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Cambridge vet uses dentistry skills at orangutan rescue and rehabilitation centre.

Cambridge vet uses dentistry skills at orangutan rescue and rehabilitation centre.

Cambridge Vet Helps Rescued Orangutan Back Into The Wild

5 months ago

31st January, 2024 11h14

Linnaeus Group

A rescued orangutan called Dias who underwent much-needed dental treatment is now loving life back in the wild in Borneo thanks to a Cambridge vet. 

Gerhard Putter, small animal dentistry and oral surgery specialist at Linnaeus-owned DWR Veterinary Specialists, had travelled to Asia for a teaching trip and to deliver a much-needed dental unit which had been donated by the animal hospital. 

While at the orangutan rescue and rehabilitation centre, he also used his dentistry skills to treat Dias and thanks to his efforts the rescued orangutan has been released. 

Gerhard said: “A DWR donated dental unit was used by us in Borneo to help the release of a rescued ape back to the wild! To me personally a major thrill.” 

The dental unit had been donated to Orangutan Veterinary Aid (OVAID), a charity which supplies veterinary surgeons working with critically endangered orangutan in Malaysia and Indonesia, with equipment, medicine and training opportunities. 

OVAID organised and sponsored the teaching trip, which also included Laurent Locquet, specialist cardiologist at DWR Veterinary Specialists, and Aleksandr Semjonov, a senior anaesthetist from Estonia. 

The overseas trip saw the trio spend a week teaching at the Orangutan Veterinary Advisory Group (OVAG) workshop, followed by a second week carrying out a clinical and teaching workshop with local vets from all the major orangutan rescue centres across Borneo and Sumatra, who jointly care from more than 880 rescued orangutan and sun bears. The OVAID workshops were held at the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) in Samboja Lestari, where the dental unit is now being used. 

OVAID, who also supplied digital dental radiography to the BOS Foundation, is keen to accept donated veterinary equipment, especially dentistry. To learn more about OVAID, visit OVAID is happy to accept used dentistry equipment and have it serviced before it is delivered to the orangutan rescue centres.

DWR Veterinary Specialists offers specialist-led care in anaesthesia and analgesia, cardiothoracic surgery, dentistry, oral and maxillofacial surgery, cardiology, dermatology, diagnostic imaging, diagnostic pathology, emergency and critical care, internal medicine, interventional radiology, neurology and neurosurgery, oncology, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, physiotherapy and soft tissue surgery. 

For more information on DWR Veterinary Specialists, visit or search for DWR Veterinary Specialists on social media. 

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