Not too many people that habituate Bridger Vet remember Mike Whitmore, but we all do.
Mike called up in the spring of 2013, looking to see if we might have an open vet-tech position. “Um, no, but I do have an open odd-job position through which you’ll see quite a bit of vet tech work. Plus you can look at Dad’s slide collection.” I covered my bases by calling up his references. When two ranch wives vouch for you and call you one of their best hires ever, and that includes one guy who later went to vet school at Texas A&M, that is good enough for me. I hired Mike sight unseen.
Mike spent that summer at Bridger Vet doing everything from irrigating to wrestling calves to putting up a colic stall to helping out on vet calls. He observed lameness exams, moved cattle, put duct-tape booties on a pony, snuggled a puppy or two, and took every opportunity to learn. Lots of people say that they would like to be a veterinarian, but Mike has the goods. He thinks through situations while having compassion for the animal that he is trying to help.
To this day, Mike remains one of the best hires I have ever made. We were all sorry to see him go back to school, even though we knew it was better for him in the long run. He needed to get through undergrad in order that we might one day have him back as a veterinarian. Today we received notice that Mike has begun the application process to become a veterinarian, and I couldn’t be happier for or more proud of him. Mike will be a fantastic vet one day, one that is good with all manner of animals and people. I can only hope that one day we seem him back at Bridger Vet, this time with more initials after his name.