At Total Veterinary Care®, we seek to fill our hospital teams with individuals who will uphold our core values of trustworthiness, professionalism, and quality care for the animals of our community. We think our team members are pretty amazing people, and we believe you will too when you hear their stories! We’ll be featuring a different employee every month on our blog to share with you about the amazing people we have caring for your furry companions.
This month’s featured team member is Veronica Pence, a Veterinary Assistant at our Grove City, Ohio location.
Veronica knew she wanted to be in veterinary medicine from a very young age. Her friends and family were originally baffled by her dream of being a vet because of a rather traumatic experience in her childhood – when she was five-years-old, she received a nasty bite on her face from her babysitter’s dog. This encounter left her with stitches and a fear of dogs, but more importantly and perhaps most surprisingly, a desire to help injured animals. Leaving the E.R. with tears still in her eyes, she told her mom she wanted to be a vet. Years later, in a determined effort to get over her fear of dogs, she volunteered at Capital Area Humane Society. She helped to socialize animals at the shelter – taking them on walks and runs, which gave them an outlet for their energy. As her fear of dogs disappeared and her love of animals grew, she developed a passion for giving dogs better lives. She loves her job at Total Veterinary Care® because she is able to assist veterinarians in helping patients and their owners navigate difficult times. She is always willing to offer insights to pet parents and support them in any way she is able.
We asked Veronica if she had a favorite of a memory of caring for animals, and her response was so touching we wanted to share it with you in her own words:
“My favorite memory of working with animals was actually in my first year of college. A nest of squirrels was washed out during a storm and mom was sadly killed by a vehicle leaving the two babies to fend for themselves. We called every place we could get a number for but no one would take them in so I reluctantly took them home. They barely had their eyes open, covered in fleas and one was sneezing with nasal discharge. I was able to get medication and get the little one through an upper respiratory infection and still get them to eat and grow. Based on the classes and the school I was attending, and because they ate every 3-4 hours, I was able to take them school with me. My professor actually loved seeing them sitting on my shoulders during class! Eventually, once they were starting to eat on their own I was able to wean them off me, I would hide food in their cage and handled them very little, and when I did I had gloves. I was able to teach them to scavenge for food and start to fear other animals, including humans (me), to prepare them to be released into the wild. I don't think I will ever forget being able to study at school with baby squirrels in my hoodie pocket, but I wouldn't recommend it to everyone because it is a lot of work and comes with many risks. Thankfully there are more organizations out there now that can now help with these type of situations.”
Veronica has continued to open her arms to animals over the years. Her current pet, a 12-year-old Chihuahua named Olivia (Livy for short), emerged from a background of neglect and malnutrition, weighing merely three pounds when she came into Veronica’s care. Now, Livy is a happy, healthy tail-wagger who loves and cares for her family. It seems no matter where she goes, Veronica brings happiness to animals.
When she is not enriching the lives of animals, Veronica enriches her own life with her many hobbies. Known as the “crafty one” in her office, she enjoys finding things to make and build, such as donation jars, jewelry, and chair covers. She has dabbled in photography, writing, and various outdoor activities. Recently, she joined a group for lost pets, called Pet FBI Ohio, where she helps reunite lost pets and their owners. She also loves taking care of her two boys. In addition to all of this, Veronica is also working on her degree in Veterinary Technology at Penn Foster to go alongside her Bachelor’s in Healthcare Administration from Ashford University.
Veronica’s passion for animals and her nurturing heart makes her a valuable member of the Total Veterinary Care® family and we are proud to count her among our team.