The Best of Both Worlds

As I am getting settled back here in the area, I am privileged to be working at two phenomenal practices. This allows me to provide my services and experience to different parts of the capital district.

At New Baltimore Animal Hospital I am able to do general practice, as well as orthopedic consultations and surgery. I am also developing a rehabilitation and pain management clinic here.

At the Northway Animal Emergency Clinic , I am available for those patients in need of critical care. This practice is open overnight (from 6pm-8am on weekdays), as well as all weekends and holidays. My background in pain management is applied here to the critical patient and stabilizing them. When indicated, I can also provide emergency surgical services.

Each of these practices has a dedicated and knowledgeable staff with training specific to my patients specific needs. I have had great experiences already at each location, and am looking forward to many more.


3 thoughts on “The Best of Both Worlds

  1. kaylee15mom says:

    Dr. Brunke:
    I wanted to say “Thank you” again for treating my 15-year old Siberian Husky the other night at the Northway Animal Emergency Clinic. Kaylee is doing extremely well. It’s as if by having that surgery, it breathed new life into her. Kaylee has always been strong-willed, independent, and stubborn but these traits have given her a fighting spirit like none I’ve ever seen before. Every time she has been faced with a medical challenge, she has managed to endure, recover and come back even stronger than before.
    Kaylee has been through a lot over the years. I adopted her at the age of 6 1/2 years old from a family that was splitting up due to divorce. None of the family could take her and they were devastated by this. They searched for a home for her and did try placing her with a friend’s family, but that didn’t work out. It was after she had been returned to her owners, who were trying to sell their house as part of the divorce, when I first learned about her and her plight.
    When I met her for the first time, I knew as soon as she locked eyes with me, and looked deep into my soul, that we were kindred spirits. Even though I had several questions for the owner, I had already made my mind up in that moment that I would adopt her. My heart broke for her seeing her family disintegrate due to the divorce. The loving family that she had known all her life had moved out and she would be without a home if someone didn’t step up and take her. So I did. It was the best decision I ever made.
    It took a while for me to fully gain her trust, not surprising given her experience with having her family give her up. She was wicked smart but strong-willed and challenged me all the time. This is what I have come to refer to as “being a pesky wolf”. But this strength of spirit is exactly what has allowed her to endure for 15 years through all kinds of adversity.
    One summer, several years ago, Kaylee partially blew out the ACL of one of her hind legs. While she was recovering from that injury, she overused the other hind leg and the following summer she blew out the other ACL. An orthopedic foam mattress, lots of joint supplements, NSAIDs and careful mild walking exercise helped her to recover. All throughout that time, she would not let those injuries keep her down or prevent her from taking the walks twice a day that she loved, even though those walks were a lot shorter than she would have liked. (I only wish that we had known about you back then. I’m sure that you would have been able to provide great rehab for her along with the pain management.) Since then, she has developed moderate arthritis and this has been treated successfully with NSAIDs and tramadol.
    When she was 10 years old, Kaylee had to have dental surgery to remove several teeth. I was so afraid that she wouldn’t make it through the procedure due to the risks of general anesthesia especially on an older dog. But she persevered with that strong husky heart of hers.
    When she was 14, the vet diagnosed a peri-anal tumor. Given her age and the risks, we agreed that we would not pursue surgery. I had no way of knowing how much time she had left given her advanced age, and I didn’t want to take away any quality of life that she might still be able to enjoy.
    Last week, when the tumor began bleeding and I couldn’t get it to stop, I thought that was the end for Kaylee. I am a realist and rational, logical person, and I also believe in the cycle of life and death. I knew going into the clinic that it could be last time for Kaylee. I fully expected that I would be told to put her down. What I didn’t expect was that Kaylee would be lucky enough to be treated by a vet that had the skills, knowledge, and confidence that you displayed, who was ready to face the challenges and risks of performing surgery on a 15-year old dog. While I was at home anxiously waiting for your call while Kaylee was in surgery, I found your blog and began reading your posts. As I read what you had written, I felt more confidence in my decision to have you perform the surgery to remove the tumor. I knew that she was in the most capable of hands. Given that you had just recently started at the clinic, I couldn’t believe how lucky we were. I want to thank you for your exceptional treatment of Kaylee, both in the way that you approached and worked with her, as well as your expertise in surgery and pain management. Kaylee’s spirit is not diminished and if anything, she is back bigger and better than before. You have given Kaylee the chance to have quality of life for a little longer and to be the pesky wolf that I have grown to love and admire. Thank you so much.

    • drbrunke says:

      You are very welcome. I am very glad to hear that Kaylee is doing so well. Thank you for sharing her (and your) story with me. Please keep me posted on her progress, and if you would want me to evaluate Kaylee as a patient who deals with chronic pain, please let me know. I am glad to hear she is managing well currently, with the impending winter and the progressive nature of arthritis, it may be that other simple steps may benefit her going forward. – Dr. Brunke

      • kaylee15mom says:

        I wanted to let you know that Kaylee just had her follow-up appointment with her primary and everything looks good! The incision is healing nicely and there is no swelling. Best news that I could have hoped for! I will definitely let you know of her continuing progress. I am concerned about how she is going to fair this winter too. I can tell you though that the extra tramadol has done wonders for her. She’s been able to get up and sit/lay down a lot easier since we increased the dose. Also, her spirit has been very good and she has been initiating play and all manner of “peskiness”. She is definitely doing better! – Kaylee’s Mom

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