Welcome to XLVets Skillnet

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    Winner of the Best Learning & Development Organisation (Networks & Groups) at the 2016 IITD National Training Awards

    XLVets Skillnet was launched in June 2011. Training events organised by XLVets Skillnet are supported by Skillnets. Since our inception, we have had great engagement from the farming community, the veterinary supply chain and academia. XLVets recognised the problems faced by farmers and devised a strategy for addressing them through the delivery of relevant and practical training programmes that link back to an overall objective of prioritising disease prevention in livestock.

    Training and development is recognised as a critical success factor for future growth and competitiveness in many sectors. Farming is no different! Therefore, the role of those responsible for the delivery and management of training is of vital importance. XLVets Skillnet is delighted to be part of this story.

    For further information, please visit: www.skillnets.ie

    XLVets Skillnet offer a wide range of courses including CPD events for those working within the veterinary sector, we also provide short courses and longer term training for farmers. See our list of upcoming courses below; further information is available on the Skillnets website, click here.

    2018 Training Schedule:


    Event Details Trainer/Facilitator Date & Location
    9/10 Jan

    Large Animal Vet Conference

    Day 1 - Hoof Signals Interactive Lecture & on-farm Workshop

    Day 2 - Post Mortems


    Bert Van NiejenHuis 


    Ben Strugnell

    Shearwater Hotel, Ballinasloe
    7/8 Feb

    Graduate Programme

    Day 1 - Equine 1 - Markings, Colic, Castrations, Dentistry and Lameness

    Day 2 - Sheep 1 - Fertility, Lambing & Caesarean Sections, Vaccinations, Dosing & Metabolic Diseases

    Donnagh McDonnell/Chris McGrath

    Nick Garvey/Conor Geraghty

    22 Mar Treatment of Canine Congestive Heart Failure Mike Martin Maldron Hotel, Portlaoise
    March Equine Nutrition & Hoofcare Philip McManus Ower Equine Centre, Galway
    25/26 Apr

    Graduate Programme

    Day 1 - Consultations

    Day 2 - In house testing - e.g. blood work, urinalysis, skin scraping

    Soft Tissue Surgery/OOH Emergencies - e.g. acute poisoning, seizing dogs, orthopaedics, nutrition

    Brian Faulkner


    Sean Coffey/Kieran O'Mahony

    May/June Social Media/Marketing Training Irish Business Training Ltd T.B.C.
    13/14 Jun

    Graduate Programme

    Day 1 - Bovine 4 - Mastitis, Milk Quality, Housing

    Day 2 - Communications - Communicating effectively with clients, etc.


    Jerry Crowley/Willie Buckley


    Michael Cox

    2/3 Aug

    Graduate Programme

    Day 1 - Equine 2 - Emergencies, Acute Trauma, Sedations & GA options

    Day 2 - Post Mortems - Techniques, Disease Investigation, Secondary Diseases


    Donal Lynch/Nick Garvey


    Ben Strugnell


    2018 Mentor Programmes  

    The objective of the XLVets Skillnet mentor programs is to enable livestock farmers achieve a higher level of insight in the following subject areas:

    Dairy herd health status – DairyMentor

    Respiratory disease – PneumoMentor and NasoMentor

    Livestock Nutrition – Mineral Mentor (Bovine and Sheep) & ForageMentor

    Parasitology – (FaecoMentor)

    Milk quality – MastiMentor

    Each program is tailored to the needs of the individual farm. The farmer receives a report, recommendations and implementation support with moving to a higher level of performance in the mentor program topic area.

    Canine Pruritus (Dermatology Training):

    XLVets Skillnet is currently working with its member veterinary practices on a research project on skin diseases commonly occurring in dogs and the efficacy of alternative treatment approaches. The findings of the study will be used to inform a training event in October 2018. More details to follow.

