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CityVets Exotics and Small mammal service is led by European Specialist Livia Benato,  a Certificate holder in Zoological medicine and Diploma holder in Small Mammal medicine, the first to be based in Exeter. Livia joined CityVets in October 2015 and is a permanent member of staff. Livia is able to offer both first opinion appointments for routine check-ups and vaccinations  and  referral appointments  for the more complex and demanding cases. Livia offers advice and support to the existing CityVets team but is also available for more in-depth cases that require advanced techniques and the latest knowledge.

CityVets ( Heavitree) is a Gold Standard Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund (RWAF) practice. CityVets St Thomas has been awarded Silver Standard from the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund. These awards recognise that we are dedicated to providing outstanding care and facilities with knowledgeable vets to improve the health and welfare of domestic rabbits.

The term ‘Exotics’ covers everything from small mammals such as rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas, rats and hamsters to reptiles including lizards, tortoises and terrapins, and snakes through to small and large birds such as parrots, raptors, cockatiels, budgerigars, chickens and more!

Kristina joined CityVets in January 2020 as European Resident in Small Mammal Medicine and Surgery to further develop her skills in the exotics practice whilst working closely with Livia, EBVS Small Mammal Specialist. Kristina is currently working towards her European Diploma in Small Mammal Medicine as part of her residency programme.

Livia and Kristina, our exotic and small mammal animal vets, are available for seeing cases, both for CityVets clients and external clients at our Heavitree Hospital and St Thomas branch. Please complete a referral request form to refer a case or call 01392 250066 to discuss.  Referrals and second opinions are welcome.

Species seen by our Exotic Pet Services include;

  • Rabbits
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Chinchillas
  • Rats
  • Hamster
  • Mice
  • Skunks
  • Ferrets
  • Pygmy Hedgehogs
  • Degus
  • Sugar Gliders
  • Budgerigars
  • Amazon parrots
  • Macaws
  • Senegal parrots
  • Cockatoo
  • Love birds Gerbils
  • Coatis
  • Geckos
  • Terrapins
  • Tortoises
  • Turtles
  • Water and Bearded Dragons
  • Pythons
  • Boa Constrictors
  • Corn Snakes and other species of snakes
  • Parrots
  • Raptors
  • Cockatiels
  • Chickens
  • African Grey Parrots

And many more…!

If your species of exotic is not listed please call us for guidance as this list is not exhaustive.

It's time for tortoise hibernation!

Hibernation is an important part of tortoise management. It is part of the seasonal variation and gives tortoises a natural rest. If tortoises do not hibernate, the increased metabolism and food intake could lead to abnormal growth. When the days get shorter and the environmental temperatures decrease, tortoises get ready to hibernate. Hibernation can be a critical time for a tortoise and careful planning is necessary for a successful outcome. Our tortoise hibernation care sheet provides more information here.

CALL US TODAY TO BOOK YOUR PRE and POST-HIBERNATION CHECK by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or phone 01392 250066.

Rabbit Vaccination – Information for Owners

Vaccination available for Rabbits

Every year your rabbit is vaccinated against three fatal infectious diseases: Myxomatosis and Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease (RHDV1 and RHDV2).

A new triple vaccine  is available at CityVets and is strongly recommended this for all indoor and outdoor rabbits.  The new vaccine will provide the necessary protection and help towards preventing this disease from spreading further.

If you are interested in having your rabbit/s vaccinated or would like to have more information about rabbit vaccine, please contact CityVets Heavitree by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or phone 01392 250066.

We also offer a pay monthly rabbit healthcare plan. Find out more here.

Client Information Sheets

  • Alphington | 12 Lovelace Gardens,
    Exeter, Devon,
    EX2 8XQ
    | T: 01392 493999 |
  • Heavitree | Rosary House,
    27 Fore Street,
    Heavitree, Exeter,
    EX1 2QJ
    | T: 01392 250066 |
  • St Thomas | 101 Buddle Lane,
    St Thomas,
    Exeter, Devon,
    EX4 1QS
    | T: 01392 250000 |
  • Whipton | 46 Whipton Village Road,
    EX4 8AW
    | T: 01392 465553 |