Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Social Networking for Vet-Nerds (pet parent stuff too!)

I keep trying to write my post but I'm distracted by my boyfriend watching this episode of National Geographic CIA secret experiments. This stuff is CRAZY. Whoa, I mean I knew about the MK Ultra experiments but watching a documentary on it is just so much more incredible than just hearing about it. Very interesting, I recommend watching it if you have cable...which we just got a few weeks ago. YAY! We've been without cable for about two years and finally decided to sign back up. Ok he just changed it to espn and I'm not interested in what is on there. Anyway this week I discovered something really cool for veterinary people and even pet owners. It's kind of like a social network for veterinary professionals. It's called VetVine (www.vetvine.com) and I originally found it when checking work emails. The email offered free e-course about heartworm disease if you signed up for the free service. I'm always up for a good bargain and registered myself the next chance I had. Although I missed the course and apparently there was some login issues (which have now been fixed); I have had the opportunity to browse the site and use some of the features. 

The purpose of VetVine is to bring veterinary professionals together in an online community, provide accurate and "expertly-authenticated" information for pet owners, and continuing education for professionals (free for students!). It also has an option to search for veterinary staff by location or name--in case you have a patient traveling and want to find a networked clinic/staff member. It's a very new website with only about 279 members but I think it may be a very useful tool. Pet owners aren't able to join but there are resources there for anyone to use if they are interested. It's just starting out but I can only imagine how it will help with contacts and networking at the next big veterinary conference. They are still adding information to the library as they go but right now for pet owners there is dermatology and ophthalmology topics to view.
I think what they are trying to do is have a website like www.healthypet.com (pet owners can search for networked vet clinics/staff and find educational information) but also have resources and socializing for staff. So far its much more geared towards vet staff but hopefully they will be adding more so that its interactive for everyone, but I'm rather impressed. Most websites exist for one purpose: Veterinarypartner.com has information for anyone. VSPN.org (for staff) or VIN (for vets) has forums, chat, courses, and library--almost all of it except the social aspect. VetVine isn't made to replace any of these other websites but to enhance the connections we make anywhere. Well at least this is my impression. Check it out :)
In other news, I reorganizing my apartment as we signed the lease for another year and we really need to figure out how to use this tiny space. I'm adding a bunch of shelves in the two rooms and bathroom in an attempt to take advantage of some unused vertical space. So far so good! It also makes it feel more like "my home" as I'm finding places for everything and making it look like we have more room then we have (not an easy feat!!!).
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