The Argus-Press

Farm, lifestyle trends affect food animal veterinarians

Posted: Sunday, December 12, 2010 8:00 am

CORUNNA — On a blustery, cold December morning that cut through the walls of Corner Oak Farm’s milking cow barn, Dr. Erwin Lenneman arrived after a 27-mile trek to inspect the reproductive health of the farm’s dairy cows.

As he inspected nearly 30 cows at the Grand Blanc farm, Lenneman used his veterinary expertise along with his physical strength and familiarity with livestock to get the job done.

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  • mommawcheryl posted at 5:05 pm on Thu, Dec 16, 2010.

    mommawcheryl Posts: 1

    We no longer own cattle but we have 10 horses & 2 mini's. For just routine care we have to haul them one county over. We had to learn to do a lot of their care ourselfs. There just are not enough large animal Vets around. They want the easy life taking care of small animals such as dogs & cats. Not even something as small as a goat will be treated as it is considered a Farm Animal & isn't covered by their insurance. Malpractice insurance is one reason & the Vet's own health & accident insurance costs too much for large animals coverage. I have to pay the price & shoot my horse if it should break a leg because I can't get a Vet to come to my county. We have more horses here in Raleigh County WV than there was since horse & buggy days & don't have a large animal Vet. It is a shame but a fact. You would think that there would be one horse loving Vet to come & practice here but they all want the gravy the small animal practice where they can charge $400.00- $500.00 for an office call & some bloodwork. Easy pickins.

  • Granny posted at 7:37 am on Thu, Dec 16, 2010.

    Granny Posts: 71

    Our family has owned a dairy operation for decades and I agree wholeheartedly with kaylor. Farmers would rather pay a vet for routine care so their time is freed up--however, it is cost prohibitive. That is why we have learned to provide the routine care our livestock requires.

  • kaylor posted at 12:05 pm on Tue, Dec 14, 2010.

    kaylor Posts: 19

    I must respectfully disagree that farmers are not willing to pay for routine veterinary care. That is not a matter of choice. They can not afford to pay for routine care. They have to learn how to do the routine stuff themselves. There simply is not enough money made in farming to allow the luxury of paying a veterinarian to do routine things. But I do believe more students prefer the cushie life of a small animal vet, as compared to the large animal/food animal work.

  • jerryvet posted at 4:19 pm on Mon, Dec 13, 2010.

    jerryvet Posts: 1

    I must respectfully disagree with Dr. Ames. I don't think the tough lifestyle of a large animal veterinarian is keeping the current students from pursuing a career there. It's the fact that there aren't enough farmers willing to pay for routine care. They've decided to save money on that, and only rely on vets for emergency services. Then we're all supposed to feel bad when rural areas no longer have a vet. The areas won't support a vet.

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