Lakeland's swan veterinarian maintains family tradition
By SARAH CAREY
Anyone who has ever heard Tchaikovsky's moving "Swan
Lake" ballet score or experienced the amazement of
watching true grace in motion when a swan glides smoothly
across a body of water under-
stands instantly the birds'
mystique and intrigue.
Geoff Gardner, D.V.M., '85,
owner of Lakeland Veterinary
Hospital, appreciates swans in
a unique way. For him, caring
for the four varieties of swans
of Lakes Morton, Wire and
Mirror in Lakeland is not just
an act of love or reverence, but
a family affair that dates back
At that time, the Queen of
England donated a mating
pair to the City of Lakeland.
The following year, one of the
swans became ill and the city
parks and recreation director
asked Gardner's father, Wade
Dr. Geoffrey R. Gardner holds a mute swan from C
D. Gardner, D.V.M., if he could Dr. Wade G. Gardner looks on. Both are team men
take care of it. presentation of the U.S. Daily Point of Light award
"Nearly fifty years later, we're LaKe Resort & Country Club in urlando, Ila.
still taking care of the swans for the City of Lakeland," Gardner
said. "My dad retired in 1995 and I've taken care of them pro-
fessionally since 1987. As a child, I was taking care of swans,
we'd do the swan round-ups and I'd be helping out."
The city's collection includes about 175 swans now, most
of them English and Polish Mutes, Gardner said. Other
varieties include South American Black-Necked Swan and the
Australian Black Swan, in addition to a uniquely colored swan
known as the Mearle Swan.
Gardner, who will become the Florida Veterinary Medical
Association's new president
in September, sees about one
swan per week for a variety of
ailments ranging from respi-
ratory to eye infections and
"I'd say I spend about an
hour a week on swan care," he
said. "It's not really that much.
SDuring the spring, it becomes
a couple of hours a week and
we'll get as many as seven or
eight babies a week for health
checks and vaccinations. We
pinion their wings during their
-- ."'"vaccination process to keep
them from flying. By state law,
you have to keep a non-native
population from roaming, and
Since the swans are not indig-
nge Lake Resort & Country Club as father
:rs of The Regal Swan and attended the Jan. 18 enous, they need to stay where
The Regal Swan team members held at Orange they are supposed to be."
He added that the Lakeland
birds never learn to fly, "because we permanently alter that" by
removing feathers from the birds' right side.
In the fall, he and his father, along with a few staffers from
Lakeland Veterinary Hospital and city staffers do a swan
round-up to perform routine health checks, implant microchips
and vaccinate against botulism.
"All the swans have medical records and they come in
See Gardner pg. 11
Longtime college dean
leaves college to accept
new job at Tennessee, and
Dr. James Thompson is
named interim dean.
Heart Surgery Alumni News
Saves Dog l r Check out photos from
In a rare collaborative the recent North American
procedure involving UF phy- veterinary Conference and
sicians and veterinarians other alumni news
from the VMC, a bamboo
skewer is removed from a
A revitalized farrier
service and a new Exotic
Pathology Service are now
available at the VMC.
S4.erEar!&iJ Message fa-wv t^r kvvv
Florida Veterinarian is published by the University
of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine for alumni
and friends. Suggestions and comments are
welcome and should be sent to:
Editor, Florida Veterinarian
UF College of Veterinary Medicine
PO. Box 100125
Gainesville, FL 32610-0125
Check out the college website at:
Joseph A. DiPietro
Executive Associate Dean
Ronald R. Gronwall
Associate Dean for Research
and Graduate Studies
Charles H. Courtney
Associate Dean for
Students and Instruction
James A. Thompson
Senior Director of Development
and Alumni Affairs
Director of Development
and Alumni Affairs
Director of Public Relations
Sarah K. Carey
Small Animal Hospital
(352)392-4700, ext. 4700
Large Animal Hospital
(352)392-4700, ext. 4000
(352) 392-4700, ext. 5300
(352) 392-4700, ext. 5000
(352)392-4700, ext. 5206
Development and Alumni Affairs
(352) 392-4700, ext. 5200
AAi~ y,*M, co- a.-WdOW-
Sear Faculty, Staff, Students, Alumni, Supporters
In the more than nine years I have served as dean, I
have come to understand and appreciate the special
nature of our mission and the high quality of our
people and programs. I have had a wonderful and
rewarding time and have appreciated your support,
hard work, dedication and help during my tenure.
We have enjoyed many successes and victories that
would not have been possible without your efforts.
Additionally, we have weathered disappointments.
In those times, I really valued not only your help and
positive "we'll get it done attitude", but more impor-
tantly admired your resilience.
The support you provided me gave me great con-
Dean Joe DiPietr fidence. You will not find a harder working, more
dedicated, or finer group of people to work with or for
on the UF campus than the faculty, staff, students, alumni, supporters and friends of
our college. From my perspective you are the "magicians" who really get the work
done while administrators are the "magician's helpers." You advance our scholar-
ship, expand beneficial knowledge and understanding, create an environment where
students are colleagues in the learning and discovery experience, provide exceptional
care for our VMC patients and help secure resources for our needs.
