Faces of Steamboat: Karen Nann

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The Yampa Valley is a place filled with people that enjoy everything our beautiful home has to offer; from the great outdoor activities, to the special community of people, and the endless celebrations. Karen Nann, a local veterinarian, is someone that embodies the spirit of the Yampa Valley in all that she does. We wanted to get to know her a bit better and get some tips on how to keep our furry friends safe this winter.  

How did you end up in Steamboat?

I started visiting Steamboat as a teenager for skiing.  My parents ended up retiring here, and while in veterinary school, I came to Steamboat to complete externships at two wonderful veterinary clinics: Steamboat Veterinary Hospital and Pet Kare Clinic.  I’m extremely fortunate that I was offered a job at Pet Kare Clinic and ended up settling here about 4 years ago.

What do you love about living here?

Steamboat is an amazing community; everyone is so welcoming and activities are endless.  From skiing, to biking, to yoga, to hanging at a lake or brewery, you can always find a friend to be active with.  

What kind of activities and hobbies do you enjoy? 

I love being outdoors. I enjoy mountain biking, road biking, running, hiking, downhill and back country skiing. Any activity with my dog, Callie, is a bonus!  I also teach yoga at Rakta Hot Yoga, so I love to participate in classes at the studio and during the summer, I’m found on lakes teaching paddleboard yoga.  

What inspired you to become a vet? 

My veterinary path was a happy accident.  My undergraduate degree is in Anthropology from CU Boulder. I became a Peace Corps Volunteer in St. Vincent, West Indies after undergrad and was given a sick dog with Parvovirus.  I met the island veterinarian through this tough situation and apprenticed under him. Seeing the need for rural veterinary care, I obtained a grant to start the first spay, neuter and vaccination clinic in St. Vincent, and fell in love with the educational side of animal care and providing help to animals in need.  I then returned to the US and went to veterinary technician school.  I was a veterinary technician for 6 years while completing prerequisites prior to going off to veterinary school back in the West Indies at Ross University.  

What do you specialize in?

I am currently a veterinarian at Pet Kare Clinic and practice general medicine for small animals (cats and dogs). I am also acupuncture certified and treat both small and large animals, which provides remarkable pain management for many conditions. 

Why did you decide to practice here in Steamboat?

Steamboat checks off every box that was important to me.  I am blessed to work at an amazingly supportive clinic focused on teamwork and providing the best care for our four-legged friends.  I live in a community with like-minded individuals who are active, generous and kind, the outdoor activities are endless, and my family is close by.  I am blessed that Steamboat welcomed me into its community to practice!

Tips for keeping pets healthy through the winter

A couple of common issues we see in the winter is foot burns from sidewalk salt. I always recommend rinsing pets’ feet once they come in from outside.  Deep snow does increase chances of post-holing which can predispose dogs to cruciate ligament injuries of the knee.  Keeping our dogs warm with jackets and booties, help in cold weather as well as may prevent ski edge laceration injuries while we spend fun active time with our four-legged family members!