Emergency 0330 999 1750
Whickham 0191 488 3092
Sunderland 0191 5673722
Washington - Temporarily Closed CLOSED
Gateshead 0191 487 7319

Sheriffs Highway is approved by the British Veterinary Hospital Association (BVHA) and therefore maintains high standards of clinical and client care, providing a range of excellent services. A number of our staff hold Certificates of Advanced Veterinary Practice in a range of areas. We also have vets with Official Controls Qualifications, meaning they can carry out exportation certificates for your pets. The practice is a recognised and approved Training Practice (TP) for Veterinary Nurses by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Sheriffs Highway has over 60 years’ experience in the Veterinary and Animal Health Industry and can be relied upon to offer expert guidance and support in absolute confidence. We boast veterinary and nursing teams that shows complete dedication to the pet-owning public.

  • Medical Services
  • Surgical Services
  • Yearly Check-ups
  • Vaccinations
  • Neutering
  • Dental Care
  • Diagnostics
  • Weight Clinic
  • Microchipping
  • Nail Clips
  • Pet Travel
  • House Visits
  • Dispensing/Prescribing

Medical Services

Facilities at the hospital include:

  • Modern Digital Radiography
  • Ultrasound Machine
  • Dental Machine
  • Electrocardiographs (ECG's)
  • Blood Pressure Monitor
  • Dental Suite
  • Hospital facilities, including 24-hour advice.
  • Anprolene Sterilisation Machine
  • In-house Laboratory Suite (Biochemical and Haematology machines)
  • Endoscopy

Surgical Services

Comprising of a large preparation area and two sterile surgical theatres. All theatres have modern anaesthetic machines, operating tables and lighting facilities.

Orthopaedic Theatre

This is fully equipped with the latest orthopaedic equipment and instrumentation. This theatre is mainly used for orthopaedic procedures such as fracture repairs, tibial tuberosity advancement and surgery for other musculoskeletal problems.

Main Theatre

This theatre is used for elective routine surgery such as neutering, emergency surgery, gastrointestinal surgery and other soft tissue operations. It is also equipped with an operating microscope for ophthalmic procedures.


There is a separate kennel ward on the first floor for recovering surgical patients. The kennels have their own air-conditioning and heating facilities to ensure that the patients recover as warm and as comfortably as possible. The kennels are regularly monitored until the patients are fully recovered from their anaesthetics and can be discharged.

Please contact us for advice and to arrange an appointment.

Yearly Check-ups

Here at Sheriffs Highway Veterinary Group, we strongly recommend yearly checks ups. This will be included in the price of your annual booster!

Yearly check-ups mean your pet is getting a full health check at least once a year which gives the vet a chance to pick up on any underlying problems which may not be obvious or even noticeable to the owner.

It is also a chance for owners to get advice on diets, behaviour or just put their mind at rest that their pet is as healthy as they had thought!


Dogs and cats, young and old are at risk from a number of diseases that can result in permanent health damage or even death.

However, vaccination and regular boosters can prevent these diseases and allow the veterinary surgeon to examine your pet and to assess his or her health and to advise you on maintaining a healthy pet.

At Sheriff's Highway Veterinary Hospital, we approach vaccination from an individual animal basis - we tailor protection to your pet’s needs. If you have any concerns regarding our vaccination protocols, please feel free to discuss them at your pet's annual wellness examination.


Puppy Vaccines

1st vaccination is generally given at 8 weeks of age though it can be given from 6 weeks of age. 2nd Vaccination is from 10 weeks of age and at least 2 weeks after the first. Puppies can be socialised one week after the 2nd vaccine.

Vaccinations protect against:

  • Parvovirus
  • Distemper
  • Hepatitis
  • Leptospirosis

We recommend an additional vaccine for Parvovirus to be given from 16 weeks onwards. The Parvovirus vaccine is included if you are a member of the Pet Health Club.

Options in addition to routine course:

  • Kennel Cough (caused by Bordetella bronchiseptica)
  • Rabies


For your dog to be fully vaccinated they will need to be given an annual booster. If your dog has not had their annual booster more than 3 months after the due date, you will need to re-start your dog’s vaccines as if it were a puppy.


Kitten Vaccines

1st Vaccination can be given from 8 weeks old. 2nd Vaccination is given 3-4 weeks later at a minimum of 12 weeks of age.

