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Cultivating the Future: Sidney Panaretos

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From therapeutic horses to vet clinics to farm visits

"Our pets are our family,” is both motto and simple fact for Sidney Panaretos. The rising senior in animal sciences and pre-vet at Purdue has led a life surrounded by animals, following a path of paw prints and horseshoe tracks.

If her journey had not begun at home with her own four-legged family members, you could say it started at Camp Red Cedar. She joined the therapeutic horse camp at 12 years old and continued throughout high school as a volunteer and barn hand for the horses, “learning about their feed, medicine, exercise, and training. Working as the barn hand provided me with a lot of inside knowledge about horse health, behavior, and training that helped me with my position now.”

Still prior to her college experience, Panaretos started an internship with Grabill Veterinary Clinic. She enjoyed her first few months there, but the sudden onset of the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the experience. Ever persistent, Panaretos emailed the clinic when it had opened again, asking if they needed any help. She worked there in the summer of 2022, and they were happy to have her back a third time this summer as a veterinary assistant.

Panaretos is an important member of the Grabill team: caring for animals in the kennels and assisting the vet in both appointments and surgeries. She even goes out on farm calls, travelling with the vet to work with large animals that can’t easily be transported. Farm calls are her favorite part of the job. “I love working with horses, cows, goats, you name it. It’s so exciting and so much fun. There is something new everyday on the farm.”

Purdue student does blood draw on a horse. Panaretos’ favorite thing to do on the farm is to draw blood from horses. This is my favorite thing to do on the farm. This horse is being tested for EIA (equine infectious anemia).
Purdue student cleans dogs ear. Sidney Panaretos takes special care to clean out this pup’s inflamed ear.
Cat receiving fluids This cat came into the Grabill clinic dehydrated, so Panaretos is giving him an injection of fluids.

Getting to work with large and companion animals, like dogs and cats, is helping better prepare her for vet school. Her biggest supporter in this and the clinic’s veterinarian and owner, James C. Robbins answers all her questions, “whether they are related to vet school, animal health, procedures, suture technique, or sometimes even golf.” 

Panaretos is preparing to take her next step, post graduation. 

While in vet school I would like to focus my path on large animals. The cliché thing to say is, ‘I love animals,’ and it’s true, but there’s more to it. I love all of it. The animals, the challenge of figuring out a diagnosis, surgery, and most importantly, helping a family.

- Sidney Panaretos

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