Because of your commitment, the college is on a very positive trajectory. I am
grateful to Interim Dean Jim Thompson for his willingness to serve in this capacity
and am reassured and pleased by Senior Vice President of Health Affairs Doug
Barrett and IFAS Vice President Jimmy Cheeks' decision to place the college in Jim's
capable hands. I have utmost confidence that his leadership will continue to move
the college forward and will assure a smooth transition to a permanent appointee.
While I am excited about assuming my new duties and the associated challenges
of my new position, at the same time it is hard to leave this college, as well as life as
I have known it, having been in and around veterinary colleges for more than three
decades. You will always hold a very special place in my heart and I anticipate
hearing of your additional successes frequently. I remain indebted to you in ways I
feel are impossible to ever repay. The UF CVM is a fabulous place and a crown jewel
among U.S. veterinary schools, and I will miss it, and all of you, dearly.
My wish for all of you is that you and the college continue to advance animal,
human and environmental health through your educational, research, clinical, and
outreach activities; that society continues to recognize with even greater regularity
and fervor all you do, and that you achieve all you dream of and more.
Remember I will be watching you and will revel in the memories of working with
you and riding with Team VetMed. It's been a wonderful ride. One of those where
the weather is perfect....the wind is always at your back, the terrain is flat, and team is
always out in front pulling hard for you... it's like ridin' without a chain! Lastly, be
well, do good work, and keep in touch.
Adieu and warm regards,
Joseph A. DiPietro
Longtime college dean accepts job at Tennessee
oseph A. DiPietro, D.V.M., M.S.,
who has led the University of
Florida College of Veterinary Medicine
as dean for the past nine years, has
accepted a job as vice president of agri-
culture at the University of Tennessee.
He left the college
for his new post on
"I am saddened
at the thought of
leaving my many
ers and colleagues
at the college and
said. "I have had
a wonderful and
Dr. Joseph A. DiPietro rewarding time here
and have appreciated the strong broad-
based support I have received."
DiPietro added, "UF and the College
of Veterinary Medicine will remain in a
very special place in my heart and I antic-
ipate hearing of its continued successes
often as it continues to advance animal,
human and environmental health."
Doug Barrett, M.D., senior vice
president for health affairs, and Jimmy
Cheek, Ph.D., vice president of the
Institute of Food and Agricultural
Sciences, announced that a search
committee had been formed for a new
dean and paid tribute to DiPietro for his
"During his more than nine-year
tenure here, Joe has earned the respect of
faculty, staff and students, the college's
research budget has steadily increased,
and many innovative educational,
clinical and research initiatives have been
implemented," Barrett and Cheek said
in a joint statement. "Joe has personally
distinguished himself in his profes-
sional activities, rising this past summer
to become president of the American
Association of Veterinary Medical
Colleges. We wish Joe all the best as he
embraces this new phase of his career."
During his tenure, college research
grants increased from $5.5 million to
$12.5 million, and annual fundraising
totals increased from $1.9 million to $7.4
Dr. Teresa Dolan, dean of the UF
College of Dentistry, will chair the search
"The committee will begin immedi-
ately to conduct a nationwide search
for an exceptional individual to lead the
College of Veterinary Medicine through
its next period of growth and develop-
ment," Barrett and Cheek said. "Because
we have an outstanding college with
talented and committed faculty, staff and
students, we are confident this position
will attract a leader of the first rank."
Search committee members will include
veterinary medicine faculty members
Dr. Mary Brown, Dr. Colin Burrows,
Dr. John Dame, Dr. David Freeman, Dr.
Ron Gronwall, Dr. Rick Johnson, Dr.
Julie Levy, Dr. Maureen Long and Dr.
Steve Roberts; IFAS faculty members Dr.
Lokenga Badinga, Dr. Peter Hansen and
Dr. Mark McLellan; third-year veterinary
medicine student Shale Kenney; and a
community veterinarian. F
Students and instruction administrator named interim dean
ames P. Thompson, D.V.M., Ph.D.,
has been named interim dean of
the University of Florida College of
Veterinary Medicine. He began serving
in that role Feb. 20.
currently is the
dean of students
M.D., senior vice
president for health
affairs, and Jimmy
Cheek, Ph.D., vice
Dr. James Thompson president of the
Institute of Food
and Agricultural Sciences, appointed
him to the position after Dean Joseph A.
DiPietro announced he had accepted a
position as vice president for agriculture
at the University of Tennessee.
"Dr. Thompson is a longtime faculty
member and an alumnus of the college,"
Barrett and Cheek said in a joint
statement to college faculty, staff and
students. "As associate dean for students
and instruction since 1996 and a member
of the college's executive team, Jim
brings a wealth of knowledge and experi-
ence to the position. We know you join
us in appreciation for Jim's willingness to
take on this responsibility."
Thompson received both his D.V.M.
and Ph.D. degrees from UF. He also
completed a residency in small animal
internal medicine at UF prior to joining
the faculty in 1986.
Board-certified in the specialties
of internal medicine, immunology,
virology, microbiology and oncology,
Thompson has won numerous awards
both for his teaching and for his research
and has served as academic adviser for
dozens of veterinary students, residents
and interns over the years. After his days
as a graduate student and resident at UF,
Thompson became an assistant professor
and director of the Veterinary Medical
Teaching Hospital's immunology service
before advancing to full professor and
Thompson has been active at the
national level in the Association of
American Veterinary Medical Colleges
and the American College of Veterinary
Microbiology. He also is a member of the
Morris Animal Foundation's scientific
At the university level, he has served
as a member of both the Faculty Senate
and Curriculum Committee. He is a
member of the UF Health Science Center
Academic Deans Council and has served
on numerous committees within the
Thompson has continued to teach a
course in professional veterinary ethics.
