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Human doctors could learn from these vets


Human doctors could learn from these vets

The article on the Veterinary Referral and Critical Care facility (Cover story, Aug. 24) did a wonderful job of conveying the high-quality care given to seriously ill animals.

My dog Chelsea collapsed and almost died in late July. We were referred to the VRCC facility. The day I brought Chelsea to the VRCC I was uncertain of her condition and feared the worst. That day Dr. Charlotte Davies took the time to explain what she could ascertain of my dog's condition.

Since then, Chelsea has had a large tumor removed, been diagnosed with cancer and has completed two sessions of chemotherapy.

Although Chelsea's prognosis is not good and her life span is shortened, I know my dog is receiving the best possible care.

Through Dr. Davies' compassion, patience and willingness to fully explain my dog's condition, I feel better about my dog's care and the money I am spending.

In fact, when Chelsea was first admitted and awaiting surgery in the intensive care unit, Dr. Davies called me several times to update me on Chelsea's condition.

Dr. Davies showed and continues to show more compassion towards me and her patients than many physicians who treat humans show to their patients. Through this experience I have learned that physicians who treat humans could stand to take the time to talk to their patients and the patients' families. Over the years my interaction with doctors who have treated seriously ill family members has not been as positive as the interaction I am experiencing with a doctor who is treating my dog.

Doctors who treat humans could learn a few things from Dr. Davies and the staff at VRCC about taking the time to fully explain a diagnosis and about being responsive to questions.

-- Susan Pollard

Review was mouthwatering

It was a great surprise to speak with my customers about the article in this week's issue of Style Weekly ( Dining, Aug. 24). My customers were overjoyed to read the feature about Ma-Musu's and salivated by the description of the food. Everyone was pleased by the article.

Thank you for the wonderful article you wrote about Ma-Musu's West African Cuisine. I appreciate any opportunity that recognizes the contribution of service that my restaurant is giving the Richmond community.

-- Ida "Ma-Musu" Daniels

Shelter now headed in the right direction

The Board and the staff of the Richmond SPCA were delighted to see Style Weekly's article about the improvements at the City of Richmond Animal Shelter (Metro, Sept. 7). We are pleased that Save Our Shelters and other area humane groups believe that the City Shelter is now being operated professionally and humanely and have halted their long-standing criticism. We share their positive view and are deeply appreciative of the obvious commitment of Councilman John Conrad, City Manager Dr. Calvin Jamison and Dr. Carolyn Beverly, the acting director of the Department of Public Health, to responsible management of the City Shelter and humane treatment of the animals in its care.

Last spring, the Richmond SPCA, a private nonprofit organization which is the largest animal adoption agency in Central Virginia, announced its long-range plan. Under this plan, we will create a regional public/private partnership in order to end the need to kill healthy pets as a means of population control anywhere in this community. This will be achieved through an aggressive spay/neuter program, extensive public humane education and a state-of-the-art animal care and adoption center.

It is essential to the realization of this plan that the City Animal Shelter be a capable and effective participant in the regional animal care system that is at the heart of our plan. We feel very optimistic that the positive changes at the City Shelter, created through the hard work of many folks, have now established an environment where our plan will soon be reality.

There is still a great deal of hard work to be done to achieve in our community what has been done in others — an end to the irresponsible reliance upon killing as the primary means of controlling our homeless animal population. However, it is apparent that we have come a long way already as a result of dedication and cooperation. The Richmond SPCA is deeply committed to the realization of our long-range plan so that homeless pets across this community will be assured of a happy, healthy future.

-- Anne M. Grier

President, Board of Directors

Real world experience valuable in the classroom

Patrick Tompkins' article on adjunct instructors correctly hit the spot (Back Page, Sept. 14).

Having been one for over 17 years, I have to agree with all the advantages and disadvantages mentioned by the author. One of the big problems that I encountered was that the full-time professors were the first ones to complain about pay increases, time off to pursue "research" and the time that they spent doing "research."

It is difficult for an adjunct professor to explain to the regular faculty that the time spent in preparation for the classes was the same whether you were adjunct or a regular teacher.

I have to disagree with the author as to whether the student is being exploited by the learning institution when they use an adjunct faculty member.

In most fields, especially in the business, legal and computer field, the adjunct professor does his regular job in that specific field and then teaches the students, not only from the book, but also from his own actual job experience.

The author asks which class I would rather enroll in, the full-time professor's class or the adjunct instructor's class. Give me the real world instructor.

-- Robert L. Vidrick Sr.


Last week, Style printed the wrong number to call for Sting tickets. The correct number is 262-8100. Style regrets the error.

In the Sept. 21 issue of Style, part of the last sentence of a story about new criteria for state funding for arts organizations was accidentally left out. The entire last paragraph of that story follows:

There are no doubt rational and even compelling arguments to be made in favor of criteria that bring more order to the process — hearings for the scores of individual groups seeking grants has become a time-wasting nightmare, legislators say — and even result in a net decline in arts funding. But no one from the administration appears willing to make those arguments.

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