by Sherry Scott
I miss my friend Mary, we pioneered the techniques for animal physiotherapy together. We lectured on our findings and abilities to the veterinary profession and both took great delight in working together in a world that didn’t welcome us with open arms. We had to prove ourselves and what we could do before anyone would accept us. The Late Stuart Hastie MRCVS was perhaps our first convert and he later became the president for the animal only brigade.
Mary was a human physiotherapist first before including animals in her work. We first met when she was practicing in Wimpole Street London and I had an apartment nearby in Baker street. One afternoon in Baker Street an Italian gentleman came to show us a new device “ A Laser “ . It was being presented to us as amazing and dramatically good!!! Mary asked about the safety aspects and we worried as the Italian decided to demonstrate how safe and easy it was to use by sticking the probe under his fingernail. We could smell the familiar smell of a farrier... Mary’s face was a picture when he started to bleed profusely. It seemed he was demonstrating the surgical laser by mistake. ...Mary decided that perhaps this was not for animals at the moment thus delaying the use of laser therapy for some time.
Mary’s Downs House therapy yard was breaking new ground for animals. She was aware that in the racing world the owners would pay for livery and treatment so she was able to do a good and thorough job there.
We owe Mary so much, people working in the equine therapy industry might take a moment to be grateful as so much of our knowledge today is down to her tenacity. Mary was determined but kind, taking time to explain and educate the owners and students. Rabbit one of her daughters is studying with The college of Animal Physiotherapy at the moment so life has come full circle.
Mary and I have one regret. When we were accepted I was animal only and Mary was a Chartered human therapist first so there were two separate groups not one.
I miss you Mary.
Mary has a fantastic selection of books that are well worth adding to your library for reference. 'A way of life, Healing Animals', 'Equine Injury, Therapy and Rehabilitation' and 'Massage techniques for Horse and Rider' are just a few to mention.