Feature in the March 2019 issue of Wellington The Magazine
The horses at the Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center perform miracles every day. Whether by carrying a person coping with a physical disability to a sense of independence, providing comfort to a soul suffering from emotional trauma or teaching a child beyond the confines of a classroom, the Vinceremos horses are heroes. But they aren’t the only ones wearing capes. A local group of dedicated and passionate equine veterinarians share in the magic.
The veterinarians of the Palm Beach Equine Clinic (PBEC), based in the heart of Wellington, have been caring for horses in South Florida for decades. Founded by Dr. Paul Wollenman in 1981, PBEC has grown to include a staff of 40 veterinarians, with five boarded specialists and the most state-of-the-art facility in the country. Situated in the winter equestrian capital of the world, Palm Beach Equine Clinic treats the top-performing show jumping, dressage, polo and racing athletes throughout the year.
Official Veterinarians of Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center
In addition, the clinic is a saving grace for the horses of Vinceremos. The 23 specially selected horses stay true to the nonprofit’s mission of conquering disability and hardship in people of all ages. Founded in 1982, Vinceremos, based in Loxahatchee Groves, serves people from all stations in life with physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities through the power of equine therapy. The treatments they offer include therapeutic riding and carriage driving, hippotherapy, equine-assisted learning and equine-assisted psychotherapy.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic does its part by keeping the horses healthy and happy with pro-bono veterinary care.
“We have the people and, most importantly, the horses, of South Florida to thank for the success that PBEC has enjoyed over the years,” said Palm Beach Equine Clinic President Dr. Scott Swerdlin, who spearheaded the clinic’s involvement with Vinceremos in 2011. “It is our honor to give back to that community through our work with Vinceremos. The whole team is dedicated to each and every horse we treat, as well as to the riders who love them.”
While their commitment to the nonprofit is extensive, it’s not about the hours spent or the cost of time and supplies. Swerdlin and his team focus on a bigger goal; healing horses so they can heal people. “There’s no greater reward than seeing how the horses of Vinceremos benefit their riders,” he said. “You see the riders light up and how excited they are to be on those horses.”
Swerdlin is proud of the clinic’s work with Vinceremos. “I continually remind my team that it is a privilege to treat the caliber of horses we have in Wellington and that should compel us to give back to the community,” he said. “The response from Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians has been overwhelming. The entire team has volunteered to be involved.”
From routine treatments and services, such as vaccinations and health exams, to emergency care, Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians are available to Vinceremos night and day. Last summer, such emergency care was called on, and one Vinceremos horse got a second chance at life thanks to a group of devoted veterinarians.
Vinceremos favorite Clark Kent — a sturdy black mount with an eye as kind as they come — suffered an injury to his right front leg. The laceration extended into his tendon sheath, which is a layer of membrane around a tendon on the back of the lower leg. What could have been a simple cut on the surface was much more serious.
Initially treated on-site at Vinceremos by Dr. Marilyn Connor, Clark Kent was then transported to PBEC for surgery to repair the injury. The case turned into a team effort and involved the work of surgeons Dr. Weston Davis and Dr. Michael Myhre, as well as Dr. Janet Greenfield.
After surgery and a recovery period at PBEC’s onsite equine hospital, Clark Kent returned to Vinceremos to recover. He was back to his therapy work by fall, giving riders a sense of independence and confidence with his skills on the lunge line and his forward way of moving.
“This treatment was no easy feat, but the veterinarians and staff of Palm Beach Equine Clinic took a tragedy and turned it into a miracle. Clark Kent was surrounded by extraordinary veterinarians and technicians throughout his care,” Vinceremos Director of Development Susan Guinan said. “The diligence of this team makes miracles happen every day. We are so appreciative of Palm Beach Equine Clinic and their team of veterinarians. They give so much support to Vinceremos and the horses here. They keep them in top shape so we can impact our community in such a special way through equine therapy.”
Rewarding for Horses and Humans
For Connor, it’s cases like Clark Kent’s that convinced her to pursue veterinary medicine. Growing up around horses, she spent time volunteering with a therapeutic riding program before attending veterinary school at Texas A&M.
“It was a very rewarding experience to be able to give back to a cause that is important to me. And even more so now that I can do that in a different capacity as a veterinarian,” said Connor.
She can often be found checking on the horses of Vinceremos while on the job. “Being able to help horses as special as the ones at Vinceremos and the people who love them is what ultimately made me realize I wanted to be an equine veterinarian,” Connor said.
