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Vet Gazette

Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine eNewsletter

Handbags for Scholarships!

April 15th, 2014

Dog_PurseIf you’ve got a gently used or new purse that’s just taking up room in your closet, donate it to raise money for CVM scholarships! Kelley Marchbanks, Development Director for the college is organizing a silent auction of handbags, wallets, backpacks, and laptop bags and needs donations!

Bring your new or gently used gear to the Dean’s office in Magruder Hall before Saturday, May 2nd. If you plan to attend Pet Day, you can drop off your donation at the Scholarship Purse booth in front of Magruder before 10 am on May 3rd.

Shelter Medicine Students Offer Health Care Equity

April 15th, 2014
Kristina Raum, Caitlin McLagan, Jared Sharp and Jake Tidwell volunteered their Saturday to help homeless and low-income pets.

Kristina Raum, Caitlin McLagan, Jared Sharp, Kristen Hinatsu, and Jake Tidwell volunteered their Saturday to help homeless and low-income pets.

Every year at O’Bryant Park Square in the heart of downtown Portland,  the students of Oregon Health & Science University hold a Health Care Equity Fair. Volunteers from a variety of health care professions donate their time to provide free health screenings, dental work, chronic illness education, and other services to homeless and low-income community members. For the past three years, CVM students from the Shelter Medicine Club have also volunteered their time to offer health screening and basic care to low-income and homeless pets.

On Sunday, April 6th, a team of five third-year vet students (Caitlin McLagan, Kristen Hinatsu, Jared Sharp, Jake Tidwell, and Kristina Raum), joined Portland veterinarian Robin Sechrest to offer physical exams and provide vaccines like distemper/parvo for dogs, upper respiratory for cats, and rabies for both. They also performed nail trims and ear cleaning, and gave basic health care advice.

“The owners were phenomenal and clearly had the interests of their companions at heart,” says McLagan. “Most animals were in good condition, but we did see a number of skin conditions. There was a lot of flea allergy dermatitis. Fortunately we were able to send clients home with several months’ worth of flea/tick treatment for their pets.”

The team treated 23 animals, mostly dogs and a few cats.  “As veterinary students, this type of experience is a hugely gratifying aspect of our education and profession,” says McLagan. “Not only does working out in the community give us valuable perspective about the challenges faced by many people (and animals) in our society, but it gives us the opportunity to hone crucial skills needed in our day-to-day lives as veterinarians. These include communication, medical and technical competency, and flexibility.”

One goal of the Shelter Medicine Club is to provide veterinary preventive medicine to community members that may not otherwise be able to access it. This supports the college mission to promote the  human-animal bond, protect public health, and let the world know that veterinarians are caring and empathic professionals. “Based on the overwhelmingly positive feedback of event organizers, health care students, volunteers, and clients, we succeeded in representing our profession as such,” says McLagan.

Although they had to drive to Portland and cope with the crazy downtown parking situation, the Shelter Medicine Club volunteers enjoyed their day in the city. “I most enjoyed the ability to get out of the classroom and lab, and apply veterinary medicine to real world situations where the benefits of what we do are acutely noticeable,” says McLagan. “Hearing clients talk about their beloved pet has a particularly strong impact when they tell you this pet is literally all they have of value to them in the world. It’s a real privilege and an honour to be able to assist people to protect their pet’s health and well being as best we can.”


Llamas, and Ferrets, and Rabbits, Oh My!

April 11th, 2014

costumecontestLast year’s Pet Costume Contest at OSU Pet Day was so doggone much fun, we’re doing it again!

All kinds of animals in all kinds of costumes are welcome.  There are great prizes for first, second and third place winners PLUS everyone who enters gets a fun treat.

The show starts at 1 pm on Saturday, May 3rd. If you want to enter the contest, register online – it’s only $5!

Family Friendly Bike Ride Raises Money For Low Income People and Pets

April 11th, 2014

RHVJoin CVM students, faculty and friends for the annual Ride the Heart of the Valley bike ride on Saturday, April 26th.

There are three routes for riders of all skill levels and plenty of sociable rest stops along the way. All proceeds are divided between the Olive Britt Fund, which supports emergency care for pets from low income families at the OSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital, and the Johnson Dental Clinic at the Boys & Girls Club of Corvallis.

For ride routes, start times and registration, visit www.ridetheheartofthevalley.com.

Iditarod Dream Comes True for VTH Technician

March 31st, 2014

SaraShort_dogAs a Certified Veterinary Technician in the OSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital, Sara Short sees dogs of all kinds in the course of an average work day, and because many of these pets have been referred by family veterinarians, they are often seriously ill or injured. Last month, Short had an opportunity to work with dogs at the other end of the health spectrum: Iditarod athletes.

Shorts’ fascination with the Iditarod began when she was growing up in Anchorage, Alaska. Her father took her to the race almost every year. “My dad was military and the military usually sponsors one of the mushers. It was always a thing that we did together,” she says.

After becoming a veterinary technician, she had an opportunity to get up close with Iditarod sled dogs when she became friends with a client who raised them. “We went out a couple of times for different training days: hooking them all up to their harnesses and letting them run with a cart,” she says. “It sparked my interest and I started to build my experience with them.”

The Iditarod race is a big deal in Alaska. Tourists and competitors come from all over the world to participate. Mushers spend many years and thousands of dollars developing their dog teams, and pay a minimum of $3,000 just to register for the race. The Iditarod Trail Committee employs a staff of ten year-round staff, including a head veterinary technician who supervises a handful of selected volunteer CVTs. This group of technicians is responsible for collecting pre-race blood work and ECG information on more than a thousand dogs. Sara Short’s dream was to join their ranks.

“I was very persistent,” she says. “I had gone through the website and applied as a volunteer. I did that three times in a row and never got picked. Then when I came to OSU, everyone told me ‘If you want to get into the Iditarod, talk to Dr. McKenzie.’” Dr. Erica McKenzie is a sport medicine specialist who has conducted research on Iditarod sled dogs. She suggested Short contact Dr. Stuart Nelson, the head veterinarian for the race. “I called him and he set me up for a phone interview with the head technician.” Short must have had a good interview because the head technician called her the next day and offered her the job. “I booked my plane ticket right away and requested all the time off,” says Short.

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Seminar on Modern Agriculture

March 31st, 2014

cow_faceDr. Gary Sides, a beef nutritionist with Zoetis will present “Defending Modern Agriculture in a Facebook Culture” on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, Noon – 1 p.m., Magruder Hall, Room 102.. Dr. Sides has a Ph.D. in ruminant physiology and nutrition, and twenty years experience in livestock physiology, nutrition, and production. He will speak on the challenges of feeding the world and current attitudes toward agriculture, and explore some of the myths surrounding beef in the human diet.