Archive for May, 2009

A Delightful Coincidence

May 30, 2009

Seung will be entering his last year of veterinary school at Colorado State University.  On top of his busy academic load, he manages to work part time as a technician at Fort Collins Veterinary Emergency Clinic. As a way of figuring out which area of specialization to pursue following graduation he decided to experience an externship in a large emergency/specialty hospital.  His wife Stephanie heard my NPR interview on Fresh Air with Terry Gross and suggested that Seung consider my hospital.  Being the good husband that he is, he did exactly that- an externship was arranged.  Imagine his surprise (and mine) when Seung learned that one of his coworkers at the Emergency Clinic is none other than my 22-year-old son, Jacob!  Seung has stayed in our home and worked at my hospital this week.  He’s an exceptional student who is going to go far in the veterinary profession, and we’ve enjoyed his company enormously.  What a delightful coincidence! 

Dr. Nancy Kay

Specialist, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine 

Please visit www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. SPEAKING FOR SPOT is available at Amazon.com, local bookstores, or your favorite online book seller. 

Look for us on Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/speakingforspot

Become a Fan of Speaking for Spot on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/pages/Nancy-Kay/105415179814?ref=share

Listen to Dr. Kay’s interview – A Veterinarian Advises “How to Speak for Spot” on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102105836

Traveling with Spot

May 23, 2009

Speaking for Spot has taken me on quite a journey!  My book has opened doors to many fabulous invitations and opportunities. Here are a couple of examples.  Three weeks ago I was honored to give the keynote address at the Bergin University of Canine Studies commencement ceremony.  Located in Santa Rosa, California, this organization’s stated mission is advancement of the human-canine partnership through research and education.  Bergin University is the home of the Assistance Dog Institute in which dogs are trained for a variety of service jobs.  At the graduation ceremony I attended, three dogs began a lifetime of assistance work and companionship for three individuals with physical disabilities.  A fourth dog joined a family to assist with the needs of an autistic child.  There wasn’t a dry eye in the house!  In the course of my speech I discussed how my work and the work of Assistance Dog Institute both advance the human animal bond- we simply approach it from different angles.  While they train dogs to become advocates for their humans, I train humans to become advocates for their dogs. 

This past weekend, I paid a visit to the Argus Institute in Fort Collins, Colorado.  This organization recently celebrated its 25th anniversary.  The mission of the Argus Institute is to strengthen veterinarian-client-patient communication and support relationships between people and their companion animals.  Not only do they provide a tremendous support system for people experiencing grief about the loss or illness of a beloved pet, they also provide a comprehensive curriculum on client communication for Colorado State University veterinary students.  Believe it or not, most vet schools provide no formal training in client communication.  I was tremendously impressed by what I saw and learned at the Argus Institute and was privileged to provide a lecture while there on the topic of “How Veterinary Clients’ Expectations Are Changing.” 

I invite you to learn more about these two wonderful organizations by visiting www.assistancedog.org and www.argusinstitute.colostate.edu

Dr. Nancy Kay – Specialist, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine 

Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. SPEAKING FOR SPOT is available at Amazon.com, local bookstores, or your favorite online book seller. 

Look for us on Twitter – http://twitter.com/speakingforspot

Become a Fan of Speaking for Spot on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/pages/Nancy-Kay/105415179814?ref=share 

Listen to Dr. Kay’s interview – A Veterinarian Advises “How to Speak for Spot” on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?story

Speaking for Spot named finalist in 2009 Indie Excellence Book Awards

May 13, 2009

Speaking for Spot: Be the Advocate Your Dog Needs to Live a Happy, Healthy, Longer Life was named a finalist by NIEA in the Animals/Pets category on May 7, 2009. 

The Indie Excellence® Awards are dedicated to celebrating and promoting the outstanding work of independent publishers and authors. 

Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. SPEAKING FOR SPOT is available at Amazon.com, local bookstores, or your favorite online book seller.

Look for us on Twitter – http://twitter.com/speakingforspot

A Veterinarian Advises “How to Speak for Spot” on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?story Id=102105836

The Winners – Speaking for Spot Be Kind to Animals Week Contest

May 8, 2009

I suspect that every week is a “Be Kind to Animals Week” in your household.  Nonetheless, the official “Be Kind to Animals Week” started this year on May third.  In honor of this special time, I held a contest via my website (www.speakingforspot.com) asking my readers to submit their favorite canine health tips.  I received dozens, put them all in a hat, and drew out two winners.  Tonya and Carolyn are the winners.  Not only will they receive an autographed copy of Speaking for Spot, I told them I would make their canine health tips “famous” by publishing them in my blog!  Thanks to all who participated.

Here is what Tonya had to say:  “With hot weather approaching and family dogs that want no part of swimming or the hose we have found a perfect solution.  We built our dogs a sand pit in a shady area.  We moisten the sand with water and the Boxers enjoy lying in the coolness.  In addition, our Danish/Swedish Farmdog loves to dig and has learned that the sand pit is his special digging spot.  At the end of the day, a quick squirt of the hose puts all the sand back in the pit, levels it and makes ready for the next day’s warm weather.  Any sand in the dogs’ coats dries quickly and drops off before entering the house.

Here is Carolyn’s health tip:  “it really pays off to spend a few minutes daily grooming your dog and teaching him/her to enjoy this time. I also brush teeth and do stretching exercises with my older dog.   Besides looking good and feeling good, the benefits are many: you can find any lumps or minor injuries and treat them before they grow worse, you can deal with fleas and ticks before they become established,you can brush out mats in long-haired dogs before they get out of control. Most important, you strengthen the bond between you and your dog and spend ‘quality time’ together.”

Dr. Nancy Kay

Specialist, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine

Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. SPEAKING FOR SPOT is available at Amazon.com, local bookstores, or your favorite online book seller.

Look for us on Twitter – http://twitter.com/speakingforspot

A Veterinarian Advises “How to Speak for Spot” on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?story Id=102105836

One Dog I’ll Never Forget

May 4, 2009

On October 17, 1989 while many were preparing to watch the third game of the world series between the Oakland A’s and the San Francisco Giants, I was at work in an Oakland, California veterinary hospital examining Cinder, a lovely Cocker Spaniel and her brand new litter of pups- born that very day. Without warning, the room we were in began violently rocking and rolling.  The light fixtures were swaying and the exam table slid back and forth across the room.  I remember having the feeling that a great crevasse would open up and my patients and I would freefall down into it.  I truly thought my life was about to end. 

Cinder was unfazed by the event.  She and her puppies thrived.  In fact, Cinder had her second litter on October 20, 1991, another date that rattled my nerves to the core.  This was the date of the Oakland Hills fire, an inferno of devastating proportions.  Approximately 3,500 dwellings were destroyed- the fire’s fury came within a half mile of our home.  

Needless to say, I had a serious discussion with Cinder’s human companions.  I thought it only reasonable for them to have their little girl spayed in the hopes of staving off any more natural disasters in Oakland, California.  They were more than happy to follow my recommendation! 

Dr. Nancy Kay
Specialist, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine

Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. SPEAKING FOR SPOT is available at Amazon.com, local bookstores, or your favorite online book seller.

Look for us on Twitter – http://twitter.com/speakingforspot

A Veterinarian Advises “How to Speak for Spot” on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102105836