The world-renowned Palm Beach Equine Clinic, Official Veterinarian of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, FL, is the proud sponsor of the $391,000 CSI5* Grand Prix during “Saturday Night Lights” at WEF Week 7.
Who: Some of the world’s most accomplished show jumping athletes. Once finalized, the order-of-go will be posted HERE.
What: The $391,000 Palm Beach Equine Clinic CSI5* Grand Prix
When: Saturday, February 23, during “Saturday Night Lights” at 7 pm ET. Gates open at 6 pm. Free admission and $20/car parking.
Where: Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. Directions can be found HERE.
In addition to their sponsorship of this week’s CSI5* Grand Prix and of the 3’3″ Amateur-Owner Hunter 36 and Over division throughout WEF, Palm Beach Equine Clinic also provides state-of-the-art veterinary care to the horses of both the year-round residents and visitors of South Florida. Palm Beach Equine Clinic’s technologically advanced clinic is conveniently located at the intersection of Southfields Road and Pierson Road in the heart of Wellington, just minutes from PBIEC, the Equestrian Village, and the International Polo Club Palm Beach.
The expertise and dedication of Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians is also available to all competing horses at WEF and AGDF thanks to an annex office located adjacent to the WEF stabling office on the PBIEC showgrounds as well as at the main Palm Beach Equine Clinic location. Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians are on-call daily at the annex office to assist competitors throughout the shows with diagnostic evaluations and treatments, as well as emergency and standard horse care needs.
Official Veterinarians of 2019 WEF and AGDF Circuits
World-renowned veterinary facility Palm Beach Equine Clinic (PBEC) will return as the Official Veterinarians of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) running January 9 through March 31 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL.
A proponent and supporter of horse sport in Wellington and throughout the world, Palm Beach Equine Clinic has served both the year-round residents and visiting horses of south Florida for more than three decades. PBEC’s state-of-the-art clinic is conveniently located at the intersection of Southfields Road and Pierson Road in the heart of Wellington, just minutes from PBIEC, the Equestrian Village, and the International Polo Club Palm Beach. PBEC’s talented team of veterinarians offers its clients and the horses of referring veterinarians unmatched care and an innovative approach to standard and emergency services.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic’s goal is to provide a definite diagnosis and never have to refer a case. In other words, PBEC is the equivalent of the Mayo Clinic for horses.
“Combining the tools of our imaging department, surgical talent, and overall standard of treatment allows us to provide services far beyond what other facilities can provide,” said PBEC President Dr. Scott Swerdlin, who leads a team of more than 40 veterinarians at PBEC. “But even with all the technology we provide, we need the people to make it all happen. That is exactly what we have; veterinarians skilled in diagnostics, technicians dedicated to caring for the horses before, after, and during any procedure, and world-renowned surgeons who can take a diagnosis and treat the problem with positive results for horse and owner. It takes a team and we have one of the best in the world at Palm Beach Equine Clinic.”
PBEC’s services available to new, returning, and referred clients include:
Advanced Diagnostic Offerings
- Computed Tomography (CT)
- Standing Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- Nuclear Scintigraphy (bone scan)
- Board-Certified Radiologist on Staff
- Digital Radiography and Ultrasonography
- Three boarded surgeons skilled in performance-related injuries
- Standing surgery pit
- Surgical residency program
- State-of-the-art surgical suite
- Quarantine facilities with secure isolation and individual air flow systems
The expertise and dedication of PBEC veterinarians will be available to all competing horses at WEF and AGDF thanks to an annex office located adjacent to the WEF stabling office on the PBIEC showgrounds as well as at the main PBEC clinic location. PBEC veterinarians are on-call daily at the annex office to assist competitors throughout the shows with diagnostic evaluations and treatments, as well as emergency and standard horse care needs.
“Our location, talents, and dedication to the Wellington community and beyond have helped Palm Beach Equine Clinic to offer the best possible care to some of the world’s top equines during the winter show season,” continued Dr. Swerdlin. “Additionally, our annex office places us in the heart of it all, making advanced veterinary care convenient to equestrians competing at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. We are very proud of both facilities and the veterinarians who work there, but we are even more proud to be trusted with the care of such special animals!”
For more information on what PBEC has to offer horses competing at WEF and AGDF, stop by the annex office located next to the stabling office on the WEF showgrounds, visit www.EquineClinic.com, or call 561-793-1599.
