011 887 8158
  • Welcome to Birnam Vet

    Scientific care with a gentle touch


Scientific care with a gentle touch

Welcome to the Birnam Vet website. If you are looking for high quality veterinary services in the Illovo, Melrose, Rosebank, Birnam or adjacent areas of Johannesburg, look no further. Birnam Veterinary Clinic has been serving the community living in this area for over sixty years with dedication and a high standard of veterinary care. We are one of the oldest veterinary practices in South Africa and we specialise in the treatment and care of your four legged family pets. At Birnam Vet we aim to provide you and your family pets with a pleasant experience from the moment you walk through the reception door.

We work on an appointment system to minimise the stress of a full waiting room. Contact our friendly, Eduvet trained receptionists to make an appointment to see Dr Jaco Viljoen, our resident veterinarian.

For a full list of the services offered at Birnam Vet, please go to our services page.

About Us

At Birnam Veterinary Clinic we take our values and principles seriously and willingly share them with you.

  1. Birnam Veterinary Clinic will always strive to ensure that the veterinary services and products we provide as well as the support that underwrites it will always be of a first world standard, and will measure up to the best veterinary practices internationally.
  2. At Birnam Veterinary Clinic we strive to be a practice with a warm and friendly atmosphere. We want to get to know and welcome our clients and their pets by name, where they become friends for life.
  3. We celebrate the human-animal bond, share in the care of our clients’ pets and the enjoyment animals bring to humans.
  4. The health and well-being of our patients is our highest priority.
  5. At Birnam Veterinary Clinic  we run a clean, hygienic and well maintained practice.
  1. Our clients’ concerns and complaints are dealt with and rectified immediately. We strive to ensure that clients are looked after to the very best of our ability.
  2. Ongoing training for all our staff is the way in which we will continuously strive to add value to our clients’ and their pets’ lives. While our staff grows in a happy environment, they will care better for our patients and work harder to please their owners.
  3. Our business is nothing without a strong team. We communicate with our staff to ensure they know their importance to the team, and ensure they understand their role in caring for our patients.
  4. Our drive to grow always takes precedence over any resistance to change.


View some of the services we offer

Services Overview

At Birnam Veterinary Clinic we strive to adhere to the highest quality standard of veterinary care. If we are unable to make a diagnosis or provide care within our scope of practice as a general veterinary practice, we will refer you and your pet to the best veterinary specialists available. We are attached to our patients as if they were our own pets and only the best veterinary care will do. Our veterinary staff take as much time as possible in the consulting room to fully explain your pet’s condition and treatment with costs involved to you, the owner, and where possible use visual aids to make sure you understand your pet’s condition and treatment.

Our approach

“A scientific approach with a gentle touch”

We approach each case in such a way that the best diagnosis and treatment can be effected whilst keeping the patient’s comfort in mind.

  • General veterinary medical consultations

    We provide consultations, treatment and advice to suit your pet’s needs no matter the life stage or concern.

  • Soft tissue surgery

    In our endeavour to provide you with first world veterinary services, we obtained new surgical equipment as well as a new anaesthetic machine.

  • Preventative Care

    Prevention is better than treatment is a philosophy that we subscribe to. We offer various treatments with preventative care in mind.

  • X-ray facilities

    Our new digital x-ray facility on site at Birnam Veterinary Clinic means we can do emergency and routine x-rays immediately.

  • In House Laboratory

    Our slogan, scientific care with a gentle touch, sums up our need for accurate and rapid results, to provide the correct diagnosis and treatment.

  • Bathing & Grooming

    We all love to cuddle with our pets but sometimes it can be rather smelly and unpleasant! At Birnam Vet, we offer a bath and grooming service.

  • Premium Pet Food Sales

    We stock a wide range of premium pet food in an attempt to ensure continued good health in your family pet.

  • Vaccinations

    Vaccinations form a very important part in ensuring your pet’s good health and prevention of harmful diseases.

  • View Full Services List

    Take a look at some of the other services we offer at Birnam Veterinary Clinic.


Pet info

Need advise about pet care? Didn’t find what you need here?

Call our practice on 011 887 8158 and ask one of our receptionists or vets. 


  • My pet is battling to pass a stool Bowel movements - a serious situation

    Ever notice your dog or cat in a hunched-up position either in the garden or in their sandbox and just not being able to “come right” with passing whatever it is they want to pass? In cats and female dogs, the posture of the animal when passing stool and passing urine, is the same. It is therefore important to try and establish whether they are battling to pass a stool or alternatively if they are struggling to urinate. Both conditions may require veterinary attention and if the animal repeatedly hunches and strains with no apparent relief, it may be a sign that they need to see the vet.

    View Article
  • Celebrating good times with your pets What not to feed your pets during the festive season

    South Africans love to celebrate with food and drink as do many other cultures. Being part of the family, we like to include our pets in our celebrations and with the best of intentions may harm them if we feed them the same things we enjoy eating and drinking when we celebrate. This article highlight some of the food and drinks we as humans enjoy, which may be harmful and even deadly for our pets.

