In a tearful post, a veterinarian shares just how emotionally draining the job really is.
Tracy Lee Richardson/Facebook, Marliese Streefland on Unsplash

Many animal-loving kids grow up thinking they want to be veterinarians, imagining that working with cute and cuddly critters all day long must be a dream job.

But the reality of being a vet isn't a whole lot different than the reality of being a doctor for humans. You have to have about the same amount of schooling, but you have to know about the biology of many different species. And while helping animals can certainly be rewarding, the truth is that a lot of a vet's job isn't all cuddles and cuteness.

Veterinarian Tracy Lee Richardson shared a story from particularly hard day on Facebook to help people understand what vets go through.


"I always post pictures of puppies," she wrote. "So many of you might think that my job is all rainbows and butterflies. However in reality, it can be the exact opposite.

Today I had to euthanize a very sick dog. During the process, the owner had his son on FaceTime who started to sing a song that he had written for the dog. It was absolutely beautiful. Tears immediately ran down my face, almost in sync with his guitar. I sat in the room with the other family members and just cried my heart out with them.

Unfortunately, that's not the hard part. I had to eventually leave the room, finish crying in the bathroom and then recompose myself to head into the next exam room. I was praying for my next patient to be a new puppy to brighten my spirits, but it was another sick dog on the brink of euthanasia as well.

This is a HUGE reason the suicide rate is extremely high in my profession. So please always be kind to your veterinarian and veterinary staff. Our jobs are much harder than we give off.

I absolutely love my job. I do not regret becoming a veterinarian, but there are just some days it sucks."

Many people may not realize that the suicide rate for veterinarians is high. In fact, female vets are about 3.5 times more likely to die by suicide than the general population. Some of it is the depressing nature of the euthanasia aspect of the job. But in addition to compassion fatigue, vets are also often mistreated by their patients' owners. People don't like having to pay for medications or services for animals, and vets report consistently being asked to have fees waived. When you're dealing with huge medical school debt and then have customers get angry because they don't want to pay you, it's rough.

So be kind to your vet and their staff. They're likely dealing with a lot more stress than we realize.

True
Back Market

Between the new normal that is working from home and e-learning for students of all ages, having functional electronic devices is extremely important. But that doesn't mean needing to run out and buy the latest and greatest model. In fact, this cycle of constantly upgrading our devices to keep up with the newest technology is an incredibly dangerous habit.

The amount of e-waste we produce each year is growing at an increasing rate, and the improper treatment and disposal of this waste is harmful to both human health and the planet.

So what's the solution? While no one expects you to stop purchasing new phones, laptops, and other devices, what you can do is consider where you're purchasing them from and how often in order to help improve the planet for future generations.

Keep Reading Show less

Biases, stereotypes, prejudices—these byproducts of the human brain's natural tendency to generalize and categorize have been a root cause of most of humanity's problems for, well, pretty much ever. None of us is immune to those tendencies, and since they can easily slip in unnoticed, we all have to be aware of where, when, and how they impact our own beliefs and actions.

It also helps when someone upends a stereotype by saying or doing something unexpected.

Fair or not, certain parts of the U.S. are associated with certain cultural assumptions, perhaps none more pinholed than the rural south. When we hear Appalachia, a certain stereotype probably pops up in our minds—probably white, probably not well educated, probably racist. Even if there is some basis to a stereotype, we must always remember that human beings can never be painted with such broad strokes.

Enter Tyler Childers, a rising country music star whose old-school country fiddling has endeared him to a broad audience, but his new album may have a different kind of reach. "Long Violent History" was released Friday, along with a video message to his white rural fans explaining the culminating track by the same name. Watch it here:

Keep Reading Show less
True
Back Market

Between the new normal that is working from home and e-learning for students of all ages, having functional electronic devices is extremely important. But that doesn't mean needing to run out and buy the latest and greatest model. In fact, this cycle of constantly upgrading our devices to keep up with the newest technology is an incredibly dangerous habit.

The amount of e-waste we produce each year is growing at an increasing rate, and the improper treatment and disposal of this waste is harmful to both human health and the planet.

So what's the solution? While no one expects you to stop purchasing new phones, laptops, and other devices, what you can do is consider where you're purchasing them from and how often in order to help improve the planet for future generations.

Keep Reading Show less

The legality of abortion is one of the most polarized debates in America—but it doesn’t have to be.

People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women’s rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

Then there are those of us in the messy middle. Those who believe that life begins at conception, that abortion isn’t something we’d choose—and we’d hope others wouldn’t choose—under most circumstances, yet who choose to vote to keep abortion legal.

Keep Reading Show less
@frajds / Twitter

Father Alek Schrenk is known as one of the "9 Priests You Need to Follow on Twitter." He proved his social media skills Sunday night after finding a creepy note on a parked car and weaving a lurid Twitter tale that kept his followers on the edge of their pews.

Father Schrenk was making his nightly walk of the church grounds to make sure everything was fine before retiring to the rectory, when he found a car parked by itself in front of the school.

Curious, he looked inside the car and saw a note that made his "blood run cold" attached to the steering wheel. "Look in trunk!" the note read. What made it extra creepy was that the two Os in "look" had smiley faces.

Keep Reading Show less