Dr. Kate Frances Hurley has a passion for animals that shines through in her enthusiasm and innovation. The current Director of the Koret Medicine Program at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, Kate has worked with animals in almost every capacity since 1989, including as an assistant dog groomer, in administration at the Santa Cruz SPCA, as a kennel attendant and as an animal control officer. She loved this position, because she was able to have a direct impact on animals' lives, but felt that she wanted to focus on preventive healthcare instead. To realize this goal, Kate went to veterinary medical school.
Through her work at UC Davis Kate has become a recognized leader in the field of shelter medicine. Her preventative practice methods are simple, practical and effective. With Kate's help, animals are becoming healthier and adoption rates are rising.
"My very favorite thing is to get an email from someone who implemented one of our ideas that cost very little and had huge ongoing returns, like putting portals in cat cages and seeing length of stay go down, Upper Respiratory Infections virtually disappear and adoptions go up."
Kate has authored numerous publications related to shetler medicine, including co-authoring the Association of Shelter Veterinarians' Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters and co-editing the textbook Infectious Disease Management in Animal Shelters with colleague and friend Lila Miller.
Kate is currently dedicating time to improving shelter facility design as she feels that the shelter itself has a huge impact on animal welfare. A well-designed shelter helps ease stress (for staff, volunteers and animals), lowers operating costs and increases donations. As Kate says, "It's so satisfying to see a building we helped design in action with happy animals and happy people."
Marsha Panuce, Founder and Executive Director of Dante's Den in Sarasota, Florida, is on a mission to create a community of joyful dogs.
As a dog lover with a background in the arts, Marsha has entertained audiences as a concert pianist and has worked as a successful jewelry designer and fashion consultant. As the current Arts & Events Reporter for SNN6 News in Sarasota, Florida, Marsha created and hosts a segment called "Dog Days," which partners with The Sarasota Humane Society to help adoptable dogs find new homes. The dogs she features have a 100 percent placement rate.
About 10 years ago, Marsha and her husband, Don, began to dream of creating a community for dogs. They wanted to give back to the dogs in their life and also wondered what would happen to their dogs when they were no longer able to care for them. They envisioned building a campus where dogs could be nurtured and happy. Through this, the concept for Donte's Den was created.
Donte's Den, named after their own beloved Schnauzer, is an innovative dog haven that is set to open in 2014. The Animal Arts designed facility will provide state-of-the-art care for up to 100 dogs on 50 acres of Florida countryside located in Manatee County. Dogs will be fed and cared for as their owner specified, with volunteers to walk, feed, play and cuddle with them.
Some dogs will arrive at Donte's Den from loving homes, such as those from military families who are serving overseas. Others will arrive from shelters.
Through the facility's adoption services, guided by Marsha's experience with adoption placement, some dogs will be carefully matched with new families. Others will live out their lives in this community. Either way, all of the dogs will be celebrated, and their families can rest assured in the quality of care they will recieve at Donte's Den.