Cat vaccinations give protection against:

  • Feline Panleucopaenia
  • Feline viral infectious respiratory disease "Cat Flu”
  • Feline Leukaemia Virus (FeLV)

We are aware that there is a degree of controversy regarding vaccinations, especially the requirement for annual vaccination. We are happy to discuss and adapt the vaccination regime to individual animals rather than provide a blanket approach.

If you are member of The Pet Health Club your pet's yearly vaccinations are included in your membership.




Castration may be carried out for therapeutic reasons (treatment of orchitis, perineal hernia, testicular tumours or prostatis), social reasons or as part of a neutering programme. Occasionally, castration is recommended to control behaviour problems such as roaming, excessive libido or aggression. Castration can have a positive effect on such problems but should never be done as a 'quick fix' as there is no guarantee that it will change what may have become a learned behaviour.

Castration involves making an incision just in front of the scrotum and removing the testes. The skin is then closed with suture. There are few complications associated with the healing of the surgical site. The patient is usually allowed home the same day.

Female Dogs

Neutering or spaying of bitches involves a full ovariohysterectomy, where the whole reproductive tract is removed. Patients are usually allowed home the same day, we see them back for a check over around 3-5 days after surgery and again at 10 days after surgery.

Neutering may increase the tendency for male and female dogs to gain weight. However, in our opinion, this will only occur if the dog is either overfed or under exercised or, more usually, both.

At Sheriff's Highway Veterinary Hospital, we are in favour of all female dogs, unless intended for breeding, being surgically neutered.


The number of cats owned as pets in the United Kingdom now exceeds the number of pet dogs and will continue to rise in years to come. Cat owners should consider surgical neutering as part of responsible pet ownership.

Cats become sexually active from five to six months of age. The reproductive cycle of the female is approximately three weeks long during which time she will come into season or come on call for two to four days. It is during this time that she will be attractive to male cats, will look to mate, and will very likely become pregnant. Cats are more sexually active in the spring and the autumn.

For behavioural and medical reasons, surgical neutering is recommended.

Surgical neutering of female cats involves a full ovariohysterectomy, where the whole reproductive tract is removed under general anaesthesia. This is usually performed through a small incision in the flank, or a midline abdominal incision. Patients are usually allowed home the same day and have their external stitches - if placed - removed after around 10 days.

Surgical neutering of male cats involves removal of both testicles (Castration) under general anaesthesia. Patients are returned home the same day and are reviewed only as necessary.

Neutering may increase the tendency for male and female cats to gain weight. However, in our opinion, this will only occur if the cat is overfed, under exercised, or more usually, both.

At Sheriffs Highway Veterinary Hospital, we are in favour of all male and female cats, unless intended for breeding, being surgically neutered.

If you are a Pet Health Club member you will receive 20% off neutering.

Dental Care

As we all know, we should brush our teeth at least twice a day to keep them healthy. But did we know that we should brush our pet’s teeth regularly as well?

As early as 2 years of age 80% of dogs and 70% of cats can show some signs of dental disease. This is caused by a build-up of tartar, which is laid down over time from food. Obviously if your pet is not getting any treatment for their teeth then this build up is inevitable.

Overcrowding of teeth can also be a problem. Smaller breeds of dogs are more likely to suffer from this and it can predispose them to dental disease.

If left too long the plaque and tartar can lead to gingivitis - a painful condition of inflamed gums. This can damage the supporting structures of the teeth, which can lead to loss of teeth.

Any infection in the teeth would be caused by bacteria and therefore is the main culprit for bad breath, and also bacteria can enter into the bloodstream and spread to vital organs such as heart, liver and kidneys.

Signs to look out for: 

  • Bad breath
  • Bleeding gums
  • Pawing at mouth
  • Build-up of tartar
  • Loose teeth
  • Dribbling/drooling

A regular visit to us could help determine dental disease. During annual vaccinations or routine check-ups. We can look for signs of gum and tooth damage and determine, whether any treatment is necessary such as a routine scale and polish +/- extractions. Both these procedures can only be performed under general anaesthetic.

The procedures are carried in exactly the same way as your dentist or hygienist. Following this treatment, good oral hygiene could help this reoccurring.

This can be using special pet toothpaste massaged onto the gum, or applied using a toothbrush (do not use human prepared toothpaste). There are also special diets that can be used with abrasive biscuits.

Please telephone or make an appointment and we can provide you with information on dental care, brushing, the correct toothpaste, diets and the possibility that your pet may need a scale and polish. If you are a Pet Health Club member you will receive 10% off dental treatment.