"My focus as interim dean will be to
carry forward the plans that Joe DiPietro
has established with the expansion of
the Veterinary Medical Center's Small
Animal Hospital as a major objective,"
Thompson said. "I look forward to
serving the college faculty, staff and
students as well as the HSC and IFAS to
the best of my abilities." .I
6lorida 6 eTi 3 .
Clinical w 1 ah+r
Human, animal doctors from UF report
success in dog's rare open heart surgery
By SARAH CAREY
from the University of
Florida said "Yankee,
go home" recently, they
did so with pride and a
sense of heartfelt joint
Yankee, a tail-
retriever, went home
from UF's Veterinary
Medical Center Feb. 3
with her actual owners,
the Stazzone family of
Satellite Beach, after
successful open heart
surgery to remove a
bamboo barbecue skewer
from her heart.
In a collaborative
UF veterinarians and
physicians from the
Congenital Heart Center
at UF, Yankee was placed
on bypass for 55 minutes
Jan. 27 at a surgical
research facility located
near the MRI unit that
was used to pinpoint the
skewer's location. The
Mary Stazzone greets her dog, Yankee, at UF's Veterir
skewer had perforated the dog's stomach and pierced the
heart after she ate a steak kabob.
The entire operation lasted about three hours, and
pediatric cardiothoracic surgeon Mark Bleiweis, M.D., the
center's director, was lead surgeon on the case.
"We had very little time to coordinate this thing, and the
team worked out really great," said Gary Ellison, D.V.M.,
a professor of small animal surgery at UF who assisted in
the procedure. "While we provided the critical care before
and after Yankee's surgery, we don't have the capability
of doing bypass at our veterinary hospital and we needed
the human surgeon's expertise."
Only two veterinary institutions in the country perform
heart bypass procedures in dogs and those are located in
Texas and Colorado, Ellison said, adding that Yankee's
condition would have made transport to any other facility
Once the skewer was
removed, Bleiweis rebuilt
a damaged heart valve.
a ,'- "I'm really proud of
what we did, and that
we were able to put this
r many people from so
many specialties together
to save this dog's life,"
Bleiweis said. "I'm an
animal owner and this
is someone's family
Bleiweis added that
although Yankee had a
severe heart infection,
she responded to the
i procedure "better than
most people do."
"We were able to get
her off the ventilator
and out of the operating
room without a problem
and she was standing
on all fours that same
day," he said. "It was
After the operation
was completed and
Yankee awakened from
the anesthesia, she was
transported back to the
ary Medical Center while husband Vince looks on. VMC's small animal
intensive care unit.
"By Sunday night, she was eating and walking outside,"
said Nikki Hackendahl, D.V.M., the small animal internal
medicine resident at UF who had primary responsibility
for Yankee and monitored her progress every day.
Yankee's woes actually began on Halloween, when
the Stazzones had steak kabobs for dinner and Yankee
grabbed one, "practically inhaling the whole thing," Mary
Stazzone said. "Immediately she was sick and throwing
up, and everything I cleaned up was steak, but no stick."
After her initial surgery, Yankee seemed to have
recovered. But two months later her condition rapidly
deteriorated and it initially appeared to be unrelated to
her previous illness.
When Yankee was admitted to the VMC a few days
prior to surgery, her blood was not clotting and she was
anemic, Hackendahl said. Then Hackendahl detected
Dr. Amara Estrada and Dr. Nikki Hackendahl with Yankee.
Estrada holds the skewer that was removed from
a heart murmur and immediately
requested a consultation from vet-
erinary cardiologist Amara Estrada,
"We did an echocardiogram and
noticed a strange linear structure
in the heart," Estrada said. "Then
we found out the dog had a history
of eating a bamboo skewer back
in October and surgery had been
performed to remove part of it from
the dog's stomach."
The veterinarian who referred
Yankee to UF had performed a CT
scan and been extremely thorough,
but wood is not visible on a CT scan,
Thankfully, Dr. Hackendahl discov-
ered the heart murmur," Stazzone
said. "We knew there was a slim
chance this would all work out, but
we did a lot of praying on this one.
We obviously love Yankee very
Because of the close relationship
Estrada and the veterinary cardiology
group have with the human pediatric
cardiology team the two groups
round together on Wednesdays -
Estrada shared images from Yankee's
echocardiogram and asked her
human counterparts' opinion.
"We were going to do inflow
occlusion, a procedure that prohibits
blood flow but gives you only two
to four minutes to open up the heart
and look inside," Estrada said. "They
said this wasn't such a great idea
due to the short time frame and the
limited access. I asked them for help
and they readily accepted and offered
to assist us with the case."
