How the Joint Study of Human and Animal Health Is Saving Lives

How One Health Can Even Be Applied to Mental Well-Being

Given that pets are integral members of our families, the illness and death of a pet is an important emotional health issue for many people.

Veterinarians commonly partner with colleagues in human health care for their expertise in helping pet lovers cope with the loss of a pet. Many veterinary hospitals — including the Animal Medical Center, where I practice — offer pet grief counseling.

But Dr. David Schoenfeld of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, a pediatrician renowned for his work with kids and bereavement, took it a step further with a One Health approach when he expanded his recommendations about bereavement in children to include pet loss.

These are just a few examples of how health and medicine connect all creatures. In the words of Natterson-Horowitz and Bowers, “physicians and patients [should] join veterinarians in thinking beyond the human bedside to barnyards, oceans and skies.”

Veterinarians welcome the challenge.

Dr. Ann Hohenhaus, a practicing veterinarian for 25 years, is board-certified in both oncology and internal medicine. She maintains her clinical practice at The Animal Medical Center in New York City, providing primary care to her long-term patients and specialty care to pets with cancer and blood disorders.


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