    View Article
  • I found a lump on my animal's skin. Is it cancer? Lumps and Bumps in your Pet

    Finding a lump or a bump in your pet which you have never noticed before, can cause serious worry for pet owners. This article will highlight what to watch out for, when to take your pet to the vet and the process veterinarians follow when approaching any lump found on a pet.

    Firstly, it is always important to remember that you can never tell how serious a mass on your pet is by simply feeling it and judging by its size. Dynamite can often come in small packages and some of the most aggressive skin cancers may present as a simple small raised area on the skin. Generally lumps on a cat tend to be more dangerous and they are not something to be ignored. All growths have to start small but may grow very rapidly. Lumps come in all shapes and sizes and for that reason it is always best to get any lump on the skin or underneath the skin checked by the veterinarian as soon as you discover it. This will provide peace of mind to you as an owner if it is simply a dermal cyst or a small wart-like growth, both of which will not cause any major health issues for your pet. Alternatively, if it is something more aggressive and dangerous, it is always better to start treatment as soon as possible. If it is determined to be a bad type of growth (malignant), the sooner it is diagnosed the better the prognosis for both removing it surgically or starting any other form of treatment.

    View Article
  • Can I, or my dogs or cats contract bird flu from my pet birds? Avian Influenza South Africa 2017

    The information provided here is not an official statement but is meant to provide some general information on bird flu because of the break out of bird flu in September 2017 in South Africa.

    Bird flu or Avian Influenza (AI) is a family of influenza viruses that mainly affect birds. They are named according to two proteins on the surface of the virus (Haemagglutinin and Neuraminidase). The only ones of commercial concern are the H1, H5 and H7 types. There are dangerous (HP or highly pathogenic) and LP (low pathogen) strains. So when you see someone talking about HPAI H5N8 that means the dangerous type of H5N8 avian influenza.

    View Article
  • I love the mean look a dog with cropped ears have Ear cropping in dogs - Why vets do not do it anymore

    Ear cropping in dogs was a procedure done by vets in the previous century whenever dog owners requested it. Cropping is the removal of part, or all, of the outer ear, or the pinnae (external visible flap) of the ear of an animal. Cropping the ears also involved taping the ears up after the surgery, to make the ears pointy.

    Why was ear cropping done in the past?

    Ear cropping was historically done on working dogs to reduce the risk of medical conditions like infections or haematoma. An othaematoma is when a small blood vessel in the ear bursts when dogs shake their heads (with ears flapping from side to side against the top and bottom of the dog’s head) and which causes the ear to “balloon” out with a blood-filled pocket in the ear. Although these initial reasons for doing cropping were sound, it turned into a cosmetic procedure over time and became more about “the looks” of the animal, rather than anything else. The surgical procedure of ear cropping was no longer done for functional reasons and was purely done for aesthetic reasons – “to give a dog that mean look”.

    View Article
  • View All Articles


Meet the people looking after your pet

  • Dr Jaco Viljoen

    Dr Viljoen joined us at the beginning of 2016.  He is our resident vet and he absolutely loves animals...
  • Lorraine Johnson

    Lorraine started at Birnam Vet in April 2017 as a temporary receptionist, but she has since become permanent.  She absolutely loves animals and have...
  • Michael Seshabela

    Michael started with us in November 2017, although he has been working as a groomer/veterinary orderly for 30 years already!  He is a husband and...
  • Bev Wides

    Bev has been working at Birnam Veterinary Clinic since 2000 with Dr Price then Dr Wessels.  Bev’s has retired the end of August 2017 but still...
  • Desiré van Zyl

    Desiré van Zyl is the new morning Receptionist at Birnam Vet.  She joined us in November 2015 and has a passion for working with animals...
  • Alpheus Mvelase

    Alpheus started working with Dr Rick Price in 1997 and continued working with Dr Wessels when he took over the practice. We are very happy Alpheus is...
  • Elia Madula

    Elia is a firm favourite with clients and animals alike at Birnam Veterinary Clinic. He has worked at the clinic since 1995. He has completed the F10...
  • Evelyn Sibanyoni

    Evelyn started working at Birnam Veterinary Clinic in 1992 as a groomer and is well known and loved by the clients and their pets! We are very...
  • Goodness Msibi

    Goodness started working at Birnam Veterinary Clinic in 2010 as a veterinary assistant and now works with Evelyn in the Grooming parlour. She has a...


View some of our latest news, updates on the practice and all things related to your pet.

  • Missing cat


  • Corlett City Veterinary Hospital take over


  • Free Rabies Vaccinations


  • 2 Maltese gets new home


  • Lost dog near Forrest Town


  • The Story of Ginger


  • What types of bones are safe to give my dog?


  • Browse All Articles

Birnam Shop Image

Get in touch with us

42 Fort Street (c/o Fort Street and Delta Road), Birnam, Johannesburg, 2196
011 887 8158/9
011 887 1299

Consulting Hours

* Mon – Fri

07:30 – 11:00 &
15:00 – 18:30

* Saturdays

08:00 – 13:00



Public Holidays



* Consultations Mon – Sat are by appointment

Shop Hours

Mon – Fri

07:30 – 18:30


08:00 – 13:00



Public Holidays