Sonja's interest in dairy cows is in her blood as her family have been dairy farmers for generations in Switzerland and in Leeston since 1997. After vet school, she spent eight years tending to cows in the Waikato. There was plenty to do with outbreaks of Theileria, Facial Eczema, Zinc toxicities, and Phosphorous deficiency anaemias. During this time she enjoyed working with her farmers to make long-term improvements in animal and human welfare. She was known to get stuck in any time someone mentioned phrases like six-week in-calf rate, anti-microbial stewardship, data analysis, diet composition or biosecurity plans. There she met her husband Cameron, a refrigeration engineer and mad golfer. They played in the same rock band and their family expanded when an abandoned cat decided to join them at a practice one night. They named her "Roadie".
They all moved to Canterbury in January 2019, lured by the superior ski-fields and the chance to go support a champion super rugby team. They settled on living in Rolleston because of the great sushi and its close proximity to Weedon's golf course. Roadie appreciates the friendlier nature of the suburban cats compared to the feral farm cats she battled with up north.
Sonja is enjoying her time at SRVS so far, getting to know the locals on-farm and at the Friday touch tourny.