Also playing a key role from the
veterinary college were numerous
other clinicians, including
Hackendahl, small animal medicine
associate professor Julie Levy,
D.V.M., Ph.D., anesthesiology
resident Andre Shih, D.V.M., and car-
diology resident Herb Maisenbacher,
D.V.M. Assisting from the College
of Medicine were Barry Byrne, M.D.,
Ph.D., a professor and associate
chairman of Pediatrics; Harvey
Ramirez, D.V.M., from UF's labora-
tory animal services; and Dale Clark,
a blood perfusionist. Behind the
scenes, many others, including vet-
erinary college faculty and staff who
operate the small animal hospital's
blood bank, worked overtime to
obtain blood components and coordi-
nate what was necessary to complete
Although Yankee developed a
systemic infection that will continue
to be treated with antibiotics, she's
alive and improving every day,
clinicians said. Her owners said their
three daughters have been making
cards for Yankee and can't wait to
have her home.
"I bought Yankee for my husband
when we were just dating and
we've had her for seven years,"
Mary Stazzone said. "It was just
such a shock how this has all
New Study Will Explore
A new study underway at
UF's Veterinary Medical Center
will explore better ways to place
pacemakers in dogs with complete
"In traditional treatment, one lead
is used to pace only the ventricle.
Our study will allow us to have
which is important. Additionally,
and most importantly, we will be
looking at optimal pacing site.
"We will be looking at where
is the best place to pace, whether
from the right ventricle, the left
ventricle or both at the same time,"
said Amara Estrada, D.V.M., a
board-certified veterinary cardiolo-
gist with UF's VMC.
"We're trying to get as close
to natural cardiac physiology as
possible. Pacing equipment has
gotten so advanced that we can
get very close to imitating what
happens normally in the heart."
Estrada said UF's study will
mirror what's currently being done
in human cardiology and is unique
among veterinary colleges nation-
"This is a totally new, state-
of-the-art study," Estrada said.
"Although multi-lead pacing
techniques are being used clini-
cally in human medicine, there
have been no landmark research
studies of how the techniques
work in people. "Our research
will be a building block for human
medicine, and no other veterinary
school is doing anything like this."
Supported with internal and
external grant funding, UF's
cardiology group hopes to include
up to 35 dogs over a three-year
period. For more information about
the study, contact the cardiology
service through the VMC's main
number, (352) 392-4700, ext. 4700.
RDVMS should contact Megan Van
Rysdam at ext. 4875 for an appoint-
ment or more information.
6^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^B 6.T r -^?t^pn^^
Alumni sr-feVf f
Dr. Traci Krueger assists at sheep dairy farm
By SARAH CAREY
Anyone who knows Traci
Krueger, D.V.M, a member of
the college's Class of '03, will tell you
she's always up for a new adventure,
particularly if there's a plane ticket
involved, or animals. So it was no
surprise to Krueger's friends and to
her colleagues in the college's Food
Animal Reproduction and Medicine
Service when she responded posi-
tively to an inquiry posted on the
American Association of Small
Ruminant Practitioners list serve.
The owners of a sheep dairy farm in
New York were looking for veteri-
nary students to help their farm with
its fall lambing operation.
However, Krueger, a second-year
FARMS resident, surprised herself by
all she learned during the week she
spent at Old Chatham Sheepherding
Company. For one thing, she learned
she loved the many varieties of
cheese, including ricotta, blue and
Camembert, produced at the farm.
"Last night I made stuffed pasta
shells using some of the ricotta cheese
I brought back, and it was great," she
said, offering to bring a friend who
likes blue cheese some extra she has
in her refrigerator.
Old Chatham began in 1993 1
with a Shaker barn, 600 acres p
of lush Hudson River Valley
pastures and a flock of 115
dairy sheep. --
"Owners Tom and Nancy
Clark built more Shaker-style barns,
miles of fencing and a state of the 1
art creamery," said flock manager
Beth Slotter of Old Chatham. "The
flock has grown to more than 1,000
East Friesian crossbred sheep and
today Old Chatham Sheepherding
Company is the largest sheep dairy
farm in the United States."
The farm sells various types of
cheese and flavored yogurt, all made
from sheep's milk.
"They milk between 300 and 400
sheep twice a day," Krueger said.
"They needed assistance with the fall
lambing, when there were 250 ewes."
Krueger and Dr. Varsha Ramoutar,
an ECFVG student also from UF,
helped with the birthing process,
making sure the ewes took proper
care of the lambs, and with nursing
care for the lambs. Krueger learned
that ewes aren't separated from their
lambs for three days, unlike cows,
which are separated from their calves
immediately after giving birth.
"It takes that long for
the ewes to begin
instead of colostrum,"
Although the farm initially had
sought out veterinary students,
Krueger thought a week working
at a sheep dairy would be a great
experience for her. She took the time
as an approved externship for her
"I ended up setting up a mastitis
control program and developing
some protocols for treating lambs
that had problems like pneumonia,"
Krueger said. "I even made ricotta
cheese in the creamery. I really par-
ticipated in every aspect of the farm."
Slotter said Krueger and Ramoutar
were originally brought to the farm
as extra labor and "hopefully as a
valuable outside perspective on the
livestock health protocols that we
have established here."
The two women wound up greatly
exceeding those expectations with
their openness, enthusiasiasm and
wealth of practical knowledge,
"Although we work with a local
veterinarian, Traci and Varsha
offered insights and new ideas
about products and strategies
that have raised our level of
proficiency and care,"
Slotter said. f
Dr. Traci Krueger wanted to
see if it was really possible to
carry a lamb on one's shoulders, as
she'd seen in pictures. She concluded this
wasn't a great idea, since the lambs move
around so much.
