be full for up to several days in advance. Therefore same day appointments, or occasionally even next or succeeding day ones, may involve an overbooking fee if I have to add you onto an already fully-booked surgery. The same fee may apply if you can only make times which are already fully booked.

Please note also that I need to know if you are bringing in more than one animal for a consultation - this is not a problem, but it's not fair on other clients to keep them waiting while I have to examine several unannounced animals of yours because you're only scheduled for a single appointment!  I do offer a reduction (see below) on consult fees for subsequent animals seen at the same time, BUT ONLY IF YOU HAVE BOOKED THEM IN!

Running late: If you are going to be late for an appointment (certainly more than 10 minutes late) please telephone to let me know (on the emergency number if necessary). I certainly understand there may sometimes be traffic or other problems, and I will usually be able to see you, although you may need to wait longer. However, sometimes I may have other urgent commitments, and please note that if you are more than 15 minutes late without warning, there may be a long delay and/or a surcharge for your consultation.

Missing appointments: Obviously, I would be grateful if you could let me know as soon as possible if you cannot make your appointment - I may be waiting around specifically for you!

Arranging appointments by email: This is possible, but due to the delays inherent in the communication, email appointments can only be made if you specify (preferably several alternative) surgery hours (see below) you can make so that I can email back a specific time slot for confirmation, and/or include a phone number so that I can call you back to arrange an appointment. While appreciating the ease of email, it is not practical for me to keep several slots blanked off for appointments pending replies that might or might not confirm, especially in the near future. Therefore no email appointments are possible for at least 4 days (or possibly longer, depending on how busy I am) from the day of the email. Computer or other problems may also result in delays in replying to emails etc. Note also that confirmation from me of a specific time slot is required - please note your appointment (if arranged by email) is NOT booked until I have received an email from you confirming a specific time slot I have offered, and I have re-confirmed that by email to you - if in doubt, please telephone. 

If you do wish to arrange anything by email, please check the current news/service status above - I may not have access to email.

Current normal consulting hours are as below - outside these times may be possible by special arrangement although usually with a surcharge:


No routine surgeries on Sundays or bank holidays.

Home Visits - I can do home visits, which may be useful both for fully assessing the housing and husbandry of the animal, and will also avoid  the stress of a car journey to your pet. However, you do need to be aware that these will be more expensive than a consultation at the surgery - please bear in mind that I have to cover not only for the car fuel/depreciation costs, but also for my travelling time to and from the visit. Visits are also likely to need to be arranged further in advance than consultations at the surgery, as they are obviously more time-consuming than consults at the surgery. 

Emergency case visits are rarely advisable as there is a limit to the equipment I can carry on a visit and much better facilities will be available at the surgery, but please telephone to discuss if necessary.


The initial consultation

If coming to see me for the first time with your pet, please note the following:

- I will want to discuss the husbandry of your pet with you as part of an overall assessment of him/her. Some of the information I will ask about, and which you should therefore have to hand, includes:

   The animal
  The enclosure (vivarium/tank/etc)


 - I believe that it is important to try to minimise the stress for your pet associated with a visit to the vets, where he/she might be prodded, poked and have needles stuck into them! This is particularly important for pet parrots and related (psittacines). For this reason, with new birds I will normally recommend that you bring the bird in either for a single registration consultation (take history/discuss husbandry but no physical examination of the bird, at a reduced price) or for a full but split consultation (single normal consultation fee) - at the first visit I will take your details and discuss the husbandry, diet etc, but try to avoid to do anything to the bird that it might perceive as stressful. This will mean that I don't do a full physical examination of the bird, so that will be carried out at the second consultation a few days later. Note that this is obviously not possible if the bird is ill on presentation, which is why I would strongly encourage you to register and bring your bird along, before any problem arises. An ill bird doesn't need the extra stress of a visit to a scary, unfamiliar place! This is optional if you have difficulty getting to the surgery, but from your bird's point of view I feel it is much better. This is of course an option for any pet if you wish.

It is also worth noting that the registration consultation automatically puts you on the reduced rate (gold client) scheme initially!

I would also encourage you to keep a food item (one readily available all year round) which is used only as a special treat for stressful situations such as a visit to the vet, and bring some along to the consultation.

- I will normally want to examine a faeces sample from your animal as part of the overall health assessment, so please bring one along if possible. The sample should generally be as fresh as possible (if kept moist, a fews days is generally okay), and kept in a sealed container with a little bit of water to keep it moist.



Veterinary emergencies will always be dealt with as soon as possible on a 24 hour a day basis; however, please note that there will be an emergency call-out fee outside normal surgery hours as it involves making a special arrangement to see you. Please bear in mind that I am on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week!

You should always ring my main number (07754 125302) first, which will give up to date information on the current situation, and whether emergencies-only service is operating (normally 6.00 pm - 8.30 am weeknights, weekends from Saturday 1.00 pm onwards, bank holidays and occasional other times). 



Unfortunately, I am not a charity. Drugs, facilities and me all require money!

All fees are payable at the time of consultation/animal collection; no account system is in operation except by special arrangement.
Payment may be by cash, cheque or most credit or debit cards (not American Express).

To give you an approximate idea of likely costs (these are not absolute):

Routine health checks and Reduced rate scheme - Gold client status

Although there are no routine vaccination for most of these species, it is always worth getting regular health checks and discussion of any concerns you may have, as well as an opportunity for me to upate you on any advances in care that might have been made. I therefore run a reduced rate scheme (Gold client status) which gives approximately 10% off consult fees and 25% off out-of-hours charges, (unfortunately this does not apply to charges from any covering emergency practice, as it is independent of me). To qualify, you must bring any animal in for a routine health check consultation in the preceding 12 months.


The premises that I operate from is in Oxford - reasonably accessible from Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Bucks, although I have had clients coming from as far away as Kent, Surrey, Bedfordshire, Hampshire and Portsmouth!

Address is 35 Iffley Road, Oxford OX4 1EA. This is on the Iffley Road (A4158) near the centre of Oxford.

For Google map to the surgery, please click here  or search google maps under the postcode (OX4 1EA). Alternatively I have drawn a overview map at overview directions Note that the car park is behind the practice building - you need to turn into Circus Street from Iffley Road (a sign on the corner says The Cricketers Arms), then first left into Alhambra Lane - the car park is about 50 m down on the left. These are very small narrow streets I'm afraid!

Basically you need to get on the Oxford ring Road Eastern bypass road (A4142).

From the A34, come off at the Hinksey Hill interchange, head towards Oxford on the A423. At the next roundabout go straight across (hamburger-type roundabout) heading south on the A423. First exit at the next roundabout (Heyford Hill roundabout big Sainsbury's just off it) onto Eastern Bypass Road (A4142). If coming up the A4074 from Reading direction, this joins the Sainsbury's roundabout so take second exit along the A4142

From there turn off at the Littlemore Roundabout into Oxford Road (A4158) heading into Oxford - this becomes Iffley Road further down (the surgery is about 2 miles from the roundabout). The car park is behind the surgery you need to turn off Iffley Road to the right into Circus Street (there is a pub on the corner - a sign on the corner wall says Cricketer's Arms, although the hanging sign says the Mad Hatter). From Circus Street turn left into an even smaller back street called Alhambra Lane, and the surgery car park is about 50 yards down there on the left.

If coming by public transport and unfamiliar with the area, the surgery is approximately 10 - 20 minutes taxi ride (under good traffic conditions) from Oxford rail station. Taking a bus from the station is possible (a bus to Iffley Road) or even walking (about 30 minutes from rail station) but a taxi would be easiest if you are unfamiliar with the area.





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