Save The Date
In addition to being named the Official Veterinarians of WEF and AGDF, PBEC’s own veterinarians will again participate in WEF’s popular Lunch & Learn education series during the 2019 season. Mark your calendars for a presentation on Sport Horse Health on Thursday, March 7, at 11:30 a.m. in The Wellington Club at the WEF showgrounds. Admission to the Lunch & Learn series is free for riders, trainers, and owners and includes a buffet lunch and a chance to win exciting prizes from 2019 Lunch & Learn sponsors.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic is proud to serve as the local headquarters for emergency services and equine diagnostics during the winter show season in Wellington, FL. As the official veterinary hospital of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF), Palm Beach Equine Clinic has been the premier surgical facility in Wellington for over three decades.
While competing in South Florida, horses and riders from around the globe have access to Palm Beach Equine Clinic’s state-of-the-art hospital for all of their sport horse needs. Palm Beach Equine Clinic has a team of over 30 veterinarians, which includes three Board-Certified Surgeons, a Board-Certified equine Radiologist, and numerous other experts in their fields. All competitors and their traveling veterinarians are welcome for the support of services and collaboration throughout the season.
Referral Veterinarians Welcome
The referring relationship between veterinarians is most commonly seen in the specialty departments of surgery, internal medicine, ophthalmology, and advanced diagnostic imaging. At Palm Beach Equine Clinic, the advanced diagnostic imaging and surgical technology is unmatched, and the three Board-Certified Surgeons are skilled in many procedures that require high levels of expertise and advanced current equipment. As a result, many veterinarians refer their clients to the facility for specialty services.
Dr. Weston Davis, one of the Board-Certified Surgeons on the staff at Palm Beach Equine Clinic, works with many referral cases. Throughout the year, veterinarians from all over Florida frequently refer their clients to Palm Beach Equine Clinic for surgical procedures and advanced diagnostic imaging. The referring veterinarians may range anywhere from general practitioners to other surgeons that do not have access to surgical facilities or the most modern diagnostic imaging modalities while on the road.
“As a rule, we are friendly with referring doctors and take care of their clients with as much high-level care and professionalism as possible,” Dr. Davis stated. “It is important to us to maintain good relationships with the veterinarians that refer to us for specialty work. We always try to facilitate whatever level of involvement they desire. If they want to come and be there for the surgical procedure, we make that happen, and if they just want to send the case and not be as involved, we can do that as well. However, we also always collaborate with the referring veterinarian and the client as a team. If they send a horse in for a surgical procedure, we are going to do the procedure and then connect the client with the referring physician for the follow-up.”
Talented Surgeons and Advanced Diagnostic Imaging
The cutting-edge services available at Palm Beach Equine Clinic are made possible by the expertise of the hospital’s talented surgeons, along with the assistance of state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging and comprehensive surgical and medical resources. The combination brings many of the best veterinarians in the world to Palm Beach Equine Clinic for assistance with their most complex cases.
Among the hospital’s features, the latest in surgical technology enables less invasive operations that result in faster recovery times for the horse. Dr. Davis explained how diagnostic imaging is used during surgery to help guide procedures and assure the best possible result.
“Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and other advanced diagnostic imaging modalities can often be used for three-dimensional mapping to help enhance the surgical technique,” he noted. “There are some fractures in particular where the surgeon can map out the exact configuration of the fracture off of the MRI scan. We are then able to place markers with the MRI to guide a more exact, refined surgery.
“Intra-operatively, x-rays are taken to view progress, particularly for fracture repairs,” Dr. Davis continued. “The digital radiographs allows us to view the fracture in two planes to ensure optimal screw placement and fracture repair. Ultrasound is also frequently used in surgery for some of the more delicate procedures, specifically with soft tissue.”
Other surgical procedures may be guided with Arthroscopy, which aids in visualization of a joint; Laparoscopy, which uses a camera inserted into the abdomen; or Endoscopy, which is used in upper airway procedures. With the most advanced diagnostic imaging technology onsite, Palm Beach Equine Clinic is the go-to hospital for equine owners and referral veterinarians from around the world during the winter season in Wellington.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic provides experience, knowledge, availability, and the very best care for its clients. Make Palm Beach Equine Clinic a part of your team! To find out more, please call 561-793-1599.
As the official veterinarians of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, FL, Palm Beach Equine Clinic welcomes all veterinarians, local and worldwide, to utilize their services and facilities throughout the winter season.
