Book Review: Listening to the Animals

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Listening to the Animals Becoming the Supervet

One of the things I love that I don’t write about here that much is the animal kingdom – particularly dogs – and this love has been fuelled in recent years by a fascinating program, ‘The Supervet’, about Noel Fitzpatrick. Noel runs a practice – the excitingly named ‘Fitzpatrick Referrals’ – and is a pioneer in surgeries on animals particularly in terms of helping dogs, cats and other small animals regain motor function. He has done some amazing things with animal bionics – and hopes to one day pursue ‘One Medicine’, bringing human and animal medicine together.

This book is his story so far – and it is fascinating.

This is not a manifesto for anything – other than one man’s passionate pursuit of excellence – but it is a fascinating and enjoyable read. Noel comes from an Irish Catholic farming family – and it is profoundly touching to see the way that each part of that background has contributed to his passion and purpose.

This is a book by a ‘celebrity’, who has actually achieved something other than being famous, and seems to genuinely care for other people, and of course for other animals. Written in a conversational style, this is an easy read that gives insight into a public figure with some genuinely interesting things to say.

If you are an animal lover, or just looking for a reasonably light – with the possible content warnings around Noel’s bullying at school – but readable biography, thenĀ Listening to the Animals: Becoming the Supervet is a great read. There is a delightful mix of humour, science, learning, romance and history that makes this a really enjoyable book. Not many books make me smile so much, and come close to tearing up!

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