Troubador Not Grazing but Browsing

Released: 28/03/2021

ISBN: 9781800462717

Format: Paperback

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Not Grazing but Browsing

Spilling the Beans on Life as a Woman and Vet

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Not Grazing but Browsing describes how to make it through life as a woman and a vet. Make no mistake, this is not out of the James Herriot stable. Although written with poignancy and humour, self-deprecation and a good deal of mischief, there is little to laugh about in some of the issues discussed here. With raw and gritty realism Sheilagh Nisbet describes some of the harrowing aspects of being a vet such as having to put to sleep a dozen unwanted and unloved dogs in one morning. 


In this enlivening and edifying memoir, Sheilagh Nisbet describes how she negotiated a path through general practice, academia and government work, and alongside a discussion on the value of conserving rare breed animals, she describes how she came to breed a Greek horse that no-one wants. Her experience in ending animals’ lives inspires a reflection on current debates on human assisted dying. 

Not Grazing but Browsing is a searingly honest description of the blood, sweat, tears, fears and artfulness of a woman who occupied a profession where men were slow to accept women colleagues. This is a passionate and personal account of Nisbet’s journey through happiness, heartbreak, poor mental health, imposter syndrome and what to do if you find yourself in the wrong job.

Sheilagh's debut book, 'Not grazing but browsing' is a memoir explaining how she has got through life so far as a woman and vet, covering times when men were slow to accept women into the profession.

But make no mistake, this is not out of the James Herriot stable. Although written with poignancy and humour, self-deprecation and a good deal of mischief, there is little to laugh about in some of the issues Sheilagh discusses. With raw and gritty realism she describes some of the harrowing aspects of being a vet. Do you know what it's like to put to sleep a dozen unwanted and unloved dogs in one morning? Can you imagine what that does to you and how it influences your thoughts on human assisted dying?

In this enlivening and edifying book, Sheilagh explains how a vet gets to her early sixties with all her marbles and a degree of optimism. And if you've ever wondered how to deal with discrimination, poor mental health, ill-fitting PPE, and a police officer who stops you for driving without headlights, then this is a must-read for you.

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Sheilagh Nisbet

After qualifying in 1979, Sheilagh Nisbet enjoyed a number of roles as a vet while raising a family of five and breeding wee Greek horses.

In 2015, she gained a masters degree in creative writing (with distinction, she likes to add) then turned from the requirement for absolute truth applied in her many papers published in veterinary journals to write creatively.

She lives near Melrose amongst horses, donkeys, pigs and llamas, as well as her whippet.


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