Small Animal All-Inclusive* Safari Event - 6 Days of Lectures, Practical Sessions & Amazing Wildlife

Small Animals

Date: Sun 5th Nov 2023 - Sat 11th Nov 2023
Venue: Mongena & other surrounding Game Lodges
Location: Dinokeng Game Reserve (Johannesburg O.R. Tambo International Airport)
Contact Hours: 18 hours
Event Language: English
  • Net price, no tax will be added*
  • Choose currency at checkout
1 Vet - all inclusive -
EUR 3400.00
EUR 3750.00
1 Vet & 1 non-Vet Guest (no CE) -
EUR 3950.00
EUR 4345.00
2 Vets - shared room, all inclusive -
EUR 6190.00
EUR 6790.00
Early Booking Deadline: Saturday 1st July 2023
Registration Deadline: Thursday 31st August 2023

* VAT (= MWST/MOMS/SALES TAX) will only be added for certain UK vets attending events abroad and for all attendees when attending events in the UK.


Sun 5. - Sat 11. November, 2023– 6 Days of Lectures, Practical Sessions (incl. laparoscopic spays) & Amazing Wildlife




VetPD has combined an exhilarating week-long safari experience at the Mongena Game Lodge****  in the Dinokeng Game Reserve, near Johannesburg, South Africa, with a total of 25 hours of safaris, 21 hours of cutting-edge lectures / case discussions and 28 hours of workshops/wetlabs on live dogs and specimens for attendees to choose from. The following internationally renowned speakers will be involved with this event and are aiming their lectures and wetlabs at experienced general and advanced practitioners: Drs. Antonio Pozzi (Zürich), Hans Westermeyer (NC State Univ.), Neil Forbes (UK), Adriaan Kitshoff, Christiaan Blignaut & Johan Schoeman (South Africa).


The Dinokeng Game Reserve is a malaria-free game reserve, 1 hours' drive from Johannesburg International Airport. There the ‘Big Five’ (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard & rhinoceros) roam wild and free in the 18,500-hectare game reserve.  Bass fishing and the obligatory swimming pool will provide you with the ideal environment to relax with your friends and accompanying partner/guest. The lectures and wetlabs will be held at Mongena Game Lodge.  Guest will be staying at one of the following stunning Lodges within the Dinokeng Game Reserve, a short scenic drive from Mongena Game Lodge:  Chameleon Bush Lodge and Wild Ways Bush Camp.

From Mon – Thu there will be a total of 4-5 hrs of sunrise- and sunset safaris per day and the lectures and practical sessions will be held between 10.15am – 3.30pm.  Every day attendees can choose from several streams of highly illustrated lectures (in English) or workshops/wetlabs on a wide range of current imaging, orthopaedic, medical, anaesthesia & surgical topics.  The evenings will be free for leisurely wining and dining, to meet up with old friends and to make new ones.

During the event open and frank discussions are encouraged and the speakers will share their personal experiences with attendees, be it successes or failures.  There will be plenty of opportunities to discuss diagnostic/therapeutic strategies and cases with the speakers during the lectures or the dedicated case discussions.

The 28 hours of practical sessions will give attendees plenty of opportunity to put theory into practice on live dogs and specimens in small groups, all under the supervision of the specialists.

Overview of Workshop/Wetlab Topics:


  • Laparoscopy Drylab / Ex-Vivo Lab
  • Laparoscopic Spays on live Dogs (2 attendees per instructor & dog)
  • General Anaesthetic Techniques on live Dogs (incl. induction, maintenance, routine & advanced ventilation techniques etc.)
  • Regional & Epidural Anaesthesia Techniques on Cadavers
  • Point-of-Care Ultrasound (specimens & live dogs)
  • Ultrasound-Guided Biopsy Techniques (specimens)
  • Diagnostic & Therapeutic Ophthalmologic Techniques (specimens & live dogs)
  • Avian, Exotics & Small Mammals – Medicine & Surgery


  • Internal Medicine
  • Point-of-Care Ultrasound
  • Anaesthesia & Pain Management
  • Soft Tissue Surgery (esp. laparoscopy & laparoscopic spays)
  • Orthopaedic Surgery & Sports Medicine/Rehabilitation
  • Small Animal Ophthalmology
  • Avian, Exotics & Small Mammals – Medicine & Surgery

On Friday there won’t be any lectures or practical sessions, which will allow attendees and their partners/guests to relax at the pool, go for a bush walk or go on a daytrip to explore this beautiful region.

Daytrips to 'Adventure with Elephants', Kevin Richardson, the lion whisperer, 'Rhino Save Haven' and the Diamond Mine in Cullinan to name but a few can be organised through our partner 'Dinokeng Events' (Subject to availability and surcharges (transfers & entrance at cost) apply).

