Saturday, July 10, 2010

Our First Visit

Life on The Farm is a daily adventure; you never know when your day begins what it will bring. In addition to unbearable heat (we managed), on Friday Maria had an eye issue. After calling Carol Reigh (who continues to gain living sainthood), I drove to Blue Mountain Animal Clinic because Dr. Truesdell promised she would help out when she could till her large animal vet joining the practice finished school at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. That was two years ago.

God watches over our animals, I am sure, because I walked into the clinic and there stood Justin L. Cunfer, DVM, who just joined the practice in June and happens to be a local boy and near neighbor as well. When you wait for someone for nearly 2 years, you form a wish list of what you hope your vet will be. Justin was the whole package, plus! He is gentle, caring, and kind in his handling of our animals. He is patient and deliberate, never making a rush to judgment or a false move. My animals instinctively trusted him and I hope were a pleasure to treat. We--all of us--wanted to please. The girls too.

Fortune was smiling, and it was firsts all around. It was Justin's first visit to a farm as a large animal vet. It was Ashley Hawk, CVTs first visit ever. And for me, well, it was our first visit with llamas too. It was so first that the truck was not fully outfitted, but for our purposes, it was like a bit of heaven in your own back yard.

It was a wonderful visit with a happy ending. No eye damage, just some good old-fashioned dirt in Maria's eye. Justin flushed the eye and medicated it, after determining there was no injury. How great it is not only having Justin nearby, but he actually had experience with llamas and alpacas, and he is so willing to continue to learn. In his future, there's a complimentary invitation to our GALA 2010 The Magic of Llamas Conference at Holiday Inn Conference Center in Grantville, PA, and I am really hoping he will attend. It's hard to capture the excitement I feel at having a vet so close by and so knowledgeable, as well as having a trained CVT in Ashley. I am finally breathing a sigh of relief, looking forward to my first cria in September, an Eskalaro offspring.

Our First Visit: Justin L. Cunfer, DVM from RJ Stangherlin on Vimeo.

You can discover more about Justin L. Cunfer, DVM, at

Blue Mountain Animal Clinic is a small but growing practice in a tiny town that might otherwise be forgotten except for its intersection on a major N - S highway. From left to right, Barb Stewart manages the office and multitasks with efficiency I admire and covet. Bev Miller meets and greets, handles too many things at one time with ease, and controls the climate of the office ~ always calm, considerate, caring. Dr. Amanda L. Teter rounds out the DVM staff; she has returned from maternity leave and we are glad she is back. Additional office staff was busy helping in the background, so no photo op with them. What I can guarantee is that hidden away in this tiny hamlet is a veterinary practice with a very large heart, and I am blessed that they are a part of our lives.

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