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Dr. Ruth MacPete: What I'm Thankful For

Posted November 23, 2013 in A Vet's Life

Dr. Ruth MacPete divulges what she's thankful for this holiday season. For more from Dr. MacPete, find her on Facebook or at www.drruthpetvet.com!

While we should always be thankful for what we have, Thanksgiving serves as a good yearly reminder for us to acknowledge the things we are thankful for. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’m dedicating my blog to the people and things I am thankful for.

Dr. Ruth MacPete with her pets

I’m thankful for having a loving family that brings me joy and fills my heart with laughter and love. I’m thankful for my beautiful, smart daughter who makes me proud every day with her creativity, intelligence, and sweet nature. I’m thankful for my son who melts my heart with his hugs and kisses. I’m thankful for my husband who loves and supports me. I’m thankful for my parents for always being there for me when I need them. I’m thankful for my in-laws for all their help with the kids. I’m thankful for my friends for their love and support. And I’m thankful for my pets and for having the best job in the world.

Veterinary medicine can often be busy and stressful, so it is easy to see why vets sometimes forget that being a veterinarian is the best job in the world. It is truly a privilege to be able to use our years of training and expertise to help animals, and indirectly, the people who love them. Since all veterinarians are animal lovers, we are fortunate to be in a profession that allows us to help our animal patients directly. However, as animal lovers ourselves, we can appreciate the strength of the human-animal bond and the positive impact our work has on the pet parents who love our animal patients.

Which brings me to my final point: I’m thankful for my pets. My pets give me unconditional love, companionship, and so much more. When I come home from work their presence brightens my day. When I go to sleep, their warmth comforts me and helps lull me to sleep. Pets are a big part of my life and seem to fill the house with life. Sadly, this October I lost my cat Ling. Ling was a part of my family for nearly 15 years and was my me and my husband's first “child” together. He slept in my arms under the covers and woke me up with kisses. When my daughter was born he would sit on my lap to keep me company while I fed her in the middle of the night. He was a superstar of a cat who in his younger days would wow my guests with his fetching ability and outgoing personality. In fact, several of my friends got their own Siamese cat hoping to have a Ling of their own. One of them even converted from being a “dog person” to a “Siamese cat person” because of Ling. Losing Ling was incredibly difficult and thinking of him not being here still makes me sad, but I’m reminded of how lucky I was to have him in our lives for as long as we did. Ling gave us his boundless love and filled our lives with joy. I’m grateful that my kids got to know him, that he touched the lives of many people and that I had the pleasure of having such an incredible cat, friend and child in my life for so many years.

Enjoy the turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie, but don't forget to think about the things you are grateful for this Thanksgiving.

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Ruth has more than 15 years of experience in the veterinary industry as a companion animal veterinarian in private practice. Along with being a writer and media personality, she is also a founding member of IDEXX’s Pet Health Network team.

Opinions expressed are those of the writer:

The opinions and views expressed in this post are those of the author's and do not necessarily represent the beliefs, policies or positions of all veterinarians, Pet Health Network, IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. or its affiliates and partner companies.