Diagnostic equipment will often be recommended by your vet to help establish what disease process might be affecting your pet.

We have a modern direct digital radiography suite. This means that our patients can have radiographs of the highest possible quality with an almost immediate image display, meaning they are not under anaesthetic/sedation for as long as they might be with 'normal' x-ray machines.

In addition, it is now possible to link the computerised x-rays into the patient records, so that anyone treating your pet has immediate access to the images.


We have a modern ultrasound machine at the hospital, with vets who hold and are working towards further qualifications in veterinary ultrasonography, both abdominal and cardiac.

Please contact the practice for further advice and an appointment.


We are proud to have a video endoscope machine at the hospital. This is a delicate and expensive instrument combining a light source, which is used for visual examination of the interior of a body cavity or hollow organ. It provides a non-invasive means of viewing and obtaining tissue samples from a variety of body organs.

Weight Clinic

Our fantastic vet nurses are now offering free weight clinics for both new and existing clients.

During the appointment, one of our experienced Registered Veterinary Nurses will:

  • Take a detailed history to identify any underlying factors
  • Assess body conditioning and give your pet a body condition score (BCS)
  • Weigh your pet
  • Measure neck, chest and abdomen
  • Assess your pet's diet and exercise regimen

There will then be a detailed discussion of your pet's recommended weight-loss plan including; a diet tailored to your pet, exercise modifications, and potential health conditions which could be contributing to your pet's weight.

You will then bring your pet in for regular reviews to allow progress to be measured and adjustments made as needed. There's no limit to the number of free reviews offered, this is determined by both you and our vet nurse. However, we generally recommend fortnightly reviews initially, moving to monthly for as long as needed.

Book your pet's free weight appointment or find out more by calling the clinic directly, here.


This quick and simple procedure ensures that your pet can be easily identified wherever they go.

An 'identichip' is a tiny microchip with an identification code unique to you and your pet. It is injected under the loose skin at the back of the neck. If your pet goes missing and is picked up, a widely available scanner will detect the identichip and read the unique code. All your details are recorded on a computer database and you will be contacted immediately.

An identichip is completely safe for your pet and causes no discomfort beyond that of any other injection.

If you are attending the practice for a routine check-up or booster, you can always ask for your pet to be identichipped at the same time. As of the 6th of April 2016, all dogs must be microchipped and registered on an authorised database. Microchipping is free for members of our Pet Health Club.

Nail Clips

Most pets getting regular exercise with access to a hard surface won’t need regular nail clipping. If your pet does however need their nails clipped, one of our vets or qualified veterinary nurses would be happy to do it for you or even demonstrate how to do yourself for in the future.

Cats or dogs' nails should not grow further than the pads on their paws. If they do this can be very uncomfortable and may lead to the nail growing into the pad themselves which can cause infection and is very painful.

If you are unsure whether your pet’s nails are too long or not, then just ask at one of our branches for one of our staff to have a quick look at your pet.

Small animals such as guinea pigs and rabbits can also benefit from getting their nails clipped. Pet Health Club members receive 2 free nail clips a year.

Pet Travel

Travelling abroad and want to take your pet?

For more information on Pets Travel Scheme (PETS), please view the following sites.

For more information, feel free to give us a call or make an appointment for your pet to see one of our vets.

House Visits

House visits are occasionally necessary but in nearly all situations the best possible care for your pet is if you bring them to the practice.

Bringing your pet to the practice will give us immediate access to the range of drugs and equipment required and ensures no delay to commencing treatment.


Repeat prescriptions are available from this practice. We are permitted to dispense or prescribe drugs only for animals that are under our care. For patients who require long-term medication we need therefore to have frequent contact with the owners, and need to actually physically examine the animal from time to time, usually every one to six months depending on the circumstances, before dispensing or prescribing repeat medication.

Please also note that:

  • Prescriptions are available from this practice.
  • You may obtain Prescription-only Medicines, Category V, (POM-Vs) from your veterinary surgeon OR ask for a prescription and obtain these medicines from another veterinary surgeon or a pharmacy.
  • Your veterinary surgeon may prescribe POM-Vs only for animals under their care.
  • A prescription may not be appropriate if your animal is an in-patient or if immediate treatment is necessary.
  • You will be informed, on request, of the price of any medicine that may be dispensed for your animal.

The general policy of this practice is to re-assess an animal requiring repeat prescriptions every three to six months, but this may vary with individual circumstances.

Repeat your pet's prescription here.

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