Clovis 200pxClovisClovis has always been a bit of an enigma. She started out a tiny, wobbly kitten, and her condition progressed, affecting her mobility and breathing. Countless veterinary specialists have examined and tested her but could never find a specific diagnosis.  Just after she turned two, we were only told by those at the top of their field that she had a “progressive congenital neuropathy”, which means that she was born with a neurological disorder that was getting worse.   We were told that she had a month, maybe two, to live.  That was 7 years ago.

Having Dr. Bryant as our primary veterinarian saved Clovis’s life and has given us seven fantastic years (and counting) with our precious little cat.  When others looked at Clovis and saw her situation as “black and white”, Dr. Bryant was able to see the gray area.  She could see that Clovis was very happy and, all things considered, was quite a healthy cat.  We knew that we weren’t going to “fix” Clovis; that wasn’t our goal.  She was never going to run or jump again, but she could have a fulfilling, quality life, even if it was a bit unconventional.  

Frankie 2 200pxFrankie and his familyWe are so grateful to have found Dr. Karen Bryant with ToYourDoorVet here in Madison. Relatively new to town, we were devastated when our 170 pound St. Bernard, Frankie, went downhill so quickly and I luckily found Dr. Bryant and asked her to come over. Frankie was falling and I couldn't lift him- I really didn't know what to do. I found Dr. Bryant and she came to my home over several days as necessary to check on him and eventually help us put him down. Dr. Bryant was so comforting not only to me and my family, but to Frankie. He snuggled up to her and her assistant, Chelsea, and he could tell that he was in good hands.

Dr. Bryant offered countless suggestions, from appropriate painkillers to natural medicine supplements and even brought us some of her favorites to borrow in terms of a pelvic harness to help Frankie up, no-skid rugs for our stairs, etc. She had some wonderful and creative ideas to help us manage Frankie's pain and keep him comfortable. I appreciated as well that Dr. Bryant was generous enough in spirit to both our dog and our own hearts to let us know that we may be at the point where Frankie's failing body and our capacity to help was at a point of no return.

Ellis and GizmoEllis and GizmoIn October 2001, I had the honor of becoming Gizmo’s (black and white kitty) guardian when I rescued him from the Dane County Humane Society.  He was joined by his roommate, Ellis D (tortoise shell kitty) in 2005.  In May 2011 when I required several surgical procedures and could no longer physically carry the boys to the vet (not to mention how stressful it was for both them and myself to get them in their carriers and take them out of the house), I did an on-line search to seek out a veterinarian that would come to the house and found Dr. Bryant.  Right away, we hit it off well as we both had nursing backgrounds.

In 2012 Gizmo was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease (CKD).  Dr. Bryant and Chelsea monitored and supported Gizmo through the disease process and discussed end of life planning with me. They also supported Ellis D through the process.  If I asked a question about treatment that Dr. Bryant wasn’t clear on the answer, she would research it and get back to me.  She provided me with tips (adding water to the soft canned food as a way of providing more water), tricks (using pill pockets to administer oral medications) and treatment to support Gizmo and provide as highest a quality of life as possible.