NAVC alumni reception packs ballroom at Marriott
CVM alumni gathered with friends, family and their former professors Jan. 8 during the UF alumni reception at the
2006 North American Veterinary Conference in Orlando. Among the faculty and staff who showed up to greet the
crowd at the Marriott World Center ballroom were Dean Joe DiPietro, Dr. John Harvey, Dr. Ellis Greiner, Dr. Michael
Schaer, Dr. Lisa Farina, Dr. Jim Himes, Dr. Alastair Webb, Dr. Paul Nicoletti, Dr. Carlos Romero, Dr. Colin Burrows,
Dr. Terry Curtis, Zoe Haynes, Karen Hickok, Sarah Carey, Jo Ann Winn and Dot McColskey.At,
Dr. Paul Nicoletti, professor emeritus of infectious diseases
at the college, visits with Dr. Terry B. Besch, Class of '88,
a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army who recently served
active duty in Iraq.
Checking in at the registration table are Dr. Karen Oven, Dr.
Michelle Layton, Dr. Michelle France and Dr. Kristin Frank,
all members of the Class of '04.
Dr. Kimberly Tyson, center, with her husband at left and Dr.
Jim Himes, emeritus associate dean of students and instruc-
tion at the college.
Dr. Nancy Benson and Dr. Lynn Holladay-Coveney, both
from the Class of '95.
Special events coordinator Jo Ann Winn, left, with Dr. Colin
Burrows, center and former longtime CVM administrative
coordinator Gail Overstreet.
From lett to right are Ur. Jo Ann Uaniels, Ur. Uareck UeShields
and Dr. Tim Lockhart, all from the Class of '02.
Hartz honors UF veterinary college alumnus
Ur. Albert Ann OT the Hartz Mountain corporation presents ur.
Michael Reinhart, owner of the Jacaranda Animal Hospital
in Venice, FL, with the company's 2006 Veterinarian of the
Michael Reinhart, D.V.M., a
member of the UF College of
Veterinary Medicine's Class of 1982,
has been named Veterinarian of the
Year for 2006 by The Hartz Mountain
Hartz created its "Veterinarian of
the Year" program in 2001 to honor
veterinarians who have demon-
strated an outstanding commitment
to patients, their families and to their
Reinhart balances his community
outreach efforts while running his
veterinary medicine practice at
the Jacaranda Animal Hospital in
Venice, Florida, which he opened 20
years ago. Reinhart is also heavily
involved in youth and educational
programs in his area, routinely
speaking to children at local schools
about the veterinary profession
and animal care and encouraging
students to shadow him in his clinic.
Dr. Reinhart was very involved in
hurricane relief efforts that began
during Hurricane Charley, one of
the most destructive and devastating
hurricanes to ever hit the U.S. His
home of Southwest Florida has been
hit with nine storms in the past 14
months. Dr. Reinhart and his staff
mobilized immediately after the
storm. Driving into total devastation,
they began to pull out people and
their animals trapped in their homes.
Within 24 hours, he helped set up
a mobile, round-the-clock clinic to
treat the animals that had been lost or
injured during the storm.
After Charley, Reinhart spent three
weeks in the hurricane-damaged
area providing veterinary services
and working with thousands of local
volunteers to help area residents
find lost pets, adopt orphaned ones
and to begin putting their lives back
664 ) -
Service wr l+re
Farrier forges more awareness of service
By SARAH CAREY
A farrier's work is very often
behind the scenes.
Hoof care, including shoeing and
other therapy to address problems
with horses' feet, takes place with
little fanfare, much less public
At the University of Florida
Veterinary Medical Center's large
animal hospital, however,
farrier Adam Whitehead
aims to change all that.
"I'm a fairly enthusias-
tic person with some big
goals and big plans," said
Whitehead, who took the
reins as the hospital farrier
in May, a year after Jim
Ferguson retired from the
job for health reasons.
Whitehead said he is
excited about the oppor-
tunity his new job has
afforded him to develop
the business while simul-
taneously learning more
about lameness care and
treatment the area he is
most intrigued by.
A Plant City native,
farrier school in Tennessee
and spent two years
studying animal science
at Abraham Baldwin
Agriculture College in
Tifton, Ga., where he
eventually started his own
business. He also served as Adam White
an apprentice to a farrier Grade 4 club
in Ocala for a year before inferior check
building his 10-year career Mercury's co
as a farrier, mostly working the show
"Shoeing halter horses, hunter
jumpers and three-day eventers
really prepared me for what I'm
doing now at UF," Whitehead said.
"I always had a lot of interest in
lameness, but it's so difficult outside
of a clinical setting to do long-term
"Here at UF, the conditions are
L f l
suitable for me to do more. We have
the technology and the knowledge of
the veterinarians here and I'm able to
build on that knowledge and focus
on what I really enjoy doing."
Whitehead also said he enjoys
working and exchanging information
with veterinary students.
About 80 percent of the horses
eaa snows on a complete nooT Delonging to Mercury, a b-year-ola gelaing
feet. This photo was taken after the third shoeing by Whitehead following b
k desmotomy a surgery performed by UF large animal surgeons to help trea
Whitehead sees at UF have some type
of lameness-related or hoof problem.
"These cases are different than what
I'd typically see out in the field, and
I've seen more interesting cases in the
time I've been here than in the nine
or 10 years I was working previ-
ously," he said.
