A letter from Adam Christman, DVM, MBA.
April is the beginning of the second quarter, and it is a nice feeling. I have always felt that the first quarter of the year is the toughest, as it tends to drag a little. But now that the clocks have sprung forward, and we see glimmers of springtime approaching in various parts of our country, it makes us feel energized, rejuvenated, and ready to spend some time outdoors with our families and pets. I was chatting with my fantastic neighbor, telling him how nice it is to see him and the family outside and enjoying the weather here in the Northeast. He so eloquently stated, “I wish I could enjoy it, but my headspace is with my family in Ukraine.”
As the war continues, many animals have been stranded in the rush for safety along with the millions of refugees. According to the Associated Press (AP), a German organization has set up a shelter at the Ukraine-Poland border to help. All the animals are “very traumatized and very stressed coming from a war zone,” Sonja Mortensen-Dissing, a volunteer from Denmark, told the AP. Many animals are huddled and some are street dogs being grouped with lost pets. The Humane Society International is providing necessary support, including emergency funds, to groups that are helping the Ukrainian people and the animals in their care who have been devasted by Russia’s military invasion.
In the United States, many of us are doing what we can to support Ukrainian refugees and pets in solidarity. Marty Becker, DVM, founder of the Fear Free movement, dvm360® Advisory Board member, has gone further than most veterinarians. He has traveled to the Ukraine-Romania border and is working with the World Vets nonprofit organization to provide free veterinary services to animals from Ukraine in need of medical care. Visit here to help support this mission.
We are better connected than ever. Social media, Zoom calls, and other telemedicine like apps have promoted the term “metafriends.” We have more international friends because of the pandemic, and that has made us check on our friends in Ukraine. We are a diverse, loving, and compassionate veterinary community. We know the importance of kindness and what it takes to be a good human being. In times of seeing humanity questioned, we as a veterinary community learn how to stay strong and support one another. Veterinarians are here not just for the animals but also for the people.
On behalf of dvm360® and MJH Life Sciences®, we stand with the people and the pets of Ukraine. We are here to support them in any way we can, because we know we are stronger together, regardless of borders and boundaries.