Locating Riding Distance from the Horse Show
Located just down the road from the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC), PBEC offers state-of-the-art surgical tools, highly advanced diagnostic imaging equipment, three board-certified surgeons, one of the top board-certified equine radiologists in the country, and 28 accomplished and knowledgeable veterinarians available to treat clientele of any discipline.
During the winter season, the veterinarians of PBEC donate their time and services to the world-class competitors of the Winter Equestrian Festival. Week eight of the 12-week WEF circuit is currently underway with CSIO competition, and PBEC welcomes the international team veterinarians to make use of their services as horses and riders compete in the prestigious Nations’ Cup classes.
Horse and rider teams from all around the world will be competing in the esteemed senior Nations’ Cup on Friday night, March 4, beginning at 7 p.m. Hollow Creek Farm will be hosting the Children’s, Junior and Young Rider FEI Nations’ Cup team events on Saturday evening, March 5, 2016. The teams have flown from over ten different countries throughout South America, North America, and abroad to compete this week.
Proud to be Part of Prestigious Competiton
For PBEC President, Dr. Scott Swerdlin, the Nations’ Cup events provide some of the most exciting competition of the circuit and he is proud to have his veterinarians well-represented.
“Those two nights that we have the Nations’ Cup classes, everyone is so competitive and proud of their country and proud of the horses in their country,” said Dr. Swerdlin. “Nations’ Cup week is one of the highlights of WEF and we really appreciate having the opportunity to be supportive of all of the teams. For us, it is just a privilege to be a part of such a special competition. We enjoy working with the different veterinarians and they are always welcome to come to PBEC if they are traveling with a team. Our motto is ‘Make us a part of your team,’ and we hope that visiting doctors will take advantage of the world-class services that we have to offer.”
All-Inclusive Equine Hospital, Imaging and Emergency Services
PBEC’s Dr. Richard Wheeler spoke of the support that the clinic is able to provide to the teams as they compete throughout the week in Nations’ Cup classes.
“Being a full-service facility, we are proud to provide support to the international teams,” said Dr. Wheeler. “It is great to see the international horse community come together and it is fun for us to build relationships with vets from all over the world. We often have vets come to visit us and spend time in our hospital, and likewise, we visit them in their facilities.
“We are here to support them,” Dr. Wheeler continued. “In an emergency situation, we are here to provide hospitalization and ambulatory services. We offer advanced imaging services such as MRI and Nuclear Scintigraphy, we have a fantastic team of internal medicine specialists that includes three board-certified surgeons, and we have one of very few board certified equine radiologists in the world.”
Dr. Wheeler added, “PBEC always has a veterinarian on the show grounds any time competition is going on. We also have a new Annex office on the show grounds this year so that the doctors can quickly and safely treat horses in a clean environment. The hospital is then ready for emergencies 24/7, with specialists, equipment, and personnel ready to handle any situation.”
Surgical Services Available When Needed
PBEC Staff Surgeon Dr. Jorge Gomez serves as the team veterinarian for Colombia and Venezuela. Dr. Gomez finds his partnership with PBEC very important throughout the season.
Dr. Gomez explained his responsibilities as team vet, stating, “I am in charge of the health and soundness of the horses in the team. Before the events, and once the horses for the team are chosen, I look at all of the team horses individually to make sure the horses are in good condition to compete. We check all the health papers and passports to make sure they are up to date. During the competition days, I perform horse inspections before and after every class. In conjunction with the grooms, we also make sure that the horses are in normal condition with no modifications of their normal behavior.”
If there are any concerns of a horse’s well-being, Dr. Gomez and all of the team veterinarians have the diagnostic services of PBEC at their fingertips. Along with the advanced imaging capabilities and emergency surgical services, teams can make use of PBEC’s niche offerings, such as chiropractic care or acupuncture as well.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic provides experience, knowledge, availability, and the very best care for the horses of Wellington. Have them be a part of your team!
Palm Beach Equine Clinic (PBEC) proudly serves as the official veterinarians of the world-renowned Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, FL. Adjacent to the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in the heart of Wellington, PBEC’s state-of-the-art facilities and world-class team of 28 veterinarians are there for every equestrian’s needs throughout the WEF and AGDF circuits. PBEC is proud to work for its multi-discipline clientele with the aid of the most advanced technologies and medical treatments available.