This is largely because of UF's tech-
nological capabilities and the collab-
orative relationship Whitehead said
he has with large animal medicine
and surgery service clinicians.
"Adam is a tremendous asset to
the equine program here at UF,"
said Jason Errico, a large animal
surgery resident. "He helps us
complete our initial treatment plan
when farrier work is required and
offers continued services at the
university for therapeutic
shoeing and lameness man-
Errico called Whitehead
"a very skilled farrier with
great ideas and a team-
oriented approach toward
"Our clients have had
nothing but great things
to say about him and his
work," Errico added.
Whitehead is anxious
to garner support for
expanding the farrier
Program to include a
Mobile service similar
to the college's Mobile
Equine Diagnostic Service.
Meanwhile, as word
of his services carries,
Whitehead hopes to attract
more business to make
expansion possible and
to fulfill his ultimate goal
the creation of a UFVMC
Equine Podiatry Center.
"This would be a
program that would offer
with an innovative approach to
bilateral equine lameness and hoof
it care," Whitehead said.
"Once we build a large
client base and a reputation for
state-of-the-art care, the Equine
Podiatry Center will become a
service synomous with long-term
care of laminitus and equine
Anyone seeking more informa-
tion about the UFVMC's farrier
service should call Whitehead at
(352) 392-4700, ext. 4171 or e-mail
6 6. .
Exotic Pathology Service now available
By SARAH CAREY
A new Exotics Pathology service
focused on the non-domestic
species seen most frequently by
private practitioners is now available
at the University of Florida College
of Veterinary Medicine.
Led by Lisa Farina, D.V.M., a '99
alumna of the college and a board-
certified anatomic pathologist, the
service aims to provide comprehen- .....
sive anatomic pathology services for Dr. Lisa Farina
exotic animal veterinary practitio-
ners, including histopathology and complete necropsies.
Commonly owned exotic pets include hamsters, gerbils,
guinea pigs, rats, ferrets, rabbits, birds, reptiles, amphib-
ians, fish and primates.
"Often practitioners have clients with many animals
in their collections and they want to know if a particular
disease has made its way into that group," said Farina,
who completed her residency in anatomic pathology
at UF in 2001. She then performed a fellowship at the
University of Illinois Zoological Pathology Program,
which provides pathology services for Brookfield Zoo,
Lincoln Park Zoo and the Shedd Aquarium, as well as
other zoological institutions and wildlife groups.
Now on the faculty in the Department of Infectious
Diseases and Pathology, Farina also serves as the
pathologist for the American Zoological Association's
Chiropteran Taxon Advisory Group and Rodrigues
Island flying fox Species Survival Plan.
Anyone seeking information about this service may
call Dr. Farina at (352) 392-4700, ext. 5814 or go to: www.
Honors wl CWrie
Administrator, faculty member rise in AAEP
E leanor Green, D.V.M., chair
of the department of large
animal clinical sciences, and
Dana Zimmel, D.V.M., assistant
professor of equine extension, have
advanced in the leadership ranks
of the Association of American
Green, who also serves as chief
of staff of UF's Large Animal
Hospital, has been selected at
Dr. Eleanor Green the 2006 vice president of the
American Association of Equine Practitioners. Zimmel
will become a member of AAEP's board of directors. The
two officially began their new posts during the AAEP's
annual convention, held Dec. 3-7 in Seattle.
As vice president, Green becomes the first female
practitioner to serve on AAEP's
executive committee and will
ascend to the AAEP presidency in
2008. Board-certified by both the
American College of Veterinary
Internal Medicine and the
American Board of Veterinary
Practitioners, Green is a past
president of the ABVP and also
of the American Association of
Dr. Dana Zimmel Zimmel serves as a clinical
faculty member in the large animal medicine service in
addition to her extension duties. She is dually board-
certified by both the ACVIM and the ABVP. Zimmel
currently is the faculty advisor for the AAEP student
chapter at UF. k
Dairy veterinarian receives UF's Blue Key Award
Carlos Risco, D.V.M., received
the 2005 Florida Blue Key
Distinguished Faculty award along
with five other University of Florida
faculty members at the Education
Celebration luncheon on Sept. 28,
A professor in the UF College of
Veterinary Medicine's department
of large animal clinical sciences,
Risco is a board-certified therio-
genologist (animal reproduction
specialist) and an internationally recognized lecturer
on dairy cattle. He was chosen for the award because of
his dedication to the university, research, students and
the greater Gainesville community, said Matthew Wein,
Homecoming general chairman.
In 2005, Risco received the UF veterinary college
Alumni Council's Distinguished Alumni Award and
also the college's Carl Norden Award for Distinguished
Teaching. In 2004, Risco completed a three-month
Fulbright Fellowship to further his research into postpar-
tum problems of dairy cows in Argentina. I
6 6. IPPF- 11 ff
Dr. arlos ... isco
Dr. Carlos Risco
Thoroughbred filly has new lease
on life thanks to rescuers
And UF large animal surgeons
By SARAH CAREY
A Thoroughbred filly named
Squirt born "knock-kneed"
- with deformed joints faced eutha-
nasia at the young age of 6 weeks
but now runs and plays at her home
Squirt turned out for the first time after all surgeries had
farm like the healthy
pet she is, thanks
to the horse lovers
who rescued her and
to surgeons at the
University of Florida
After a series of
between May and
August at UF,
ties appear to have
her proud owner,
Giovanna King of
nt knees prior to surgery. Live Oak.