    2017 Training Schedule
    5 Jan Farmskills Cow Signals Martin Kavanagh/Kevin Meaney Clonmel
    18/19 Jan

    Large Animal Vet Conference

    Day 1 - Robotic Milking Systems

    Day 2 - Clinical examinations and herd audits

    Roger Blowey/Bas van Santen Horse & Jockey Hotel
    23 Jan Farmskills Cow Signals Martin Kavanagh/Sean O Sullivan Castleisalnd, Kerry
    27 Jan Farmskills Cow Signals MartinKavanagh/Patrick Clerkin Cavan
    1 Feb Farmskills Cow Signals MartinKavanagh/Tom Julian Farm of Michael Ryan, Ballydine, Cashel, Tipperary
    2 Feb Pet Health Plans Alan Aherne Clonmel, Tipperary
    8 Feb Farmskills Cow Signals Martin Kavanagh/Donal Flynn Farm of Seamus Brennan, correal, Furety, Roscommon
    15 Feb Vaccinations & Parasites Shane Mc Guckin Wexford
    22 Feb Sheep and Cattle Nutrition Nick Garvey Donegal Vet Clinic
    1 Mar Sheep and Cattle Nutrition Nick Garvey Donegal Vet Clinic
    15 Mar SA Anesthesia - Vet Nurses Dr Lynne Hughes Belfield, UCD
    21 Mar Small Animal Joint Supplements TBC Bandon, Cork
    7 Apr Canine Vaccinations & Dermatology NIck Garvey Donegal
    11 Apr Farmskills Herd Fertility Kieran  O Mahony Ballykisteen Hotel, Tipperary
    12 Apr Farmskills Herd Fertility Shane Mc Guckin Farm of Jim Higgns, Gorey, Wexford
    13 Apr Farmskills Herd Fertility Kevin Meaney Farm of Denis Corcoran, Clonmel, Tipperary
    25 Apr VetSkills AMR Reduction of Antibiotic use on farms - The Dutch Perspective Tine Van Werven Horse & Jockey, Thurles
    27 Apr DIY Artificial Insemination Conor Geraghty Mountbellew, Galway
    2 May Summer Control of Parasites - Cattle Nick Garvey Donegal Town
    3 May Summer Control of Parasites - Cattle NIck Garvey Ballyshannon, Donegal
    3 May Summer Control of Parasites - Cattle Nick Garvey Cliffoney, Sligo
    11 May Disbudding Young Calves Conor Geraghty Galway
    18 May Bovine Reproduction & Ultrasound Scanning Donal Lynch/Conor Geraghty Shearwater Hotel, Ballinasloe, Galway
    1 June Sampling in Veterinary Dermatology Vanessa Schmidt Clonmel, Tipperary
    8 June Disbudding Young Calves Conor Geraghty Galway
    21 June VetSkills - Anthelmintic Resistance in sheep in Ireland today Niall Jackson Athlone Springs Hotel
    22 June Hoof Trimming/Lameness Donal Lynch Rath, Offaly
    29 June VetSkills Dairy Cow Nutrition Finbar Mulligan Tullamore Court Hotel
    August VetSkills BBSE Donal Murphy Green Isle Hotel, Newlands Cross, Dublin
    7 Aug Farmskills Lameness Neil Chesterton Farm of Tom Browne, Killeagh, Cork
    8 Aug Farmskills Lameness Neil Chesterton Kilmacthomas, Waterford
    9 Aug VetSkills Lameness Neil Chesterton Teagasc, Moorepark, Fermoy, Cork
    30 Aug, 20, 21, 27 Sept Certificate in Training Delivery and Evaluation (Formally Train the Trainer Fetac Level 6) MusterHR Associates Ltd Louis Fitzgerald Hotel, Newlands Cross, Dublin
    11 Sept Profitability in a high input output herd Jerry Crowley Lyons Estate, Kildare
    14 Sept Train the Trainer Refresher Michael Cox Maldron, Portlaoise
    23 Sept VetSkills Case Study  - Clinical Cases for new and recent veterinary graduates Various Hotel Kilkenny
    27 Sept Emergency & Critical Care of Exotics Niall Curran Killurin, Tullamore
    4 Oct XLVets Veterinary Graduate Programme Various Various
    5 Oct Excellence in Communications IBT Various locations
    8 Nov Graduate Mentor Programme Launch Various Room 115, UCD
    8 Nov LA Clinical Case Study Various TBC
    9 Nov VetSkills Dairy Cow Nutrition Day 2 Finbar Mulligan Radisson St Helens, Dublin

    FarmSkills program covering:

    • Calf Rearing - Birth to weaning
    • Feeding the high yielding dairy cow
    • Heifer rearing - weaning to first calving
    • Herd fertility - Dairy/Beef farms
    • Johne's disease control
    • Locomotion and foot trimming
    • Milk quality control
    • Practical lambing
    • Perparation for calving
    • Safe and effective use of veterinary medicine
    • Controlling sheep lameness

    More topics available on request

    More information here

    XLVets Skillnet Training Panel Members TBC

    Business Growth

    Business Leadership


    Lean Business

    Management Team

    Postgraduate IMI Diploma in Leadership

    Postgraduate IMI Diploma in Management

    Postgraduate Diploma in Strategy and Innovation

    ManagementWorks Various Locations







    About Skillnets

    Skillnets actively supports and works with businesses in Ireland to address their current and future skills needs. We fund groups of companies in the same region/sector, and with similar training needs, through training networks that deliver subsidised training to Irish businesses.

    We fund training networks in a range of sectors and/or regions around Ireland that primarily provide training to member companies and their employees, as well as training to eligible unemployed people.

    Employer needs are addressed through both the preservation and growth of jobs, focusing on skills to maintain businesses and protect jobs as well as the enhancement of new skills to create new jobs.

    The needs of unemployed people are addressed through activation and conversion by focusing on integrated training with employees and dedicated conversion courses and work placement in areas of employment potential.

    Skillnets is funded from the National Training Fund (NTF) through the Department of Education and Skills (DES).

    We are always delighted to hear from people who feel they will benefit from attending our events. XLVet Skillnet events are open to non-XLVet Skillnet members and are free of charge to eligible job seekers. Please read the eligibility criteria for job seekers. Direct your enquiries to the XLVets office at 061 381505 or by email to denise.duggan@xlvets.ie.

    The XLVets Skillnet is a non-profit, industry led network for training businesses in the veterinary and animal health sector in Ireland. XLVets Skillnet is funded by member companies and the Training Networks Programme, an initiative of Skillnets Ltd. funded from the National Training fund through the Department of Education and Skills.  Please visit www.skillnets.ie for more information.