Official Horse Show Veterinarian
“Wellington is a fabulous place, and I have watched the growth of WEF as well as AGDF over the years, and it has been exponential,” said Dr. Scott Swerdlin, President of Palm Beach Equine Clinic. “For us to be part of that growth, and part of the explosion of the sport horse industry here in Wellington is a real honor. We want to give back to the community, as well as contribute to all of the great things that Mark Bellissimo has done for the horse show world.”
“I love to see the good horses return, and every year it seems like better and better horses are competing from all over the world,” Swerdlin added. “The quality of horses and the quality of competition always continues to improve. To watch these fabulous horse and rider combinations in all of these different disciplines is such a treat.”
Global Satellite Services
With top horses and riders from around the world spending their winters in Wellington, PBEC is proud to have veterinarians on the team that represent many different countries. PBEC currently employs veterinarians from Argentina, Uruguay, and Colombia. It is a privilege for the team at PBEC to work together with many of the best veterinarians from all over the world as they travel to Wellington with their clients.
All-Inclusive Equine Hospital
Palm Beach Equine Clinic features its full-service surgical center and intensive care hospital located only minutes from the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center show grounds. Board certified surgeons, primary care veterinarians and hospital technicians are scheduled for emergency on call assistance 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to treat, monitor and care for critical cases. With exceptional veterinarians and a staff of highly trained hospital technicians, PBEC’s surgical suite and staff are prepared to handle all kinds of emergencies, day and night.
The Palm Beach Equine Clinic facility houses the most advanced imaging technologies available, including a standing Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Nuclear Scintigraphy (Bone Scan), Ultrasonography, Digital Radiography and Endoscopy. PBEC is unique in that a Board Certified Radiologist is on site to interpret images and assist with diagnosis for rapid results. PBEC’s on-site, full-service laboratory equipped with hematology, chemistry, and microbiology equipment provides veterinarians with the ability to quickly evaluate blood tests for critical cases.
The newest addition this year for PBEC is the Annex Veterinary Office located on the show grounds at the Winter Equestrian Festival. The wooden barn located at the beginning of the north grounds entrance is now an office space, pharmacy for supplies and medication pick up, and examination areas.
For more information on the facility or in case of an emergency, please call (561) 793-1599 to contact an on-call veterinarian.
A leader in sport horse medicine, Palm Beach Equine Clinic (PBEC) is a mainstay in the equestrian-centric Village of Wellington in South Florida. Known as the ‘Winter Equestrian Capital of the World,’ Wellington welcomes equestrians from around the globe to compete. Palm Beach Equine Clinic is the Official Veterinarians of events such as the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) and the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF). PBEC is dedicated to providing exceptional care to the horses and equally committed to strengthening relationships within the local community.
PBEC President Dr. Scott Swerdlin strongly encourages his veterinarians to share their expertise and get involved in philanthropic community relations in Wellington. Many of the veterinarians generously donate their time and energy to many different projects throughout the community each year.
Official Veterinarians of Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center
One local organization that PBEC annually supports in various ways is Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center (VTRC). Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit corporation that provides therapeutic horseback riding to those with disabilities and hippotherapy in Palm Beach County since 1982. Dr. Swerdlin sits on Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center’s Board of Directors and also serves on the organization’s Executive Committee.
“Vinceremos is an exceptional organization,” Swerdlin stated. “There is nothing that you can possibly do that will make you feel better than spending time at Vinceremos and being involved in that organization. It is horse oriented, but what they are doing is providing solutions for children who are disabled. The way they light up and how excited they are to be on those horses is amazing to see. All of a sudden, that disadvantage disappears. You see it in their faces, you see it in their smiles. And, you see it in every aspect of their well-being. To see the improvement in the health and the capabilities of these children is amazing.”
All of the doctors at PBEC have been involved with Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center in some way, but two women who have gone above and beyond for the program are Dr. Janet Greenfield-Davis and Dr. Jordan Lewis.
“Janet just had her second child and Jordan just had her first child, and they both put a lot of time and energy into helping other children,” Dr. Swerdlin noted. “What I try to do is coach a philosophy, and that philosophy is how fortunate we all are to be here in this community taking care of these kinds of horses and clients, and that we owe something back. We need to appreciate what we are doing and try to give back to the community.”
For Dr. Greenfield-Davis, donating her time and expertise at Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center is fun and rewarding work. She serves as the primary veterinarian to VTRC, treating the horses on an as-needed basis and helping with pre-purchase exams and evaluations of donated horses. As Official Veterinarians, Palm Beach Equine Clinic offers the talents and knowledge of all its doctors, who are called upon when needed.