"She is continuing
to gain weight and grow muscle,"
King said. "When I look at her now
and compare pictures of her then and
now, she just looks like an entirely
King said she and her husband,
Mike, unexpectedly gained posses-
sion of the filly in mid-May, when a
friend called after visiting a breeding
farm in Ocala.
"She said, 'I'm going to be bringing
you a baby,'" King recalled. "I
said, 'no way, I don't want another
horse.'" The Kings own Beaver Creek
Farm and own several horses they
have rescued over the years as well
as other horses they breed and sell.
But King's friend told her, "Don't
worry, you'll want this one."
King's friend told her that the filly's
mother had been sold by the farm
owner, but the buyers did not want
the foal because of her limb deformi-
"She actually overheard the farm
hands talking about taking this filly
back behind the barn to shoot her,"
After she heard the full story and
saw the filly, King's attitude changed.
"This filly's knees were totally
together and she was unable to run
because she'd trip and fall," King
A regular client of UF's VMC, King
knew right away that the filly would
require specialized treatment.
As it turned out, several surgeries
were required to fully address the
problems with Squirt's legs. Dr. Troy
Trumble served as the attending
clinician during all of the procedures,
supervising residents Dr. Nicholas
Ernst, Dr. Aric Adams and Dr.
Sarah Matyjaszek and walking them
through each operation.
"The technical diagnosis was that
Squirt had bilateral carpal valgus
with the right leg worse than the
left, and bilateral tarsal valgus with
the left leg worse than the right,"
Trumble explained. "These are both
very common conformational issues
in foals that are thought to be due to
prematurity/ immaturity, abnormal
positioning in utero, in utero
chemical insults, hormonal or nutri-
The carpus is called the "knee" in
lay language, hence the term "knock-
Angular limb deformities are
defined based on looking at the front
legs from directly in front of the foal,
or the hind legs from directly behind
Squirt's deformity was due to
abnormalities surrounding her
growth plate, Trumble said, and was
treated surgically in two procedures,
one on each leg. In a procedure
known as transphyseal bridging, a
screw was placed across the growth
plate at the right knee to slow bone
growth on that side. In the left hock,
a procedure known as hemicir-
cumferential periosteal transaction
(commonly known as periosteal
stripping) was performed to enhance
bone growth. The net effect would
ideally be for the load on both legs to
"even out," facilitating the straighten-
ing of both legs.
The right knee improved over a
period of several weeks, but the left
hock did not, Trumble said.
"Therefore at the time of screw
removal for the right carpus (knee),
we performed a transphyseal
bridging at the left tarsus (hock),"
Trumble said. "The deviation at that
site then improved over the next
several weeks and one final surgery
was needed to remove the screw."
The transformation in Squirt
from the first visit to the last screw
removal was very impressive, not
just in how the legs corrected, but
also in Squirt's entire appearance and
demeanor, the surgeon added.
"I can see what Giovanna sees in
this filly, as she is a very curious and
amiable horse," Trumble said. "Each
time I tried to examine her legs in the
stall, she would just walk right up to
me and she snuggles right up next
to you. You can't help but like her. I
hope that Squirt and Giovanna have
many long years together."
King said Squirt was "growing like
a weed" and picking up weight.
"She's with me and she's not going
anywhere," King said. "All of us
here, we're so attached to her. She
follows us around like a puppy."
6 e 6. .
Advanced imaging capability on its way at VMC
Veterinarians at the University
of Florida will soon advance
their capabilities for diagnosing
disease in dogs, cats, horses and
other animal patients thanks to a
sophisticated new imaging package
made possible in part by a $400,000
contribution from horse racing aficio-
nado and New York Yankees owner
The College of Veterinary Medicine
is in the process of purchasing a
new four-slice computed tomogra-
phy (CT) scanner and a magnetic
resonance imaging (MRI) unit from
Toshiba. Used separately or in com-
bination, the equipment will greatly
enhance the center's imaging capa-
The new imaging equipment,
valued at approximately $2 million, is
expected to be installed by late spring
of 2006. The college will cover costs
over and beyond the Steinbrenner
UF's new CT scanner will be one of
the first of its type in the country to
be used in veterinary applications.
The new machine will upgrade tech-
nological capabilities at the Center to
include high resolution half-millime-
ter images for veterinarians to better
view fractures, tumors and other
lesions or abnormalities.
Other bells and whistles associ-
ated with the new equipment will
be three-dimensional needle biopsy
capability, bone densitometry and
radiation planning software. The
scanner has an extra large gantry --
the doughnut shaped hole into which
animals are placed for the procedure
-- which will improve veterinarians'
ability to examine horses.
Because it provides detailed,
cross-sectional views of all types of
tissue and is faster, CT is one of the
best tools for studying the chest and
abdomen. It is often the preferred
method for diagnosing many
different cancers, including lung,
liver and pancreatic cancer, since the
image CT creates allows clinicians to
confirm the presence of a tumor and
measure its size, precise location and
the extent of the tumor's involvement
with nearby tissue.
