The Yorkshire Vet is back for a brand new series and will once again be following the day-to-day life of veterinary surgeon Peter Wright and other vets including his former colleague Julian Norton.
Here in an exclusive interview, Peter, 64, who began his career working with the All Creatures Great And Small vets - Alf Wight and Donald Sinclair (best known as James Herriot and Siegfried Farnon) at their practice in Thirsk, North Yorkshire, tells us about some of the animals he'll be treating this series at his practice, Grace Lane Vets in Kirkybymoorside.
Peter also reveals his most bizarre cases ever and why he'd love a role in a very special drama that's close to his heart...
Tell us about some of the animals you’re going to be treating this series?
"In the first episode I operate on two Shetland ponies, Bentley and Ralph, who both need to be castrated. Fans of the show know I spend a lot of my time castrating animals of one type or another!
"When male horses and ponies have hormones rampaging through them they can be unpredictable and dangerous, especially where children are concerned so we castrate them mainly for safety and to make them more manageable.
"Shetlands have minds of their own but are superb pets once they're trained. And they look very cute indeed, although looks can be deceiving sometimes can’t they!"
Any tricky births you’ve got to deal with in this series of The Yorkshire Vet?
"There’s a lovely story where Julian (Peter’s former colleague, vet Julian Norton) does a cesarean section on a bitch who produced 14 live puppies. It was absolutely fantastic. I think that’s the biggest litter I’ve ever come across in my entire career. A job like that makes up for the sad bits that you get in our world as well."
What’s been the most extraordinary scenario you’ve had to deal with in your career?
"One that really stands out is when a lady came in with a young bulldog called Little Boss who had hurt his nether regions. It transpired Little Boss had tried to get amorous with a hedgehog and Little Boss definitely came off worse than the hedgehog!
"I also remember a Siamese cat who was brought in with a swollen abdomen. I was gobsmacked when I operated and discovered it had 13 hairbands in its stomach. It had a taste for them! They all belonged to its owner who wore her hair in a ponytail so perhaps this was the cat's way of getting close to its owner. We certainly do get some very bizarre cases. "
Have you watched the remake of All Creatures Great And Small which is coming back for a second series soon?
"Yes and I think it’s absolutely fantastic. I was apprehensive when I heard they were doing a remake because the initial series was such a massive success. As students in the 70s we used to watch it on a crackly television set in our Liverpool digs and of course I was fortunate enough to work with Alf Wight and Donald Sinclair, best known as Siegfired Farnham and James Herriot.
"I have to say, Sam West is brilliant in his portrayal of Donald and Nicholas Ralph is great as James, (based on Alf). He’s got this lovely Scottish accent which of course Alf Wight, who was brought up in Glasgow, had."
Would you like a cameo role in the series? What are your acting skills like?
"Oh, I would absolutely love to do that, I’d crawl on my hands and knees to be part of it. If you could fix that I'd be forever in your debt!"
No thoughts of retiring any time soon then?
"I had that option before I made the move to the Grace Lane practice in Kirkbymoorside, but when I asked my wife Lin, ‘Do you think I should retire’ she replied in typical blunt Yorkshire fashion, ‘Well I don’t want you under my feet every day!’ So I got the message pretty quickly.
"And besides, I don’t want to retire. I’m doing what I love doing and I go off to work with a spring in my step. ‘I’ve still got some work left in me’ as the farmers around here would say!"
The Yorkshire Vet is back on Tuesday 7 September on Channel 5 at 8pm.
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