Pandemic Puts Strain on Pet Care Providers

Unless your pet is sick or injured, it could be weeks before you can make an appointment with your veterinarian.

Vets were unable to provide routine care during Michigan’s stay-at-home order. When it was lifted in June, many clinics prioritized their appointments, scheduling things like vaccinations later in the summer.

Dr. Melissa Owings is the president of the Michigan Veterinary Medical Association. She says the COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for doctors and technicians at her clinic, Kibby Park Animal Hospital in Jackson.

Meet MVMA’s New President

As the current MVMA President, I could not be more honored to serve both our members and the Michigan veterinary community in this capacity. Over the years, this profession, my leadership roles within the MVMA and fellow members have been a great source of happiness and fulfillment in my life. This has continuously fueled my desire to serve and give back in a multitude of ways. In my new role, I look forward to the evolution of the MVMA as we strategically enhance our offerings to match the needs of our profession. Beyond working to improve our CME, conferences, communications and member resources, my tenure will include an emphasis on health and wellness for veterinarians and their staff members. As a veterinarian and practice owner, I have faced personal and professional challenges that have led me to reframe my chosen career path on a continuous basis. This fluidity, along with the camaraderie of fellow veterinarians in the Jackson community, have been the driving forces in my ability to thrive in a world where we have a significant risk of burnout, compassion fatigue, depression, and suicide. As a leader in the organization, I care deeply about our profession and those who serve in it.

Member Spotlight – Melissa Owings, DVM

When you ask Dr. Owings why she chose veterinary medicine as a career, she immediately responds that veterinary medicine is about people as well as pets. She obviously has a passion for both. Her respect for people has helped grow her relationship with clients and grow her practice, too. About 12 years ago when she purchased her practice, her team was a veterinary technician and 3-4 other staff members. She now has about 20 employees. Dr. Owings was not actively looking to become a practice own- er, but she had an Aha! moment when she was helping a colleague sell a practice. The practice for sale was the practice where she spent time observing before heading to veterinary school. It just seemed right that she should become the new owner.