My trip to Peru has concluded and all I have to show for it is my series "Vets Abroad" blog posts, a vast collection of commemorative photos, and resolving scars from nasty insect bites. Then again, I'd rather not have bought home an undesirable traveling companion in the form of Malaria, Dengue Fever, or some other disease. Thank you Malarone (anti-Malaria medication) , DEET, mosquito repelling fabrics, and probiotic supplements.
Coming home was quite the culture shock considering all of the modern amenities and plentiful nutrient options we have in the United States that are not as readily available in Peru. The people with whom I interacted in Iquitos and remote communities along the Amazon River predominantly exuded an enviable sense of satisfaction with their simple worldly belongings and utilitarian existences. As Americans, why are we not more grateful for the day to day luxuries we have instead of being exceedingly fixated on non-essential material possessions?
I want to express my thanks to Amazon Cares and its team for creating the opportunity for me to participate in my FIRST international veterinary volunteer trip. Big shout outs go out to Molly Mednikow (Amazon Cares president), Bruno Antoine, Esther Pena, and Amazon Cares' Peruvian veterinarians and support staff (Bethany, Harry, Lilly, Luis, Manuela, Misha, and others whose names I may not recall due to my gringo-esque Spanish inexperience).
We had an experienced group of volunteers from the United States and beyond. Without our drive to do good and improve on our treatment technique, I don't now how we would have been able to help so many dogs and cats (and 2 monkeys) in need. Great job team members:
Jessica Vogelsang DVM (Pawcurious)
Amanda Brown DVM (virtual veterinarian from Generation Vet)
Nikka Harvey (Happy Pets Magazine)
An ultra-appreciative thank you must also be given to the product manufacturers (donating supplies) and financial supporters, including:
I Love Dogs- The top sponsor and provider of premium canine supplements (see Amazon Cares Shelter Dogs Receive Vet Exams and I Love Dogs Supplements)
Stephanie De Ortiz
Thomas L Devries
Gary and Lisa Elliott
Omar Farias Llovet
Gerry and Dave Mahaney
Michelle and Joe Mahaney
Alison and Martin (WoofLinx)
Jenny McDaniel (Royal Pet Mortuary)
Tuuyen Phan Tran
Michael Ramieri DVM
Stefanie Scheff DVM
Jim and Sharon Scott
Michelle, Brad, Allison, David, Erin, Spencer, and Riley Scott
Cathy Small- Cleaveland
Steven Smith DVM
Phyllis Zimbler Miller and Yael Miller (Miller Mosaic Social Media Marketing)
Additional thanks must be given to those that gave me publicity through various media outlets including:
Shawn Finch DVM (Riley and James Blog)
Lorie Huston DVM (Pet Health Care Gazette)
Charyn Pfeuffer (Global Citizen Project)
Jana and Jasmine Rade (Dawg Business)
Bambi Weavil (Out Impact and Out Impact Radio- Check out my twice monthly "Healthy People and Pets with Dr Patrick" web radio show where I discuss my perspective on veterinary medicine, current events, and LGBT topics)
My Peruvian trip has truly activated my do-gooder gene and I'm ready to participate in more veterinary philanthropic excursions. Does anyone have a connection to a network (Animal Planet, NatGeo, Travel Channel, OWN, other) that would be interested in documenting my work helping animals lacking medical care in various countries and continents on our planet? Do any of my readers want work with me on such a project? I'd appreciate any input and suggestions you may have in making my concept a reality (please leave your comments or email me: firstname.lastname@example.org).
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Copyright of this article (2011) is owned by Dr. Patrick Mahaney, Veterinarian and Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist. Republishing any portion of this article must first be authorized by Dr. Patrick Mahaney. Requests for republishing must be approved by Dr. Patrick Mahaney and received in written format.