Leaving Their Trail
Academics, Features

Leaving Their Trail

By Tyce Dishman

According to the American Pet Products Association, 70 percent of American households own a pet, but for some students these animals are more than a pet. 

Gabby Knight, Kelsey Vest and Emma Miller all share the same interest: helping animals. 

Knight and Miller both want to be veterinarians, while Vest is unclear with what she wants to do at the moment. However, she knows that she likes taking care of animals.

Knight and Vest both work at the Albany Veterinary Clinic. Kelsey’s mom, Amy Vest, has worked there for 24 years as a receptionist.

“I love being around and taking care of animals,” Mrs. Vest said. “I also enjoy creating relationships with the pet owners.”

While working in the clinic, Kelsey has had multiple crazy shifts over the last year.

For someone who isn’t aware of the world of veterinary care, they might assume that this job is easy, but it’s quite the opposite.

“I have walked anywhere from one to 23 dogs in a single shift,” Kelsey said.

Kelsey took one to three dogs out at once until every dog had done its business. It could take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes for each group of dogs.

Kelsey often has to walk multiple dogs at once so she can take care of all the dogs in her shift.

The Vests not only care for other people’s animals, they have a wide variety of pets themselves. 

“I have five dogs, all different breeds, three cats, and two snakes,” Kelsey said. “We got one (snake) from my past bio teacher and one from Michigan online.”


Girl holding snake
Junior Kelsey Vest holds one of her two snakes. She got this milk snake from her former biology teacher. (Photo Provided)

With all these animals their house can become loud.

“When someone comes to the door it is like a free security system with all the dogs barking,” Kelsey said.

Just as chaotic as the Vest household, Emma Miller also has multiple animals. Miller lives on a farm taking care of multiple animals year round.

Miller shows beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats, rabbits and chickens.

Girl and cow
Sophomore Emma Miller enjoys a playful moment with her steer, Billy. (Photo Provided)

She dreams of getting into veterinary school to potentially work with larger animals.

“I want to go to Purdue so I have been taking advantage of every opportunity I get,” Miller said. “I’m in FFA and 4H and I also show nationally to make me stand out.”

Spending all this time around animals she has gained a certain passion and love for them.

Much like Miller, Knight also has been taking advantage of the opportunities she gets and she has been working on building her resume. That is not the only thing they have in common, Gabby also has animals. Gabby has a two-year-old black Labrador retriever named Sasha.

Black dog
Sasha, a two-year-old black Labrador Retriever, sunbathes in Gabby Knight’s yard. (Photo Provided)

She works at the clinic with Kelsey and Kelsey’s mom and does the same tasks as Kelsey. With all the experience she has gained working at the clinic she applied to Purdue in November and got accepted in January. She hasn’t applied to vet school at Purdue yet. 

”There is a program at Purdue called Vet Scholar that I will be applying for to help me get into vet school,” Knight said.

Knight is taking her time making sure that she stands out from all other applicants. She will apply for multiple summer internships and join different communities to learn as much as possible going into this upcoming school year at Purdue.

Just three Delta High school students taking steps leaving their print to plan out  future one step at a time.  

February 26, 2024

About Author

Tyce Dishman

tycedishman Tyce Dishman is a freshman at Delta High School and plays varsity tennis. He is so happy his brothers are his assistant coaches! He loves his family and his dog. He is also a diehard Seattle Seahawks fan.


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