Riverside Animal Hospital Veterinarians Are By Our Side with Dedication and Devotion

When mental and physical health are in the front of our minds, pets are by our side with their unconditional love and support. To keep our furry friends likewise healthy, the best advocate at our side is a trusted veterinarian. At Riverside Animal Hospital, Drs. Jessica Casey, Sarah Cummings, Victoria Karshner, Cody Menasco and Debbie Putnam have been busier than ever to keep us all healthy during challenging times. They share some of the reasons they practice veterinary medicine and have gratitude for their clients and patients:

“Family has always been a very important key component in my life. From day one, I have always been thankful that my co-workers at Riverside have felt like family. In these last few months, I have seen my co-workers as well as patients in a new light and appreciation.  Because of social distancing, our clients have had to entrust us with their dear family members. The trust they gave us, to pass off one of their beloved family members knowing they could not be there has humbled me. Then to see the staff rise up and be that “family member” for the pet inside the building has been amazing. To be part of our clients’ extended family, to have their trust in a time of worry and sickness, and to be able to provide the best quality medicine for these family members is why I know on a daily basis I have picked the perfect profession for me. I am honored that my clients entrusted me in their family's care, thankful to work beside some amazing people and I am so glad I get the chance to have such a large, loving extended family.”

Dr. Cody Menasco, DVM 

“Every day I go to work, I am reminded that this is where I am meant to be. These reminders show up in the most unusual places, and at the most unexpected times: It is the elderly client who thanks us for going out to the car to get their pet so that we minimize their possible exposure to COVID. Sometimes, I am reminded when I see a client who was finally able to get a new puppy or kitten after losing a beloved pet. Even on the hardest days, there are little reminders everywhere that this is the work I was meant to do.”

Dr. Debbie Putnam, DVM

“Pets have played such an important role in helping to maintain the mental and physical health of their human companions as COVID-19 wreaked havoc on our daily routines, social connections, financial security, and even feelings of personal safety. Through it all, our cats remain largely blasé, while dogs remind us it is possible to find uninhibited joy in so many small things–and all were comfortingly, physically present in a time of social isolation. One example in particular stands out: A young couple moved to Bend from Hood River just a few months before “lockdown.” This very driven, and very social pair were looking forward to becoming established in their careers here and joining groups and activities that would help them make friends. Instead, they found themselves isolated and at loose ends. Luckily, one of their big plans for life in Bend was not foiled: The adoption of a puppy! They brought Sage, an eight-week-old Husky/Akita mix, home on February 22nd. Her training, antics, and need for both exercise and routine kept them busy and sane, and provided a source of uplifting stories to share over video conferences with family and friends. I’m not sure there is anything more therapeutic than snuggling a gorgeous kitten or puppy—except maybe snuggling a furry loyal companion of many years!”

Dr. Jessica Casey, DVM

“As a new graduate out of veterinary school I entered an extremely demanding, intense surgical, emergency and critical care internship. I was afraid that I wasn't ready, I was afraid that I wouldn't know what to do. On my first night in the ER, five emergencies presented at once.  As I triaged them and started treatments, all the patients stabilized, improved and were on their road to recovery. I remember thinking that it was magical: I could implement the things I had learned in veterinary school, apply them to these patients and they “magically” got better.  I still feel that sense of "magic" as I treat patients today. I feel that God put me on this earth to touch people through their pets. I make a difference not only in animals' lives, but I can deeply touch the lives of their humans as I practice my craft.  I can't imagine doing anything else.”

Dr. Victoria Karshner, DVM

“I cannot say enough good things about my co-workers, our clients, and our community. The patience and appreciation displayed during a challenging time has been tremendous, and has been the silver lining to an otherwise constant stream of uncertainty. We had high-risk clients who did not leave their home for any reason for three weeks, visit us to get their pet veterinary care and thank us profusely for being here.  We’ve witnessed clients paying others’ veterinary bills—complete strangers—so that a pet could receive the care it needed and the owner would have one less burden during this difficult time. To be in a profession that is all about supporting the human-animal bond, and to see how much our community values that bond, even during challenging times, fills my heart.”

Dr. Sarah Cummings, DVM 

Riverside Animal Hospital

25 NW Olney Ave., Bend




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