October 15, 2012

A Changemaker for Animals, and a TOP TEN AWARD Honoree!

Patrick Mahaney, VMD
Dr. Patrick Mahaney exemplifies qualities that make up the best of any person.  Meeting Patrick with his bright smile and optimistic outlook on life makes you want to be his friend and be like him!  Patrick is more than that.  He is a top-notch Veterinarian with a passion for learning and teaching.

That is why today, on the Blog the Change for Animals day, I am writing about Dr. Patrick Mahaney.  He is an animal hero making positive changes for animals and their owners!  I am also awarding him one of our Top Ten Awards for 2012!

Dr. Mahaney became a certified veterinary acupuncturist (CVA) through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (IVAS) in 2006.  In 2008 he founded California Pet Acupuncture and Wellness (CPAW) which offers house call based integrative veterinary medicine to Los Angeles dogs and cats. Since many of his patients are geriatric or have cancer, he found a like-minded facility to offer his services: the Veterinary Cancer Group.

Dr. Patrick is also and always a student, however.  He is consistently attending (and often presenting) at conferences, going on site visits to animal wellness facilities and manufacturing facilities and learning about the core of a product before he would dream of endorsing it to others.  His active mind is always thinking of new ways to improve the lives of animals.  This includes an interest in other cultures and is why he is an integrative veterinarian who combines western and eastern perspectives...

Amazon CARES was very fortunate to have Patrick Mahaney, VMD as a volunteer on one of our Vets Abroad trips, sponsored by i Love Dogs, in April of 2011.  The short video below demonstrates his natural curiosity and willingness to experience new things.  Dr. Patrick has an extended playlist on YouTube from his Amazon CARES trip.

To satisfy his creative urges, Dr. Mahaney writes a pet health column (Patrick's Blog) and connects with animal aficionados worldwide through Q & A, videos, and radio interviews. He also guest blogs for Perez Hilton's TeddyHilton.com,Fido Friendlyi Love DogsVeterinary Practice NewsHealthy Pets and People with Dr. Patrick on OutImpactRadio.comMSNBC Sunday with Alex Witt, and Pet Docs On Call. Recently, he's lent his holistic veterinary perspective to Jackson Galaxy’s My Cat From Hell on Animal Planet.

Through the media, he multiplies the reach of his knowledge on important pet topics.

Thank you Patrick for being you.  A friend, a collaborator, a volunteer and a partner in crime.  Joan Collins tweeted that you were her favorite Vet!  You are truly one of the Top Ten People Amazon CARES wants to recognize in 2012.  And thank you for being the change for animals!

Keep up with my hero through Twitter (@PatrickMahaney) and follow his adventures in veterinary medicine by liking Patrick Mahaney: Veterinarian Acupuncture Pain Management for Your Pets on Facebook.

October 11, 2012

Vet Professionals: What's on Your Bucket List?

Alex Schroth dances the Salsa with
Amazon CARES Vet Tech Harry
Did you set goals for 2012?  Have you met them all?  Have you experienced something totally new and brave and different and exotic?  If that was on your bucket list, and you haven't met that criteria...it's your lucky day!  You have just enough time to join the final vet trip of the year with Amazon CARES. And this trip is a great one...

After a week in Iquitos serving poorer areas with spay/neuter clinics and also TNR of street dogs and cats, we will travel by boat to Caballo Cocha, just across the lake from Columbia.

During the first week you'll be staying at the super comfortable Amazon CARES lodge eating delicious food by Marlene.  Seriously, all volunteers say the best food they get is from Marlene.

During the second week, we are guests of the government.  Accommodations probably won't be so plush, and the food with be what the Peruvians eat (lots of fish, chicken and rice)!  But hey, that's all part of the adventure.

Many people met some lofty goals this year with Amazon CARES.

Dr. Jackie Imai fell in love!

Dr. Sean Pampreen went on the trip of a lifetime!

Director Molly Mednikow learned to survive without a smartphone!