The MRI is a brand new 1.5 tesla
short bore superconducting magnet
similar to what one finds at human
hospitals and imaging centers. A
large field of view made possible
through the MRI unit will allow UF
veterinarians to perform whole spine
or body examinations on most dogs
and smaller pets through a single
view, which will result in less anes-
thesia time. Its larger-than-normal
opening and short length will allow
the unit to be used to examine horses,
in which MRI can be especially useful
for diagnosing tendon and ligament
MRI offers one of the
best diagnostic exami-
nations available for
imaging many types
of soft tissues such as
the brain, neck, heart,
spine and hips as well as
being useful for evaluat- L
ing blood vessels. MRI
imaging provides detailed
contrast between different
Shown is the Toshiba Vantage 1.5T
tissues with similar MRI. Vantage's industry leading
densities, which makes platform provides the prerequisites
image quality important. necessary to perform all state-of-
"Mr. Steinbrenner's the-art imaging techniques.
gracious gift will allow the radiology
faculty to provide state-of-the-art
equine imaging for in-house clients,
as well for referring veterinar-
ians who wish to send patients for
advanced imaging studies only," said
Margaret Blaik, D.V.M., a board-
certified radiologist and assistant
professor at UF's Veterinary college.
Gardner from pg. 1
handy for continuity of care," said
Gardner, a father of two and husband
to Lisa, a registered nurse and coordi-
nator of education at Watson Clinic in
Because of these records, Gardner
and his staff are able to tell when the
birds gain or lose weight, or develop
other problems such as heart murmurs
"Occasionally, there is vandalism
or abuse and the microchips come in
handy for prosecution because they
prove the swans are owned by the
city," Gardner said.
Swans are so much a part of
Lakeland history and culture that they
are represented in the city's logo and
visible in other city projects, as well as
the names of certain hotels.
"They have almost become a
symbol for the city of Lakeland,"
Gardner said. "The swans have become
something the community focuses on
and gets behind."
In addition to his hands-on work
with swans, Gardner has shared what
he's learned with others. In 2003, Swan
Keeper's Handbook, a Guide to the
Care of Captive Swans was published,
a collaborative work involving Gardner
as lead author and dedicated to
Gardner called the book's publica-
tion "a personal milestone" and said it
contained literally everything he and
his father had done for years relating to
"Dad had taken notes and they were
stuffed everywhere. He just had a
wealth of experience so it was neat
to see it all put down on paper," said
Gardner, adding that he receives e-
mails regularly from all over the world
asking about how to care for swans.
"People will say they have this
problem or that problem, and it's pretty
neat to be able to help them," he said,
adding, "There's a great lack of infor-
mation out there."
Gardner was a key member
of a team of swan research-
ers who pioneered the use
of a cattle vaccine against
botulism and an equine
West Nile Virus vaccine in
swans. In January, that team
received the prestigious
U.S. Daily Point of Light
Award, presented by the
Points of Light Foundation in
Washington, D.C. Dr. Geoffrey R. Gardner
The Point of Light award is works with a mute swan.
the nation's top volunteer award.
Volunteering is a way of life and a
mindset for Gardner, who charges the
City of Lakeland nothing for his swan
"For me, it's a way of giving
something back to the city," he said.
"Dad said he'd never send them
another bill if they'd just take care of
the birds like he said they should and
in return this gentleman's agreement
has worked out really well." O
6 6. -
UF veterinary student in the money at NAVC
M andi Schmidt, a fourth-year
student at the University of
Florida, won second place at the fourth
annual Nestl6 Purina College Challenge,
held January 7-11 during the North
American Veterinary Conference
(NAVC) in Orlando, Fla. During the
four-day veterinary trivia challenge,
26 students from 26 veterinary colleges
answered questions on topics ranging
from anatomy to internal medicine.
"The competition was a lot of fun," Schmidt said.
"The questions you get are random some were hard,
but others were really simple." For example, she added,
"The question that asked 'What agent is most commonly
found in goat abscesses' was an easy one, but some of the
questions on microbiology were hard."
Schmidt is planning an academic internship followed
by a cardiac residency. For her win, she received a $2,000
cash prize and a matching grant to the University of
Florida's Student Chapter of the American Veterinary
Medical Association (SCAVMA).4
Calendartsl- Tr Veerri
Party in the Jungle for the Love of Animals, a fun-filled evening benefit for the UF CVM, will be held at
Parrot Jungle Island in Miami beginning at 7 p.m. The jungle fun includes cocktails, exotic offerings to
please your palate, an auction, interaction with animals, fancy desserts, dancing, and entertainment by
Marty Becker, D.V.M., co-author of Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul. Contact Sunshine Andrei at
firstname.lastname@example.org or at 352-392-4700, ext. 5200.
The CVM Golf Classic will take place with a 1 p.m. shotgun start at Haile Plantation Golf and Country
Club in Gainesville. All proceeds benefit the college and D.V.M. student scholarship funds.
The annual college Open House sponsored by the Student Chapter of the American Veterinary
Medical Association, will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, contact Sarah Carey
at email@example.com or call (352) 392-4700, ext. 5206.
UF's Spring Weekend, which includes the traditional Orange & Blue game, will be held and members
of the college's Class of '81 will be honored for their 25-year graduation anniversary. Activities TBA.
Contact Jo Ann Winn at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (352) 392-4700, ext. 5013.
p,* !UNIVERSITY OF
College of Veterinary Medicine
P.O. Box 100125
Gainesville, FL 32610-0125
Address Service Requested