Why do I do what I do? (ie why keep being a vet?)

I have been a vet now for 10 years! Wow! Its hard to believe. Sometimes it feels like its been longer and sometimes it feels like I just graduated yesterday.

Some days, like today, are really hard to get through. Things just don’t go right. I can’t figure out what is wrong with the horse…..or even, I DO figure out what is wrong but its something that I just can not fix. And sometimes, I even worry that I have made things worse for my patient rather than better as I try to treat them. It can be mentally and emotionally exhausting. It can sometimes be thankless. It takes you away from your family, it keeps you up at night. So why do I keep doing this job?

For me, right now, one particular family and their horses stand out as the prime example of how awesome this job can be. The Stephes family have been clients of ours for a long time. We have seen them through injury and illness in the past but this summer, in particular was hard. This July, the Stephes family faced the fact that 3 of their horses became ill with a very dangerous and sometimes deadly disease called Potomac Horse Fever. You can read more about it here- http://www.weitzequine.com/potomac-horse-fever/

This happened, despite the fact that we had vaccinated their horses (the PHF vaccine can help with severity of disease but does not completely prevent it). This happened in the middle of their barrel racing season. This happened when their 2 daughters were supposed to be having a fun summer riding their horses. They had a lot to face and a lot to be scared about……but everyday that myself or one of the other vets was there to treat the horses, both young girls were out there to help. They mixed buckets of medication and helped me tube the horses. They iced their feet and checked their temperatures multiple times per day. And when one horse needed further care at a hospital, they loaded her up and took her. The sacrifices of time and energy and worry on their part were immense. The family worked together with us to get these horses better and they expressed thanks to us every day that we came out to help them. After a tough few weeks, thankfully, all the horses have recovered.

Olivia Stephes and her horse Scotch

And they are getting back to doing what they love. Seeing the photos of the Stephes’ girls training and riding their horses warm my heart. They let me know that what I do is important….even when there are tough days and tough cases.

Thanks for reading my blog today…..And thanks for being great horse owners!

Discuss: “Why do I do what I do? (ie why keep being a vet?)”

  1. August 9, 2017 at 4:59 pm #

    wonderful story and it’s so nice to hear some good news after all you and the family have been through.

    Posted by Margaret Molinaro
  2. August 10, 2017 at 6:50 am #

    Thank you for your time and expertise, on every call!

    Posted by Chaz Pagel
  3. August 10, 2017 at 4:51 pm #

    These storries are great to hear. Thanks for sharing and thank you and everyone at Weitz for exceptional care and always being there – for my horses and me too!

    Posted by Linda Hansen

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