Posts Tagged ‘veterinarians’

Changing Times

Monday, February 21st, 2011
Almost 80% of new veterinary school graduates are now female. Fewer veterinarians are going into large animal practice.

Fewer veterinarians have practice ownership as a goal.

Many have speculated on how these changes will affect our profession overall. I can not speak for all veterinarians, or even all female veterinarians of course.  But I can, as a female veterinarian, give my perspective on some of the issues we as individuals and a profession have before us.

I will start with what I know best, my own present experience, and work backwards to when I first knew I would end up here, though I did not know exactly what this would look like.  Today, I am a female veterinarian in my thirties.  I graduated in 1998.  I am a wife and a mother of two daughters.  I love our profession.  I love my part time job and the family-friendly hours that I work.  I need you to understand that I am as hard-working and dedicated to veterinary medicine as you are.

I am a small animal veterinarian in the city.  I apologize for not being the buyer for the practice on which you are relying for retirement.  I apologize for not taking over the care of the large animal patients you now tend, or being there for the small town whose veterinary needs you have met for all these decades.  I need you to figure out a Plan B.

I am home with my newborn on maternity leave.  It is my first time away from full time veterinary work since I started my career.  I need to be included in team meetings and continuing education opportunities, and to be kept up to date on cases we treated together, and told about new cases you are seeing.

I am only a few years into practice and considering starting a family.  I need you to consider flexible schedules or job sharing or part time employment as I look forward to my new life as both a mother and a veterinarian.

I am a veterinary school graduate searching for my first job.  I do not expect you to ignore the possibility that I may decide to procreate at any time, but I do not want to be interrogated about my family plans or asked to make promises that have no bearing on whether I am the best person for the job you have available.  I need you to believe me when I say that I will give your practice my very best if you hire me.

I am a twelve-year-old girl in your waiting room with my sick friend in my lap.  I want to be like you when I grow up.  I need you to tell me that even though you do not know exactly what that will look like, you do know that it is possible.

I am the future of veterinary medicine.  We are the future of veterinary medicine. I need you to walk through this new chapter of our profession alongside me.  We will combine our strengths and work through the upcoming challenges, making our profession better than it has ever been.   Even though I do not know exactly what that will look like, I do know that it is possible.

This was first published at The Wagging Tail for Veterinary Professionals on March 31. 2010.

Signing Off…

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Losing Ebony has been difficult.  I am going to take a few weeks in Real Life and just deal with that.  And by deal with that I mean sleep.  And mope.  And take turns saying to Russ “Are you ok?” and “Do I look ok?” and bugging the girls about how they are doing.

Saturday I will post another short story about the human-animal bond.  These have been fun.  I think I will try to write them more often.  The Saturday Blog Hop is a great time to fit them in cuz they just take a second to read and you can hop to the next blog.

This one has Russ in it so I am going to get his permission before I post it.  I rarely ask his permission for anything, but I do try to ask people or at least give them a heads up if I am going to say anything other than “This person is super awesome,” which he is, by the way.  I figured I could at least extend him the same professional courtesy I extend to others.  And also, I try not to do anything Important without running it by Russ first.

We are a good team.  The hitch comes when we are both going through the same difficult time.  Still, it has been so good to have someone who loved Ebony like I did to be with.

Next up after the Short Story is that series of leadership articles written for veterinarians.  I am going to try to fit them all in before March.  I posted the first and my favorite at dvm360 today…

A Dramatic Wellness Exam

I will put the other seven here on Riley and James.

Then March 1 – Heartworm Free Celebration and hopefully by then I will be done with the Veterinary Economics 25 Leadership Books Series and can tell ya what I thought.  (So far I love it!  Less than two books to finish and the last one JUST came in the mail a few minutes ago – woo!)

Then hopefully I will be back to random celebration of preventative care in real time.  It’s what I love best about this site.  But when real life hits, you kind of get dragged through the hard times with me.  I love that you are here, but I do not want to share to the point of discouraging you.  Fuzzy and Wuzzy and Piggy and Ebony were such wonderful pets.  Losing them as little individual family members has been horrible, but having them pass away one after another in a matter of three months has been staggering.  I SO hope I have no news for you when I come back to sharing in real time mid-March.

Here is what I plan to say:*yawn*  Well, that’s better.  Gotta plant garlic and potatoes, then I will be back to write some super helpful veterinary preventative care information and stories for you…

Happy End of Winter…

Hope it is boring for you and your pets in the best possible ways.

What I am Doing This Week: Dreaming

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

I just wrote a blog post for dvm360 at the invitation of Veterinary Economics Editor Kristi Reimer.  Ok, so it was not a direct invitation, it was the introduction to the June issue of Veterinary Economics, sort of a “Draw This Turtle” for veterinarians.

I opened my June Veterinary Economics and read it from cover to cover like I always do.  The last thing I read (It was on the front page – I read magazines and journals from back to front – I think it’s a lefty thing) made me space off and dream for the rest of my lunch break.  Kristi said (to me!) “We’re on the lookout for user-generated content.”

Earlier in the year, Charity, who I work for at Carefresh, suggested I write a list of every company I would like to write with.  I already have my dream Mom-Veterinarian-Writer career.  Really, could it get any better??

I write HERE (which I LOVE – thanks Dave!!) and for (which I also love – thanks Jordy and Morgan!), Banfield occasionally asks for my input for their blog and journal (Thanks Nina!) and I had just accidently landed my dream job with Carefresh (Thanks Charity and Tom!)  Was it even OK to dream bigger?

But I do everything Charity tells me to do.  So I started writing out my dream list.  And at the very top of my list was dvm360-Advanstar Communications.  They are the team behind most of my favorite veterinary journals.  I knew it was just a dream, but sometimes dreams can become Real Life.  And writing lists is fun.

Thank YOU for coming with me on this crazy (good-crazy) adventure.  It has been fun, hasn’t it? : )And look, they let me post this…

Twitter for Veterinarians

It had to be said – When the world of veterinary medicine (eighty thousand+ veterinarians) intersects with the world of twitter (six million+ tweeters), it is such an amazing thing.  It just is SO uncommon!  (Four hundred sixty-two veterinarians/hospitals on twitter by my count)  I wanted to make jumping into twitter easier for vets.  So I hope it does.  If you don’t see more veterinarians posting on twitter in the next month or so, assume they are, as always, busy preserving and saving lives, not that they are unable to figure out twitter, because now I hope they will be!