With regards to the practical sessions, please note that spaces are limited. We will allocate spaces on a first come first serve basis so make sure you register early.

*The event fee includes airport transfers, accommodation, all meals (incl. tea/coffee and one soft drink per meal), transfers between lodges and the sunrise and sunset safaris from Monday to Thursday, all lectures and wetlabs as well as extensive event notes and a certificate of attendance. Attendees can choose to stay in a single room or can share a room with another attendee at a reduced price.  Attendees are also welcome to attend the event with a partner/guest (special guest price available).  The event fee does not include flights or alcoholic drinks. Rooms are allocated at the discretion of VetPD. Early event registration is recommended as there are only a limited number of places available.


Additional Terms & Conditions:

  1. VetPD Ltd, accepts liability for the event program only (lectures & practical sessions)
  2. Liability for airport transfer, accommodation, meals and all other pre-booked components (safari & golfing activities etc.) rest with the Mongena Game Lodge. Cancellation of these components of the event is subject to the Terms and Conditions of the Mongena Game Lodge (see here for further details).
  3. Attendees are expected to take out comprehensive medical and travel insurance in the event of unforeseen circumstances leading to attendees falling ill or having to cancel their trip to South Africa.
  • VetPD

    Neil Forbes
    BVetMed, Dip ECZM(avian), FRCVS

    United Kingdom

    European & RCVS Specialist in Avian Medicine
    More Info

    Neil qualified from the Royal Veterinary College in 1983. He is a Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine, RCVS Specialist emeritus in Zoo & Wildlife (avian) and an FRCVS. Neil was responsible for teaching avian medicine at Bristol Vet School from 2001–2011. He has lectured internationally for many years, has contributed to more than seventy six peer review papers and to more than thirty-seven books. Neil has received multiple national and international awards and is a past President of both, The European College of Zoological Medicine and The European Board of Specialisation.

    Neil headed up Great Western Exotic Vets (part of the Vets Now group) in Swindon, from 2004 to 2017. He now consults part-time at a range of national and internal locations. He is otherwise occupied with voluntary conservation work with critically endangered vultures, lecturing, and managing other consultancy instructions.

    Full details
  • VetPD

    Antonio Pozzi
    Prof., Dr.Med.Vet., Dipl.ECVS, Dipl.ACVS, Dipl.ACVSMR


    European & American Specialist in Small Animal Veterinary Surgery, American Specialist in Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation
    More Info

    Antonio Pozzi is the Director of the Clinic of Small Animal Surgery and head of the Small Animal Department at the University of Zurich. He completed an internship and residency at the Ohio State University. He became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2006 and a Diplomate of the American College of Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation in 2013. From 2007 to 2014 he worked at the University of Florida where he was appointed Associate Professor at the College of Veterinary Medicine and adjunct Professor at College of Medicine and College of Engineering. Since 2014 he worked at the University of Zurich, where he leads a team focusing on sport medicine, trauma and surgery. His special interests are canine sports medicine, minimally invasive surgery, regenerative therapies and joint surgery.

    Full details
  • VetPD

    Hans Westermeyer
    DVM, Dipl.ACVO

    United States

    American Specialist in Veterinary Ophthalmology
    More Info

    Dr. Westermeyer joined the NC State Veterinary Medicine team on January 20, 2015 as an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology. He grew up in Chile, South America. After obtaining his Veterinary Degree from the University of Missouri, Columbia, he completed a rotating internship in small animal medicine and surgery at the University of Tennessee.

    Following a research fellowship at the University of California, Davis, he returned to the University of Tennessee to complete his residency training in Comparative Ophthalmology. Immediately after completing his residency, Dr. Westermeyer moved to Hong Kong for four years and worked in private practice. His research interest is in modulation of scarring after glaucoma valve surgery.

    Full details
  • VetPD

    Johan Schoeman

    South Africa

    European Specialist in Veterinary Internal Medicine
    More Info

    Prof. Johan Schoeman qualified as a veterinarian from the University of Pretoria in 1991. After spending seven years working in a veterinary mixed (small and large animal) practice in the United Kingdom, he was appointed as a lecturer at the University of Cambridge, where he completed his training for the RCVS specialist diploma in small animal medicine (DSAM). He joined the Department as a senior lecturer in 2000.

