Ithaca’s own Dr. Goldberg has launched the Veterinary Society for Hospice & Palliative Care with her close friend & colleague, Dr. Page Yaxley of Michigan State University. This is the only professional veterinary organization dedicated to the advancement of hospice & palliative care, and is laying the groundwork for recognition as a boarded veterinary specialty. Dr. Goldberg is proud to have her hospice roots in Ithaca, home of the first residential hospice facility in NY state for people, Hospicare & Palliative Care Services of Tompkins County. Compassionate, progressive end-of-life care is far-reaching in this community, for both people & pets!
Dr. Katherine Goldberg founded Whole Animal with a mission to provide home-based, bond-centered veterinary care with a focus on geriatric support and hospice services. It is Dr. Goldberg’s belief that our relationships with animals are particularly poignant during end of life care. Her belief in the importance of whole body care rather than symptom-specific treatment is an underlying philosophy of the entire practice.
Because they have special needs! Whole Animal is proud to be the only veterinary practice in our region exclusively dedicated to this unique time in our pets’ lives.
Meet Jessica, one of our poster dogs for geriatric care: Jessica is 15 years young, & living well, thanks to her dedicated family and comprehensive in-home care with Whole Animal. Like many geriatric dogs, she has some mobility issues from osteoarthritis as well as minor neurologic impairment in her hind limbs, and some kidney dysfunction. Fortunately, she doesn’t seem to mind, with her integrative pain management plan, including medications & physical therapy, as well as good nutrition and a plan to manage mild cognitive dysfunction.Read More...
I am excited to announce that Whole Animal is now:
The new name more accurately reflects Whole Animal’s mission, and emphasizes the unique, focused care that I am dedicated to providing for our community. As many of you know, since 2013, Whole Animal has not provided any general wellness services. It is my goal to support the relationships that our local general wellness veterinarians have with their patients, and become a trusted referral partner with them as pets age.
Together we can change the way pets age and die in our community. We are already doing it, thanks to all of you! Please share your experiences and spread the word.
Katherine Goldberg, DVMRead More...
Women Swimmin’ for Hospicare raises over $390,000!
This astounding fundraising event that provides direct support to Hospicare & Palliative Care Services of Tompkins County was a sight to behold on Saturday!
300 women and a flotilla of support boaters claimed Cayuga Lake as their very own, inspiring all who witnessed the event to believe that when communities come together, anything is possible. Dr. Goldberg made her way across the lake sponsored by many members of the Whole Animal community, raising $2000 towards the staggering total. Additionally, Whole Animal was a very proud corporate sponsor of the event, emphasizing that good death & dying (as well as sustaining exemplary quality of life until the very end) for both people and animals are linked. A hearty THANK YOU to all who supported this event. May we continue our mission of living fully and dying peacefully – whether furred, feathered, finned, or skinned.
“You matter until the last moment of your life. You matter, because you are…” –Dame Cicely Saunders
Today I had the honor of supporting some dear friends through the palliated, but not hastened, dying process of their cat. She was the ultimate “tough girl” – a barn cat turned beloved family member, a creature who resisted medical interventions at every turn, at one time requiring 3 people to do the typically 1 person job of subcutaneous fluid administration. An elderly lady who ultimately succumbed to severe kidney failure and concurrent liver compromise, she was appropriately given a grave prognosis. Her caregivers were given the options of referral to a 24-hour care facility, or euthanasia – appropriate recommendations, given her condition. But when they responded: “We don’t feel comfortable with either of those. What are our other options?” the traditional paradigm of veterinary end-of-life care was challenged.Read More...
This week, I had the interesting experience of being told that vets have been doing this kind of work for eons, and that hospice & palliative care for pets is really nothing new. As an educator in this field, and passionate changemaker for end-of-life care for animals & their families, I found this comment really striking. IS hospice & palliative care anything new? Or is it, as was suggested, just something that the younger generation of veterinarians is now marketing? I would emphatically argue that it is, in fact, something quite distinct from our traditional veterinary care for aging & dying pets.Read More...