Twenty short years ago, there were few options when a pet was diagnosed with cancer. But today, veterinary cancer treatment continues to make huge advancements, as conditions that were not treatable then, can be sent into remission today.

The future looks bright

The treatment regimens of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery are also much kinder now than they were then (and getting better all the time), which is good news for everyone involved.

While a diagnosis of cancer is both physically and emotionally draining, it is no longer hopeless. In fact, it can be beaten and/or controlled for long periods of time, with a good quality of life, much like many other chronic incurable diseases, and these days it often is. At Paragon Veterinary Referrals we will be there every step of the way, walking you through options for your pet. We will work with your vet to help make sound treatment decisions and compassionately guiding owners through what will likely be a very challenging time.

A multi-pronged attack on cancer

Cancer can be one of the most complex and difficult diseases to diagnose and treat, not to mention emotionally draining on every level for both you and your pet. Our oncology department leads the attack against your pet’s cancer, coming at it from all sides with traditional therapies like surgery, chemotherapy and radiation to more advanced approaches like immunotherapy, gene-therapy and molecular targeted therapy, to provide the best possible outcomes and prognoses.

Quality of life is critical to you, your pet, and to us, which is why we consider both pain management as well as your psychological and social needs when treating your pet’s cancer. In fact, we work with a team for vets, nurses and staff to provide the best possible care for you and your pet.

Our Oncology Team

Paragon Veterinary Referrals was founded on the belief that specialists, family, veterinary surgeons, and pet owners working together can do more for our patients than any of us working alone. That dedication to collaboration burns brightly today throughout Paragon. Our elite Oncology team works side-by-side with you and your primary care vet throughout diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing care. When another opinion is needed from an Internal medic, Surgeon, Cardiologist, Criticalist, Anaesthetist, Neurologist, and/or Imager, those colleagues are right across the hall, ready to lend their expertise to help solve your patient’s problems. Compassionate and comprehensive cancer diagnosis, treatment, and care are our prime objectives.

Please give us the opportunity to discuss your pet’s disease process and help you come to a decision about your pet’s future, whether it be to treat or not to treat. If you would like to talk to us about what is possible please ask your vet about referral to Paragon Referrals. We

consider success to be the improvement and/or maintenance of your pet’s quality of life for as long as possible, within the limits that you feel are appropriate for you and your pet.

Radiation therapy now at Paragon

Chosen by leading clinicians and specialists around the world, Xstrahl radiotherapy systems are designed for the treatment of skin cancer, dermatological disorders, certain types of benign disease and some palliative care.

Superficial radiotherapy is particularly useful for treating some types of skin cancer and is often preferable to surgery and can deliver excellent outcomes, including pain management for numerous conditions.   

Thanks to its leading design, treatment using the Xstrahl 100 provides an all-round positive experience for every patient. The flexibility of the unit means that the treatment is less stressful from the outset and thanks to its unique design the treatment is pain-free. The low energy means pinpoint accuracy, so healthy skin isn’t affected. The fast treatment means a large reduction in time and impact on the patient’s day-to-day life, whilst providing a highly effective treatment for superficial skin conditions.

The unit’s small footprint enables installation in a compact space, and its mobility makes for better use of space within the treatment room. Its low energy and short exposure times means the treatment room requires less shielding compared to a high energy linear accelerator.

The range of movement in the treatment arm enables smooth adjustment and easy set up for each treatment field. Its flexibility makes it particularly suited for treating multiple lesions that are difficult to access, such as the head and neck, without changing patient positioning.

The Xstrahl radiotherapy systems help us to respond to the growing treatment demand for radiation and we treat these patients on an outpatient basis, helping us to reduce surgical and hospitalisation costs. The Xstrahl technology is easy to use and helps to deliver safe and effective radiotherapy to our animal patients.

Currently, there is a significant shortfall of access to and investment in radiotherapy treatments for pets in the UK. The rising cancer incidence is driving an increased demand for radiotherapy, which is a highly cost effective and clinically effective cancer treatment. Additional options are required to meet this increased need.

Ever-increasing demand for radiotherapy services. In cancer alone, a rising incidence of the disease, rapidly evolving therapies and new indications for treatment, are all driving demand. Xstrahl superficial and orthovoltage radiation therapy systems can help improve treatment availability, the level of care, and range of treatment options for patients quickly, simply and affordably.

Patient safety is our priority. All Xstrahl medical systems have CE, FDA and Health Canada Clearance and are certified to ISO 13485

Superficial (low energy x-rays <100Kv) radiation therapy (SRT) has been available for decades.

SRT often is a superior form of external beam radiation therapy in its ability to minimise normal tissue exposure to radiation.

SRT often provides a quicker, easier, cheaper, and non-invasive alternative for superficial tumours, especially in geriatric patients where surgery is not always an option.

Makes radiation therapy more easily available, and for a large number of cases, it will provide a more viable option for clients, who often decide against radiotherapy, purely due to cost, time and distance consideration, to the nearest radiotherapy centres.

Oncology Team

Dr Rodney Ayl

BSc BVSc MRCVS Diplomate ACVIM (Oncology) Diplomate ACVR (Radiation Oncology)
Oncology Specialist

Rodney grew up in Zimbabwe and graduated from the Faculty of Veterinary Science of the University of Pretoria in South Africa in 1985. He practiced large animal medicine in Zimbabwe before coming to the USA in 1985. He did a small animal internship at the Animal Medical Center in Manhattan, NY, before he moved on to The Ohio State University for his residency in medical oncology in 1989. He achieved Board Certification in medical oncology in 1994, and in radiation oncology in 2000.

Rodney has developed oncology departments and provided consulting services, in various practices and laboratories, and has lectured throughout the United States and abroad on various oncologic topics. He has authored and co-authored a number of articles and other publications and conducted research on the phenomenon of multi-drug resistance, mast cell tumour and oral melanoma. He had been in private referral, medical and radiation, oncology practice in Southern California since 1993 until he returned to the UK in April 2019. He specializes in the application of multi-modality therapy protocols for the treatment of cancer in animals, with a patient and client directed approach.


Ben Safrany

BVetMed PgC in Small Animal Medicine MRCVS
Internal Medic – ECVIM Resident in Internal Medicine

Ben graduated from the Royal Veterinary College in 2010. After spending two years in mixed practice he moved to a busy small animal hospital in Nottinghamshire where he spent the next five years. During this time he developed a keen interest in internal medicine and gained a certificate in small animal medicine in 2015. He is interested in all areas of internal medicine.

Outside work Ben enjoys climbing, running and spending time with his dog.


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