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wellington | health

Veterinarian Dr. Christina Herejk Brings An Integrated Approach To Helping Local Animals Story by Deborah Welky • Photo by Julie Unger

Sometimes human medicine’s loss is veterinary medicine’s gain. Such is the case with local veterinarian Dr. Christina Herejk of the Royal Palm Veterinary Center. “As is the case with many veterinarians, I was completely in awe of animals and nature as a child,” Herejk recalled. “My mother was a nurse, so I grew up hearing great stories about medicine. I was considering working with humans, but my mother suggested that I might be better off going into animal medicine.” It has been a passion she has followed ever since. “Once I had my first dog, I fell in love with the profession,” Herejk said. “I loved the fact that I could work with both animals and people, the animals’ owners.” She attended the University of Florida in Gainesville for both her undergraduate and veterinary degrees, graduating in 2005. She worked with Dr. Richard Ringler, who established the Royal Palm Animal Hospital more than 25 years ago, taking over his practice in 2013. At the Royal Palm Veterinary Center, Herejk is continuing Ringler’s mission to help animals in the community. “We are all about providing good care to our patients and clients, taking the reins from the late Dr. Ringler to continue his life’s work,” Herejk said. Dogs and cats continue to be the center’s primary focus. “In addition to annual wellness examinations and vaccinations, we treat a variety of problems,” Herejk said. “We deal with a number of geriatric problems, such as osteoarthritis and kidney disease, as well as skin problems. I love dermatology, and I have started to venture into integrated medicine — cold laser therapy, veterinary acupuncture.” Integrated medicine is an alternative approach to treating the patient, taught at the Chi Institute just outside Gainesville, which specializes in traditional Chinese veterinary medicine. “We’re taking what we’ve been trained to do in school and combining it with other modalities for the most optimal results for our patients’ health,” Herejk explained. “Sometimes western medicine is great, but it doesn’t hit it on the head. Being able to have another tool in my pocket is fantastic.” And what advice would she give to other pet lovers considering life as a veterinarian? “I would say, ‘Follow your dreams, follow your heart,’ because it is a lot of work,” Herejk said. “‘Study hard, do good in school and don’t be discouraged.” She added that the cost of veterinary school is an obstacle

that keeps many from following their dreams of becoming veterinarians. “It’s a big topic being tackled by the American Veterinary Medical Association right now. Debt could be a deterrent,” she explained. “But if you want to make a difference in animals’ lives and their owners’ lives, just go for it.” The Royal Palm Veterinary Center is located at 610 Royal Palm Beach Blvd. For more information, call (561) 793-7000 or visit www. royalpalmvc.com. wellington the magazine | september 2017

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Wellington The Magazine September 2017  

September 2017 | ON THE COVER ON THE COVER Anne Caroline Valtin, executive director of the Great Charity Challenge,is proud of the work t...

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