Displaying items by tag: Vets

Talkin' Pets Radio

March 19, 2022

Host - Jon Patch

Co-Host - Jillyn Sidlo

Producer - Devin Leech

Network Producer - Ben Boquist /Kevin

Special Guest - SEASON 3 PREMIERE CRITTER FIXERS: COUNTRY VETS ON 3/26 AT 9/8c, AND HEARTLAND DOCS SEASON PREMIERE on 4/23 AT 10/9c Listen for the Critter Fixers as they join Jon and Talkin' Pets 3/19/22 at 5pm ET

 

 

 

 

CRITTER FIXERS: COUNTRY VETS

 

Dr. Terrence Ferguson

CRITTER FIXERS: COUNTRY VETS

Dr. Terrence Ferguson is the co-owner of Critter Fixer Veterinary Hospital. Growing up in rural Talbotton, Georgia, Dr. Ferguson discovered his caring nature for animals at a young age, bringing strays in off the streets and actually nursing a dog back to health after it had been hit by a car.

With his family’s encouragement, he embarked on a career in veterinary medicine long before college, spending his summers volunteering at local veterinary clinics. Dr. Ferguson received his undergraduate degree from Fort Valley State University and later earned his DVM from Tuskegee College of Veterinary Medicine.

After graduating, he formed a partnership with his best friend since college, Dr. Vernard Hodges, and nearly 20 years later, Critter Fixer Veterinary Hospital is still going strong. Dr. Ferguson is married with two kids and three dogs, and he trains and mentors athletes in the community. His daughter, Nicole, is studying Animal Science at Fort Valley State University, and his son, Terrence Junior, is a freshman at the University of Alabama where he plays football and study Sports Medicine.

 

Dr. Vernard Hodges

CRITTER FIXERS: COUNTRY VETS

Dr. Vernard Hodges is the co-owner of Critter Fixer Veterinary Hospital. Raised in Peach County, Georgia, Dr. Hodges grew up around lots of animals and developed a passion early on for understanding and helping them.

In the hopes of becoming the next Jacques Cousteau, Dr. Hodges pursued his undergraduate degree in fisheries biology from Fort Valley State University. But soon after graduating, Dr. Hodges realized his passion for animals expanded well beyond aquatic species, so he enrolled at the Tuskegee College of Veterinary Medicine and graduated in 1997 with his DVM.

From there, he partnered with his best friend and vet school classmate, Dr. Terrence “T” Ferguson, to open Critter Fixer Veterinary Hospital. Almost 20 years later, the hospital has expanded to two locations and treats over 20,000 animals every year.

Dr. Hodges has a 17-year-old son, V.J., and several animals, including four dogs, Alexis, Bane, Ghost and Koi; and a bearded dragon named Drake. He is very active in his community and mentors scores of area children through his nonprofit organization.

 

 

RALEIGH, NC (August 5, 2021) - The AKC Canine Health Foundation (CHF), a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the health of all dogs and their owners, announces that Dr. Cynthia Otto is the recipient of the 2021 Asa Mays, DVM Excellence in Canine Health Research Award.

Named for Dr. Asa Mays, a member of CHF’s first Board of Directors in 1995, the award is a biennial honor presented to a research investigator who demonstrates meritorious achievements in furthering the mission of identifying, characterizing, and treating canine disease and ailments. Stephanie A. Montgomery, DVM, PhD, DACVP, Chair of CHF’s Scientific Review Committee, will present the award during the 2021 AKC Canine Health Foundation National Parent Club Canine Health Conference on Saturday, August 14. The conference, sponsored by Purina, will follow a virtual format this year and features distinguished researchers presenting the latest medical and scientific advancements in canine health.

The cornerstone of Dr. Otto’s AKC Canine Health Foundation funded research has been the 9/11 Medical Surveillance Study, now in its 20th year. Since 2001, Dr. Otto has received almost $600,000 in funding to study the physical and behavioral consequences of search and rescue dog deployment to the 9/11 disaster sites. To date, the work has produced 11 peer-reviewed publications describing the short and long-term effects of deployment on toxicology, behavior, mortality, the dog-handler relationship, and more. Findings will help us protect not only the health and safety of search and rescue dogs, but provide valuable translational information benefitting the health of human handlers and first responders.

“Dr. Otto’s groundbreaking research and dedication to advancing the health of working dogs and their handlers exemplifies the AKC Canine Health Foundation’s mission and vision,” says Dr. Montgomery. “This One Health approach can accelerate medical discoveries that impact both species. We are honored to present Dr. Otto with this award and look forward to our continued collaboration to benefit the health of all dogs and their owners.”

Data analysis from the 9/11 Medical Surveillance Study is ongoing with funding through CHF Grant 02322: Analysis of the Health, Behavioral, and Longevity Data Collected in the 9/11 Medical Surveillance Longitudinal Study. This work is part of CHF’s $11.4M active research portfolio encompassing all aspects of canine health. View CHF’s Research Grants Portfolio at akcchf.org/portfolio.

