Giving Thanks: If I hadn’t become a veterinarian

thanksgiving dinnerLife constantly makes us question “what if.” If I hadn’t become a vet, where would I be and what would I be doing? A science teacher motivating high school students, or at least attempting to? A travel book writer backpacking across the globe for Frommer’s? A pediatrician calming the nerves of nervous parents? On this day of remembering thanks, I pause to contemplate how becoming a veterinarian has positively shaped my life.

If I hadn’t become a veterinarian, I (likely) would not have been able to take my dog with me to work everyday. This brings me so much joy and comfort, and it is her favorite too. Whenever there is a sad situation or a difficult client, puppy hugs and tail wags are my ultimate comfort.

I wanted to be a veterinarian for longer than I can remember, and I am grateful I had the support–and patience–of my parents, especially when I continuously brought home new strays.

If I wasn’t a vet, I wouldn’t have the knowledge and ins and outs of how to effectively and affordable navigate the corridors of the University healthcare system when Madison was diagnosed with cancer. We are all entitled to our own opinions of course, but Dr. Jed and I chose the course of a single-agent chemotherapy and radiation therapy. I know that some people may think this was extreme, but it what we felt was right for Madison, and above all, I am grateful we had the veterinary knowledge to watch for signs of her decline and decreased quality of life.  We stopped the aggressive treatment pretty early in the plan, but I know we did everything to keep her happy and healthy as long as she was meant to be here with us.  For us, it was right.  Everyone has to find their own pet health-care plan that they are comfortable with.

shar pei puppies

Say goodbye to bad days when these guys give you kisses!

To a more happy tune, I am grateful for all the wonderful pet owners and pets I get to meet. True, not everyone person, or pet, is a peach, but pet owners and pets on the whole are a great group of loving individuals and there definitely is a part of all animal health jobs that is playing with puppies and kittens!

I am grateful that I have a trained skill set that can be used to help animals in need.  I find hours spent working in animal shelters very rewarding.  Anyone can volunteer, and I am thankful that I can participate in a way that directly impacts the number of pets that are spayed and neutered.  As far as nontraditional volunteering goes, I am grateful Dr. Jed and I have this new platform to help reach pet owners and collect donations for charity.  We raised over $500 for our blogathon for the National Mill Dog Rescue, and it was a truly awesome feeling to be able to help.

kangarooIf I hadn’t become a veterinarian, I think I would get bored! We get to do cool surgeries, interpret x-rays, work up interesting medical cases, cure cancer, treat kangaroos of oral infections, use a dart gun to knock out tigers, and comfort pet owners when they need it most. Our jobs are different everyday, and I enjoy helping pets and their owners in a number of different ways.

Without my DVM, we definitely would not be embarking on this great adventure. One of our core goals at VetLIVE is to lower the barriers to healthcare and accurate information for pet owners, improving things for both pets and their owners. I am grateful that we are doing this, as I passionately believe in its need.

If I hadn’t become a veterinarian, I wouldn’t have met my husband! Did you know how Dr. Jed and I met? He trained me in how to effectively lead and run a hospital, with both medical and financial responsibilities. Yes, I married my mentor. We didn’t start dating until I was on my own though. :-) I am incredibly grateful, more than words can say, that we found each other and for his love.

If I hadn’t become a veterinarian, I would have missed my calling. I am sure I could be satisfied in other professions, but being a veterinarian affects my life inside and outside of work in ways I am endlessly grateful for and truly fulfilled by.

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November 25, 2010 at 18:08

many folks and their pets are thankful that you became a veterinarian! you should consider writing as a 2nd career choice. another great job!

December 15, 2010 at 20:05

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March 11, 2011 at 01:32

2. Be consistent. Yes, I know I already said this, but consistency also extends to obedience commands. If you want your dog to learn to listen to obedience commands the first time they’re given, you need to be prepared to properly teach your dog to obey them the first time. This is most effectively accomplished if the initial foundation-level obedience you teach around the house is done off leash.