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Of Cats, DR And Reader Responses


Oscar the cat livened up the news recently after a geriatrician at a Rhode Island nursing home wrote of the animal's unique service in the New England Journal of Medicine.

David M. Dosa, M.D., M.P.H., wrote a simple and touching essay about how the cat avoids patients until their time is near. Then, within hours of death, Oscar curls up beside the patient, purring and nuzzling him.

Staff takes this as a sign of impending death and notifies the families, who often come to the bedside to be there when their loved one passes. When the patient breathes his last, Oscar leaves the room. Some patients would die alone were it not for Oscar.

News reports about Oscar inundated the media over the weekend news cycle. Less often seen was the original essay. We are happy to reprint that article on Page 23. A photo of Oscar appears on Page 30 with Dr. Alice Villalobos' column, The Bond and Beyond, in which she writes of many animal exploits that we don't yet fully understand.

Managing Editor Somyr McLean Perry talked to practitioners of exotics and zoo medicine about the vistas being opened as digital radiography moves into their domain. Her report begins on the cover.

For our readers who have hobby-farm clients, D. Phillip Sponenberg, DVM, writes about the care of rare goats and sheep on Page 36.

Once again, our readers have answered the call! We asked you what advice you would offer to graduating veterinarians. Some of your responses appear on Page 2; we will run additional answers in a later issue, so if you haven't responded yet, there's still time. Send your replies to sperry@bowtieinc.com.

Are there other topics you'd like to propose to your colleagues? E-mail your ideas to miturri@bowtieinc.com.


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