The humans of sick and injured animals in Graaff-Reinet rush to Dr. Natasja Burger for world-class health care services – so let’s meet the hero with the white jacket and the golden heart.

Let’s get to know the good doctor before we dive into her expert advice.

What made you want to become a vet?

I guess the generic answer would be my love for animals, but both my mom and dad are in medical professions so I’m sure that also played a role. As a child I loved playing with bandages and fixing everything with them.

Do you have pets?

I have a naughty, but loveable, Russian Blue cat named Ono, two lovebirds, Avo and Marshmallow, and two brown house snakes, Beatrice and Brünhilda. I unfortunately had to say goodbye to my Australian Shepherd, Zylo, earlier in the year. He was such a gentle soul and I miss him dearly.

What is your spirit animal?

The Honey Badger, or so I would like to believe. Small, but tough as nails. I’ve loved them ever since I first saw one in “The Gods Must Be Crazy II”, it just wouldn’t let go of that boot!

Now, let’s find out more about her vet practise.

Where is it based?

It’s based in Graaff-Reinet in the Eastern Cape.

Tell us about your patients?

We are a mixed practice where we can see anything from horses, livestock, wildlife to exotics, but we mostly see small animals.

What is the weirdest thing you have seen or treated a patient for?

While doing my Community Service year in Beaufort West a very young boy brought in his dog with the primary complaint being that he vomits when he sees dead dogs. One can’t help but wonder how many dead dogs he sees daily?

Let’s dig into the expert pet care advice.

Here are Dr. Burgers top tips for pet parents:

1. Follow your gut. If you must ask the question, “Do I need to take my pet to the vet?” the answer is most probably “yes”.

2. Vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate!

3. Regular vet visits are vital. Animals can’t tell us what is wrong, cats especially hide pain and illness extremely well. With regular vet checks your vet might be able to pick up on something before it is too late.

4. Caution is better than cure. If you can prevent an illness, don’t wait for it to arrive before you treat it.

5. Pet insurance is always a great idea. Besides being great for pet owners it also allows vets to practice better medicine and does wonders for our mental health. Being able to run more tests means we can more accurately diagnose your pet and treat them much more effectively.

Thank you Dr. Burger for helping pets get back on their paws, hooves and feet. offers pet insurance for dogs, cats and exotic pets. You cover the cuddles, we cover the expensive vet bills.

If you have a pet emergency, you can visit Dr. Burger at the Camdeboo Veterinary Clinic at 102 Somerset Street, Graaf-Reinet or reach out to her at 049 891 0900.