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About CHF
Since 1995, the AKC Canine Health Foundation has leveraged the power of science to address the health needs of all dogs. With more than $62 million in funding to date, the Foundation provides grants for the highest quality canine health research and shares information on the discoveries that help prevent, treat and cure canine diseases. The Foundation meets and exceeds industry standards for fiscal responsibility, as demonstrated by their highest four-star Charity Navigator rating and GuideStar Platinum Seal of Transparency. Learn more at www.akcchf.org.

Alex Fox-Alvarez, D.V.M., an assistant professor of small animal surgery at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, has a reputation for taking innovative approaches to teaching.

So when COVID-19 safety measures implemented at UF meant fourth-year veterinary students were suddenly released from clinics on March 17 and faculty members needed to convert course content into an online format within one week, Fox-Alvarez turned a challenge into an opportunity for creative problem-solving.

 “I wanted to make sure that my rounds included the elements of clinics that students would miss out on while away from the UF Small Animal Hospital,” Fox-Alvarez said.

The list was long: There’d need to be client communication, taking a patient’s history, making a diagnostic plan and interpreting tests to determine the best next step in care. Skills typically learned by observation — including how to communicate findings to the client and develop plans for treatment and postoperative care, provide detailed surgical procedural explanations and even address ethical dilemmas — would need to be communicated by distance learning.

Fox-Alvarez reached for video, which he regularly used for surgical teaching during his residency training at UF and later as a faculty member. He scrambled to rework old surgery lectures into an online rounds format that would suffice to replicate the vast clinical experience for students over a relatively short period of time. When it soon became clear that students would remain away from clinics for longer than previously thought, his initial concept evolved into a platform that could deliver long-term online learning: Veterinary Isolated Clinical Education, or VICE, Rounds. 

 “I wanted to incorporate as many example case images and videos as possible so that students could have a more memorable experience with the case, which would hopefully help them understand the key points they would need to take away for use in practice,” he said. “I also wanted to make sure to include the experience of case rounds and discussing diseases and treatment options in a relaxed way in a small group with faculty.”

He created organized breaks in his initial rounds presentation to allow for discussion of key points immediately before they were illustrated in the slides, as well as worksheets for grading.

“These rounds are really fun to build and record, but doing a lecture well takes a lot of energy. It didn’t take long to realize what a monumental task creating a comprehensive online substitute for clinical education would be, especially in the face of the abrupt chaos falling upon all veterinary colleges at once,” he said.

“There was no way any one institution could do it alone, especially in a time-frame fast enough to benefit the students now. Fortunately, Vet Med is a small, tightknit and passionate profession and I knew there would be colleagues elsewhere who would also be interested in making and volunteering their recorded rounds topics to benefit educators and students in our shared community.”

Fox-Alvarez then set up all of the logistics online to get the crowd-sourced VICE Rounds operational, and sent the initial call for volunteers to two surgery listservs where it spread and grew organically from there.

Volunteers contribute topic- and case-based rounds for on-demand streaming across teaching institutions, decreasing the pressure on each university to develop its own free-standing, off-site clinical curricula while managing urgent clinical needs, Fox-Alvarez said. 

Currently, there have been 19 recorded rounds uploaded, with over 50 more topics in progress from veterinarians at 15 different participating universities, including one from Canada and five specialty private practices, including one from the United Kingdom. Within just two weeks of the first VICE Rounds, the initiative had garnered mentions in an American Veterinary Medical Association newsletter and on the Veterinary Information Network.

With the help of his wife, Stacey Fox-Alvarez, D.V.M., a third-year veterinary medical oncology resident, Fox-Alvarez continues to finetune the project, involving more colleagues from UF and other institutions, harnessing the collective energy and creativity to enhance content and students’ learning experience in spite of the limitations in place.

Enough interest ensued that within a week, Fox-Alvarez had received additional recorded rounds from several other educators. From UF, rounds were contributed from his wife as well as from Penny Regier, D.V.M., an assistant professor of small animal surgery, and Alexander Thompson, D.V.M, an anesthesiology resident. Also contributing was Jacqueline Whittemore, D.V.M., Ph.D., an associate professor of small animal surgery at the University of Tennessee’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

Whittemore, the first non-UF faculty member to volunteer to do a VICE rounds, said when she first read about the initiative, she was inspired to see people choosing to act in response to the pandemic, instead of to just their own circumstances. She worked deep into the night and wrapped up her first recording at 1 a.m.

“The biggest surprise for me has been all the feedback I have already received on it,” Whittemore said. “What has been more rewarding, however, is how much the catalog has grown between then and yesterday when I logged on to update the status for my newest rounds. It is a true testament to both the Fox-Alvarezes’ vision and the mettle of veterinary educators everywhere. We do, indeed, have some of the greatest jobs and colleagues on earth.”

Fox-Alvarez said he knew veterinary students everywhere in the clinical phase of their curriculum are probably disappointed that they are missing out on their clinical clerkships.

“But we are doing our damndest and so far, students have been very positive with feedback,” he said. “Although there is no substitute for experiential learning, VICE Rounds strive to emulate the clinical case experience using the unique resources and perspectives of veterinary educators from different specialties, universities and locations. I’m hopeful that this may serve as a lasting and reliable resource for students and veterinarians during an otherwise volatile time.”