Whether good or bad, these are the most buzzed about stories of 2015 in the veterinarian community!
5. The Veterinary Confessionals Project
This year continued to increase awareness around the fact that vet professionals are at a higher risk for suicide and depression. This project, started by then senior vet student Dr. Hilal Dogan, was created as a way to give veterinary professionals a way to express their aggravations or concerns in an anonymous way.
She tried it at her school in New Zealand and was a welcomed concept where people could write a confession and place in a submission box. Since it was a hit, you can now find Vet Confessionals at many of the U.S. conferences, including SAVMA and NAVC, and the project has now joined forces with DVM360. Yes, even you may post a confessional! These submissions are anonymously posted on the website.
4. U.C. Davis Treats Animals Burned by Wildfires
Two Northern California wildfires badly burned dozens of pets that were treated at University of California, Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital this past September. They received over 40 cats, 4 horses, 2 pigs, 2 chickens, a dog and a goat.
Animals are often lost or escape during fire evacuations. Many of the animals go unclaimed if they cannot be identified by a microchip or if the family is not searching for them; photos were put up on the UC Davis Facebook page.
(Photo used with permission credit to Sacramento Bee and Randy Pench.)
3. Vet shoots Cat with Arrow
Not good publicity, but hard to forget the story of Texas veterinarian Kristen Lindsey shooting a cat (known as Tiger) with her bow and arrow and her posting photos of it on Facebook.
It caused major outcry from the public and veterinary community. Kristen was fired from her then job but continues to hold an active license in the state despite the ongoing petitions to have her license revoked.
2. Cat Receives Prosthetic Legs
Vincent, a 3-year old MN DSH was fitted with prosthetic titanium alloy legs at the Lloyd Veterinary Medical Center at Iowa State University.
Vincent had been brought to a shelter in Nevada with severe abnormalities in his back legs. A woman who worked at the shelter has a daughter who introduced Vincent to Dr. Mary Sarah Berg who thought that prosthetics would be his best chance for a normal life.
Dr. Bergh worked to develop these femur implants. He is stable and walking great at this time! Hopefully Vincent will help to advance the idea of prosthetics for animals in vet medicine.
(Photo used with permission and credit to Christopher Gannon.)
1. Bird Flu Pandemic
This year marks the worst bird flu outbreak in U.S. history. This animal health emergency caused the death of more than 48 million birds, mostly chickens and turkeys, infected with the H5N2 virus.
The disease devastated more than 200 premises in 15 states. As of November 18th, the USDA reported to the World Organization for Animal Health that all cases in commercial poultry have been resolved and that the US is once again avian influenza free.
Anyone involved in poultry production, whether backyard breeders or commercial operations should continue to review their biosecurity activities and report sick birds to state and federal officials.
Ongoing tests are being performed in wild migratory bird populations, which this month confirmed the presence of the virus in a wild duck. Samples are being collected from hunter-harvested birds and wild bird mortalities through next summer.
Staying Physically & Mentally Fit Through Vet School
Vet school is undoubtedly one of the busiest and most stressful times in your life. With all that you’ve got going on, it’s important to stay physically healthy and mentally sharp to get you through it all. Here are some tips to help you stay healthy.
- Simple steps for staying in shape
- How to overcome the feeling of sleep deprivation
- Improve those eating habits
- ...and more!