“It is a spectacular program,” said Dr. Greenfield Davis. “I have been working with Vinceremos for the last four years, and I have learned so much. What they provide is a huge benefit for those kids. Even the kids who volunteer that are shy or have communication problems, they, too, just blossom there.
“I think it is important for us to give back to the community,” Dr. Greenfield-Davis added. “We are a rather large fixture in the community. We are one of biggest equine hospitals in the area and for us to help and contribute to their program is important for all of us.”
She continued, “Everybody at the clinic has been there at one point or another; everybody chips in. The clinic foots the bill for all of the horses there and all of the official veterinarians and surgeons donate their time and services. It is fun, too. They invite us to their horse shows and events, and we all have a good time.”
Additional Charity Involvement in Wellington
In addition to PBEC’s contributions with VTRC, the clinic donates to JustWorld International, an organization of equestrians funding and sustaining education, nutrition, and health programs for children in Cambodia, Guatemala, and Honduras. PBEC has supported JustWorld International since its inception.
Other charitable work includes donations to the Great Charity Challenge, presented by Fidelity Investments® (GCC), which is hosted each year during the Winter Equestrian Festival. The pro-am team competition has distributed more than $7.5 million to over 150 nonprofits in Palm Beach County over the last six years. Founded in 2010 by Equestrian Sport Productions CEO Mark Bellissimo and his daughter Paige, the Great Charity Challenge has seen the equestrian community take charitable giving to a new level through their love of horses. PBEC is proud to be a part of such a fantastic event.
“The Great Charity Challenge is so much fun. You see these riders just barreling to try to win for their charity,” said Dr. Swerdlin. “Vinceremos was chosen (as a charity recipient for the GCC) this year, so we are very excited and hope to have a big turnout. I enjoy the competition and the mystery of who is going to win and what the charities will get. The way they have it devised so that it is such a win-win for all of the charities is wonderful. It is just fun for everybody, and it is such a good cause.”
Local Veterinary Educational Opportunities
Official Veterinarians for Wellington High School Equine Pre-Vet Program
Education of the public is also on the forefront of PBEC’s community involvement. Currently, through Wellington High School’s (WHS) Equine Pre-Vet Program, PBEC has a hands-on program for students looking to pursue a career in veterinary medicine.
Wellington High School seniors that choose to pursue the Equine Pre-Vet Program have a wealth of knowledge at their fingertips with one of the most advanced equine medical centers just down the road. Through the program at WHS and the generosity of the veterinarians at PBEC, students in the Equine Pre-Vet Program have the unique opportunity to learn all about the profession by shadowing the very best.
Knowledge from the entire Veterinary Team
Dr. Janet Greenfield-Davis is also very involved with this program and mentors the senior students. “We try to play an active role in our community, and we really enjoy having the kids visit the clinic,” Greenfield-Davis stated.
Dr. Swerdlin added, “We have board certified radiologists, we have three boarded surgeons, we have boarded internal medicine veterinarians, and we have boarded
radiologists, we have three boarded surgeons, we have boarded internal medicine veterinarians, and we have boarded ophthalmologists. We also have the most high-tech diagnostic equipment, so for a young veterinarian, PBEC is paradise. We like spending the time to teach American veterinarians as well as foreign veterinarians. I think we are improving the success and the health of horses all over the world by offering those opportunities.”
Palm Beach Equine Clinic enjoys getting involved in the community and looks forward to continued involvement in 2016. Palm Beach Equine Clinic provides experience, knowledge, availability, and the very best care for the horses of Wellington. Have them be a part of your team! To find out more and speak with an official veterinarian, call 561-793-1599.
As you prepare to compete, the partnership with your veterinary team is critical for your sport horse’s health and success. It is comforting to know that the finest equine hospital and sport horse care in the Southeast is less than one mile away from the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center and across the street from the Global Dressage Festival. The veterinarians and staff of Palm Beach Equine Clinic are respected throughout the industry for their advanced level of care and steadfast commitment to the equine industry and horse care.
Palm Beach Equine Clinic is proudly the Official Veterinarian of the Winter Equestrian Festival and the Global Dressage Festival, two of the world’s most competitive equestrian horse show circuits.
The team is onsite at all the competitions to provide veterinary services and is ready to step up in case of an emergency. This dedication has become invaluable over the years to many competitors that have needed their expertise in veterinary medicine.