Amazing friendships are formed!
And more!  What will happen when YOU come to the Amazon?

Read more about this amazing trip and apply online TODAY!   $750 is an amazing price for two weeks with almost everything included!  Check out new routes on copaair.com that fly you into Iquitos, bypassing Lima (and another flight).

October 9, 2012

Landmark Dog Abuse Case Makes International News

Posted on Blog Paws Be the Change on Oct. 4, 2012

History has been made, as an unprecedented verdict has been reached in the Iquitos area of Peru, where the not-for-profit organization, Amazon CARES, secured a conviction in the case of a woman who was charged with poisoning a 5-month-old puppy.

Many of you might have had the opportunity to meet Molly Mednikow, fellow BlogPaws' community member and founder of Amazon CARES.

In this particular case, Sandra Milagros Padilla Alvis, never imagined that an attempt on the life of Arthas, a 5-month-old puppy, owned by Alfredo Martín Díaz García, would result in being charged for a crime.  In the 3rd Counsel Magistrates Court, Padilla Alvis was sentenced for offenses against morality under an Animal Abuse and Cruelty Code and will pay fines of 2000 Peruvian Nuevo Soles, which will cost her one-fourth of her income for nearly seven months.

Earlier this year, Amazon CARES signed an agreement to work with the Iquitos Bar Association. MollymednikowTogether, these two groups have fought hard for a well-earned victory.

After seven months, this landmark verdict was recently handed down in an animal abuse case in this small town of South America. This is a legal precedent for all of Peru, and an example for many Third World nations.

A native of Memphis, Tennessee, Molly Mednikow received her MBA and began working in her family’s jewelry business. Though successful, she began traveling to the Peruvian Amazon to deliver school supplies to remote jungle villages. By 2004, her interests in Peru had grown to the extent that she made a life-altering decision. She stepped away from her jewelry business to spend a year in the Amazon. In 2005, she finalized her decision and made her move official, selling her business back to family members. Mednikow lived in the Peruvian Amazon until 2008, when she returned to the United States to open an office from which her charity could grow. Mednikow divides her time between Peru and the United States.

Together, we can make a difference. Learn more about Amazon CARES by visiting their website at www.amazoncares.org
BlogPaws salutes you, Molly!

October 2, 2012

Dr. Sean Pampreen: "This trip was an absolute adventure."

Photo by Alexandra Schroth

I traveled to the Amazon with Amazon CARES for several reasons.  I love to travel, love adventure, and enjoy volunteering.  This trip definitely satisfied all of these for me.

I was definitely bitten by the travel bug early on.  My dad loved to travel.  As a family growing up, we traveled to most of the United States, parts of Canada and Mexico.  Always traveled by car and always camped so that we could see everything.  Since then I have been able to travel the world with various veterinary groups, still trying to see everything.

As a Scout I had the opportunity to explore and take part in other types of adventure and learned the value of community service.  Since then I have continued to explore the world and volunteer for my community.  Now, as a Scout leader I try to teach my Scouts by example the Venturing oath, “to help others, and to seek truth, fairness, and adventure in our world.

Thank you to Embrace Pet Insurance for many
pharmaceutical donations.  Photo by dancingdogblog.com
This trip was an absolute adventure.  It was not a leisurely vacation, but a trip of a lifetime.  You had to adapt to “Peruvian time” and adjust to different people, different foods and different types of accommodations.  But, you also were able to see and learn a different culture.  These things are not always met on a tourist vacation.  On those trips, you are typically taken to see the “local villages” to buy their goods and then back to your fancy hotel.
In the Amazon, the work was hard.  The days were long, hot and humid.  Supplies were limited.  The surgical area conditions were no where close to ideal.  The food on the road was often times  ok at best.  The travel conditions between villages or sites was often “snug” and uncomfortable.  Most of the villagers live in exteme poverty.  There is little or usually no contact to the outside world.  But with all this, the trip to the Amazon was an awesome experience.