Animal Health Clinic hires Smith

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Pearl River County native has returned home to do what he loves most, care for animals.
Dr. Alan Smith, a graduate of Pearl River Central High School and more recent graduate of Mississippi State University where he studied animal science, joined the staff of Animal Health Clinic on May 5 of this year.
He is the most recent addition to the veterinary staff at the local business.
Growing up in Pearl River County, he helped his family tend to their herd of 50 cattle. While attending Pearl River Central High School, he also worked at Animal Health Clinic, where he was exposed to the medical side of caring for animals.
Caring for animals is a bit more challenging than caring for people because they can’t speak, Smith said. While animals can’t tell him what ails them, he finds it rewarding to provide help to those without a voice.
Smith, like some of the other veterinarians at the practice, not only cares for animals at the office, he also cares for large animals at farms across the region, such as vaccines and treating cattle with colic and horses suffering from lameness. He can also help treat livestock for worms and help with advanced cattle reproduction.
“I’ve got enough Pearl River County country boy in me that I enjoy working with large animals,” Smith said.
The fact that this county has the fourth most cattle in the state is one of the things that drew him back home to practice.
He’s so passionate about caring for cattle, he one day hopes to have his own herd.
But as much as he enjoys caring for large animals, the variety of the animals the clinic provides care for is what he likes about working at Animal Health Clinic. One day he could be giving routine vaccinations, while the next he may perform a surgical procedure. He attributes his readiness to meet those challenges to the training he received at Mississippi State University. Smith said MSU’s program is one of few in the area that provide two years of training in a classroom and two years of clinical training.
“We already have a year up on the others,” Smith said. “That’s helped me be better prepared.”
In addition to Smith, the Animal Health Clinic has four other veterinarians, Dr. Kevin Smith and Dr. Summer English, who work out of the Picayune location, and Dr. Patrick Cleveland and Dr., Justin Strief, who work at the Hancock County location.
The Picayune clinic can be reached at 601-799-1300 and is located at 500 Telly Rd.

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