All finalists named winners after cyberbullying disrupts contest

Dr. Kris Cooke and Mishka

Dr. Kris Cooke, a clinical associate professor of small animal medicine at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, greets Mishka, an 11-year-old Boston terrier owned by Dave Heine, left. (Photo by Sarah Carey)

All Top-20 finalists in the America’s Favorite Veterinarian contest, including the University of Florida’s Dr. Kirsten Cooke, were named winners after cyberbullying by anti-declawing activists resulted in the contest’s cancellation on Aug. 26.

The contest’s sponsor, the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, issued a press release explaining why the group felt it needed to end the contest less than a week before it was set to end. Actions by the activists had contaminated the elections process and included direct harassment of many of the contests finalists, the AVMF stated.

The organization has named all of the finalists “America’s Favorite Veterinarian” and will be issuing each of them certificates.

The Gainesville Sun, which provided earlier coverage of Cooke’s selection as a finalist, also covered the latest story.

“The nomination process was actually a hard process for us, because of how large Mishka’s care team has become,” said Dave Heine, who nominated Cooke for the award. “In reflecting back on all the health issues that Mishka has dealt with in her 12 years, we have made many friends in the veterinary community, from private practice veterinarians to many of the faculty, students and employees at UF and the UF Small Animal Hospital.

“Through the last three years of medical issues, Dr. Cooke has been in Mishka’s corner every step of the way. She has made time to guide our family and our veterinarians through every twist and turn of what has turned into a complicated series of medical issues. She has done that whether she has been in the classroom teaching, in clinics or even when she was teaching in New Zealand.”

Added Cooke, “I think it’s sad the contest had to end this way, but I really appreciate that Dave Heine took the time and made the effort to nominate me as well as for the support I received. Most of all, though, it has been a privilege to care for Dave’s dog, Mishka, over the years and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of her veterinary team.”





Share this article with others:
  • E-mail this story to a friend!
  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • Twitter

September 2015

Professor named vice president of national equine association

Dr. Margo Macpherson, a professor of equine reproduction at UF, will serve as the 2016 vice president of the American Association of Equine Practitioners.

Renowned author, autism advocate Temple Grandin to visit Gainesville and UF

Renowned author, autism advocate Temple Grandin to speak at UF on Sept. 24.

Darwin and Efram Goldberg

Dog recuperating from pythiosis after treatment at UF

A young German shepherd is recuperating well after treatment for pythiosis at UF’s Small Animal Hospital.

The Horse online course launches in fall 2015.

Online course focusing on the horse now underway at UF

A new online course, The Horse, launched this fall at UF.

...also in this issue



Around the College