22 Oct 14

We are Better With Pets ...

by Nancy E. Hassel, LIPetPlace.com

The 2nd Annual Better With Pets summit, hosted by Purina, was held in New York City on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 and brought together thought leaders, entrepreneurs, rocket scientists, (yes actual an rocket scientist), and so many other wonderful people in the pet industry.  This year’s summit focused on how innovations and what is to come for pet care, pet products, veterinary care and nutrition.

Kicking off the summit was 14-year old entrepreneur Brooke Martin – who is so well spoken for her age, poised, bubbly and professional – it is a almost a ridiculous. Inventing a product called iCpooch, she talked about her product, the reason she came up with the idea and how she beat out 39 adults at a entrepreneurial weekend competition at a college, when she was the ripe old age of 12 years old.  I met Brooke at Global Pet Expo this past March and loved her spirit and drive to make our lives better with our pets.  Congrats Brooke!

Host of the event John Hockenberry with Mayo Clinic doctor, Ed Creagan who gave tremendous insight (most of us know this already) but how sick human patients were missing their pets so much while hospitialized that their health declined.  An example of one patient who stopped eating when he was separated from his dog, and his dog while in foster care also stopped eating.  When the dog was brought to the hospital to visit with the patient, both of them perked up and were much more responsive – the nurses couldn’t believe it.  I can.  Hospitals need to become better at dealing with patients that may be terminal or in the hospital for a long time to ALLOW visitation from the owners pets.  So glad this topic was talked about and thank you to Dr. Ed Creagan for being there to bring attention to this subject.

The amazing story of Bean and how her owner, Dr. Karen M. Vernau and another veterinarian Dr. Stan Marks didn’t give up on her and her story of hope and survivial is incredible.  It was great to meet Bean at the event.  Bean should actually not be alive today, living with a permenant feeding tube, who also could not breath properly with conditions such as muscular dystrophy to a malfunctiong esophagus, Bean is probably one of the first dogs, if not the first to have a tracheotomy.  This happy go lucky sweet dog is alive because of these incredible advances in human and veterinary medicine.

Victoria Stillwell was also one of the guest speakers at this year’s summit and throughout the day long event the speaker line up that was fun, (can you say Cats taking over the art world?), informative, moving and motivating. If you missed the event you have incredible luck as you can WATCH the entire summit here – how cool is that? Enjoy! (See more pictures below).

Just Manny the Frenchie hanging out during the event!

Fellow pet professional in attendance at the summit during the lunch break.

Beke Lubeach of Goodbone Marketing,  Caroline Goldin of Romeo the Cat and Crayons and Collars, Dr.   Nancy Hassel (me!) and Dana Humphrey of Whitegate PR.

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