Shortage in large-animal veterinarians creates issues for cattle, horse industry [Video]

State Agriculture News

MORNING VIEW, Ky. (WKRC) — Todd and Nancy Kloentrup operate Poverty Hollow Farms in southern Kenton County, raising about 30 mother-calf pairs of black angus cows.

Nancy is also a semi-retired large-animal veterinarian, and she’s worried about the future of the cattle industry in the Bluegrass State.

That’s because Kentucky faces a dramatic shortage of vets who are willing or trained to treat large animals like cattle or horses, two of the commonwealth’s largest agricultural exports.

A lot of people don’t realize that Kentucky is the largest beef cattle production state east of the Mississippi and most of the beef cattle produced in Kentucky are from small farms,” said Nancy Kloentrup, whose farm has been in her husband’s family since the 1800s.

According to the Kentucky Agriculture Cabinet, there are only 54 practicing large animal vets in the commonwealth out of nearly 1,700 total statewide.

The issue stems from the fact that many large- or food-animal vets are retiring and not many new vets want …

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