    In 2001, he obtained specialist qualifications in Small Animal Medicine from the RCVS (DSAM), the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ECVIM) and the University of Pretoria (MMedVet). During 2004 and 2005 he was Head of Small Animal Medicine. Prof. Schoeman is a former chair of the ECVIM examination board – a body that examines and certifies specialist veterinary physicians across Europe. He has been Head of the Department of Companion Animal Clinical Studies for two terms (8 years) until October 2017. He currently leads the Faculty’s pathobiology research theme and has rekindled his passion for clinical teaching, whilst diagnosing and treating referred small animal medicine cases, especially those with cardiac and/or endocrine disease manifestations.

    Prof. Schoeman has successfully supervised 14 Masters and 4 PhD students, published 65 scientific papers, 10 textbook chapters, and presented over 80 international scientific, peer-reviewed congress presentations in Europe and the USA and he has delivered more than 100 regional and national CPD lectures.

    Full details
  • VetPD

    Adriaan Kitshoff
    BVSc (Hons.), MSc, Dipl.ECVS (SA)

    South Africa

    European Specialist in Small Animal Surgery
    More Info

    Dr. Adriaan Kitshoff joined the Department of Companion Animal Clinical Studies in February 2020 after spending some time in specialist private practice. Dr. Kitshoff attained his European board certification in small animal surgery in 2016 and is currently working as a specialist surgeon in the Section of Small Animal Surgery at Onderstepoort Veterinary Academic Hospital. Dr. Kitshoff’s primary duties are clinical case management and practical training of final year veterinary student and surgical residents. Dr. Kitshoff has 29 publications in peer reviewed journals.

    Full details
Mongena & other surrounding Game Lodges


Mongena Game Lodge
Rust De Winter Road
D48 Dinokeng Game Reserve
Hammanskraal, Gauteng

Frequently Asked Questions

Travel to Dinokeng Game Reserve, South Africa

  • Mongena Game lodge is located in the Dinokeng Game Reserve and one of the biggest lodges in the area. Dinokeng Game Reserve is in a malaria free area. Check your government advice on vaccination etc as it differs for country to country.

The CDC and WHO recommend the following vaccinations for South Africa: hepatitis Ahepatitis Btyphoidcholerayellow fever, rabies, meningitis, polio, measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis), chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia and influenza. Shot lasts 2 years.

Money and tipping

The local currency is South African Rand (ZAR) (100R is approximately $7.40 / £5.60 / €6.50)

It is advisable to exchange money into local currency – either at the airport or in your country ahead of the event. However, there is a shop nearby, where the rangers or VetPD can take you to, which has an ATM.

There is no expectation of tipping at Mongena Game Lodge. The guideline is voluntary tipping of 10% on service fee/food/beverages


Plugs  are different and special adpaters need to be brought. Same applies to Voltage for vets traveling from the from US

Dress Code

The entire event is very casual. For wetlabs, shorts and t-shirt are perfectly fine.

For dinner, the dress code is also very casual.

During the early morning and evening safaris a warm jumper, cardigan or coat is useful to have as it can get quite cold on the open plan jeeps.

Don’t forget to pack: Top tips

  • Adaptor for South African wall plugs
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect spray
  • Binoculars

Optional Excursions

While the game drives at Mongena lodge are part of the attraction, you can also choose to visit some attractions outside Dinokeng Game Reserve.

The area offers lots of interesting places, activities and exciting things to do! Within just one to two hour drives you´ll get to some spectacular destinations. Take a look below!

If you need any further information or like to pre-book, please get in touch. For many of these events prebooking is essential and spaces are limited!

The Ann van Dyk Cheetah CentrePreservation & protection of cheetahs

Mystic Monkeys & Feathers Zoo  Playing with cubs

Quad Bike Safari  Guided safari also for non experienced            

Diamond Mine Cullinan  Guided surface tour of a working diamond mine

Glen Afric Country Lodge  Home to the ‘Wild at Heart’ film place                                     

Microlite Flight – Go up if you dare


If you would prefer to book 'Lectures & Practical sessions only' alternative lodgings are available and can be booked:

Please get in touch with regards to special prices for Lectures & Practical sessions only.

“A once-in-a-lifetime experience combining continuing education with adventure - very professional and flexible organisers.”

Tore Malmei, Veterinærene Nyland & Malmei, Norway

“Very well-organized event with superb wetlabs supervised by highly-dedicated speakers. Great spouse program!”

Päivi Nussbaumer, Clinique du Vieux Château, Swizterland

“Well organised, small initmate course with great academic content.”

Angela Rogers, Blue Hills Veterinary Hospital, South Africa

“Super meeting with vets all over the world, real holiday atmosphere, a congress I would book again anytime, Super staff and service of your team and Mongena, we really enjoyed it and still do.”

Michael Saxer

“Very good quality conference with amazing outside activities, great accommodation & food which made it a very enjoyable week. It is easy to very nice to meet the other attendees.”

Mailys Giradoux