Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald, veteran veterinarian and comedian

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Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald—a veterinarian for 35 years, featured on Animal Planet’s “Emergency Vets,” which aired for 11 seasons—recounts his pre-vet, 25-year stint working security for Rolling Stones tours, and how that period ended when Keith Richards urged him to get on with his life, maybe go back to school. 1200px-Kevin_FitzgeraldFitzgerald explains how, in heeding Richards’ advice, he decided to do something as challenging and ambitious as going to veterinary school. He addresses what drew him to practicing emergency medicine, and outlines how the opportunity for the long-running “Emergency Vets” came about, adding he never felt hampered treating all those animals at Alameda East Veterinary Hospital while the TV cameras were running. (He touches on a more recent Animal Planet Kevin-Photo-1-hi-res-2-3series he also starred in, “E-Vet Interns.”). A veteran comedian who performs upwards of 100 shows a year, Fitzgerald describes how he wandered into the stand-up world, and sharing bills with such stalwarts as Joan Rivers, Norm Macdonald and Kevin Nealon. Fitzgerald talks about the scope of his conservation-related work, affiliated with the Denver Zoo, agreeing with my observation that many zoos’ conservation efforts amount to gussied-up propaganda or outright baloney—while providing details of big tracts of land in Mongolia and elsewhere that the Zoo has acquired for its conservation campaigns, which Fitzgerald has contributed to over the course of multiple visits. He also examines the climate change-produced challenges that polar bears face, offering details based on his trips to Churchill, Canada. (http://drkevinfitzgerald.com)

 

5115e1_188eeab4b675406dade0ba6eeaf3efa8~mv2.jpg_srz_175_175_85_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzALSO: I spoke briefly with Adam Sugalski, executive director of One Protest—perhaps best known for their significant role in helping halt the Florida bear hunt—who has, for more than a decade protested the Ringling Bros. circus, and offers his reflections on the end of Ringling, which had given its final performance a few days prior. Among his observations: that many media outlets, in their Farewell Ringling coverage, had generally given the circus a pass on its chronic mistreatment of animals. (www.oneprotest.org)

COMEDY CORNER: Aziz Ansari’s “Lady With The Puppies” (http://azizansari.com)

MUSIC: Rebekah Pulley’s “Talking Animals Theme,” instrumentals

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: The Beatles’ “Blackbird”

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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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