It seems like people spend a lot of time these days focused on what is wrong with the world. In some ways, this is beneficial. If we don’t face our problems, we can’t do anything to improve our situations. Conflict can be a strong impetus for change.

At the risk of sounding sappy, however, there is also an awful lot that is right with the world. What better time than Thanksgiving to express a little gratitude for what we have, or for the plain ol’ good luck that has come our way over the last year?

So how about a challenge for this Thanksgiving week? Respond to this blog with something pet-related that you are thankful for. I won’t be posting anything on Thanksgiving itself, but sometime in between over-indulging on pumpkin pie, football, and work (yes, I’m on call this year … I can’t say I’m too thankful about that!), I’m going to log on to Fully Vetted and take a look at the replies for a dose of good cheer.

I’ll get us started with a few of my own.

I am thankful that despite the fact that all four of my animals are dealing with chronic diseases (hyperthyroidism, hyperthyroidism and chronic kidney disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and chronic sinusitis), Victoria, Keelor, Apollo, and Atticus are currently all doing fabulously well and enjoying life to its fullest with minimal medical intervention.

I am thankful for having shared my life with animal-friends who have taught me invaluable lessons about love, patience, tenacity, dignity, and joy-in-life. Rover, Tangles, Owen, Duncan, Boomer, Annie, Jethro, P.D., Harper, Pippen and Fugly, you are missed but still loved so very much.

Thank you to whoever was looking out for us the day my horse bolted away from a fox and crossed a busy road without me as he galloped back to the barn. It was truly miraculous that all the drivers saw him in time to prevent anyone (horse or human) from being hurt.

And finally, thanks to all of you who make Fully Vetted such a remarkable forum for sharing information about the fascinating world of veterinary medicine.

Dr. Jennifer Coates

Image: smile dog 1 by corpseous / via Flickr