American Humane pays tribute to vet and vet tech of the year
A Colorado practitioner and an Illinois technician do a lot of good for animals outside of their day jobs.
A shelter veterinarian who operates a low-cost pet health clinic and a pet food bank and a veterinary technician who started a rescue group serving special-needs puppies were named American heroes Sept. 16.
Patricia Canchola, DVM, of Pueblo, Colorado, was honored as the 2017 American Hero Veterinarian and Jeni Hudson, CVT, of Decatur, Illinois, as the 2017 American Hero Veterinary Technician. Seven canines were spotlighted as well during the seventh annual American Humane Hero Dog Awards.
The event, which took place in Beverly Hills, California, will be broadcast Oct. 26 on the Hallmark Channel.
Dr. Canchola, a shelter veterinarian at Pueblo Animal Services, performs from 3,500 to 4,500 spay-neuter surgeries a year and oversees the care of about 5,000 animals annually.
American Humane, which organizes the awards ceremony in cooperation with presenting sponsor Zoetis Inc., noted that Dr. Canchola last year “took it upon herself to take veterinary forensics courses to be better trained when examining abused, neglected and mistreated animals that are part of criminal investigations.”
“On top of this very busy and difficult job, she operates her own nonprofit pet food bank, helping hundreds of families every year to feed their pets,” American Humane stated. “As if that was not enough for her to do, she also runs an independent, low-cost pet health clinic two Saturdays a month, offering affordable vaccines, preventive health care and treatment of common illnesses and minor injuries.”
Her off-hours organizations are called Dr. Patti’s Amazin’ Amos Pet Food Pantry and St. Martin’s Well Pet Clinic.
Hudson, who works at Northgate Pet Clinic, founded a rescue group five years ago “that takes in pups with cleft palates and other disabilities,” her nominator wrote.
“She never turns a pup away,” the person wrote. “She has spent hours tube-feeding pups who would otherwise die if not for her. … She is changing the way medical professionals view these pups.”
Robin Ganzert, Ph.D., president and CEO of American Humane, called the two women “the best of the best in their fields.”
“Dr. Canchola and Ms. Hudson are tremendous animal welfare advocates, and we are so proud to learn of their laudable accomplishments aiding the animals in need in their communities and beyond,” Dr. Ganzert said.
The canine categories and honorees were:
- American Hero Dog: Abigail, a 1-year-old pitbull mix from Lehigh Acres, Florida.
- Law Enforcement/Arson Dogs: Ice, from Olympia, Washington.
- Guide/Hearing Dogs: Pierce, from Palm Bay, Florida.
- Military Dogs: Adak, from St. Cloud, Minnesota.
- Search and Rescue Dogs: Luca, from Grand Prairie, Texas.
- Service Dogs: Atlas the Wonder Dog, from Dayton, Ohio.
- Therapy Dogs: Aladdin, from Haddonfield, New Jersey.