As the consistent leader in sport horse medicine, Palm Beach Equine Clinic provides 24-hour coverage at their all-inclusive on-site hospital; complete with full surgical and internal medicine capabilities, laboratory, pharmacy and advanced diagnostic imaging center.
State-of-the-art diagnostic imaging services include:
- Standing magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Nuclear Scintigraphy (bone scan)
- Digital ultrasonography and radiography
- Standing computed tomography (CT)
Furthermore, Palm Beach Equine Clinic performs thorough lameness examinations, extensive pre-purchase/pre-lease evaluations, dentistry, podiatry consultation, and complete reproductive services. Palm Beach Equine Clinic also provides alternative medicine services such as chiropractic and acupuncture therapies, as well as, resourceful preventative medicine programs.
The veterinarians of Palm Beach Equine Clinic are are top-level academics frequently published in popular equine magazines and national veterinary journals. One of the more recent members to the Board of Directors at the Palm Beach Equine Clinic is Dr. Richard Wheeler, whose primary area of interest is equine lameness and sports medicine. He is passionate about his role in maintaining sport horses to enjoy a long and successful career.
What are the latest innovations that allow you to administer cutting-edge care to sport horses?
Dr. Richard Wheeler: There are many exciting new developments in equine sports medicine. The addition of imaging modalities such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) together with recent improvements in digital radiography, ultrasound and Nuclear Scintigraphy allow us to be more specific with our diagnoses and image areas of the horse that we were previously unable to image. Furthermore, regenerative therapies such as platelet rich plasma (PRP), bone marrow concentrate and the use of stem cells offer exciting opportunities with regard to the treatment of a wide variety of conditions, including soft tissue and joint injuries.
What do you find separates the most successful equine competitor from the rest?
Dr. Richard Wheeler: Across the field of disciplines, I believe attention to detail and a good team are the most important factors. As a veterinarian, I try to work closely with the owner, rider, trainer, farrier, groom and often many other support staff members. I will often examine the high level horses every week during the intense winter season and we will work together to make subtle adjustments to keep the horse performing at their very best.
How do you feel about your move to the USA and Palm Beach Equine Clinic ten years ago?
Dr. Richard Wheeler: Time has gone fast! There is nowhere in the world like Wellington, Florida, it is a wonderful place to live and practice veterinary medicine. Palm Beach Equine Clinic is an amazing family with a wealth of experience and knowledge to draw on. I think our greatest strength is our team approach; we will spend hours discussing and debating the best approach to cases and I think this is incredibly valuable to our clients. It is of great value to me as a veterinarian to have the high quality equipment we have invested in as well as the support of our Board Certified Surgeons (Drs. Brusie, Gomez and Davis) and our Board Certified Radiologist Dr. Puchalski. I am a strong believer in developing a specialty as a veterinarian so having the depth of support at Palm Beach Equine Clinic allows me to concentrate on lameness and sports medicine with the capability to provide my clients with doctors who specialize in other areas such as alternative therapies, reproduction and dentistry.
Dr. Wheeler’s extensive experience with a variety of equine performance sports advanced after graduating from the Royal Veterinary College in London in 2002. Dr. Wheeler completed an internship at the world-renowned Newmarket Equine Hospital, specializing in surgery and sports medicine, before moving to Palm Beach Equine Clinic in 2005. Licensed to practice in Florida, Kentucky and New York, as well as the United Kingdom and Europe, Dr. Wheeler is an FEI official veterinarian. A horseman himself, Dr. Wheeler has competed in a variety of equine sports including eventing, dressage, show jumping and polo.
Many international Grand Prix riders, such as one of the United States’ top Dressage riders, Tuny Page, attributes the health and soundness of her horses to Dr. Wheeler and the Palm Beach Equine Clinic team.
“Richard is a fine veterinarian with great depth of experience and super instincts. On top of that, he communicates beautifully with me as the client and my grooms as my horse’s managers. Richard is very secure in his positions about diagnosis and treatment of the horses, which allows him the ability to communicate openly with other veterinarians and therapists. This works particularly well when I am traveling with the horses and need to have open communication between other veterinarians and Richard. Richard has always treated my staff with the respect and integrity they deserve and the result is tremendous trust within our team. The most important recommendation for Dr. Wheeler is, quite simply, that my horses are happy, healthy and sound.”
International Grand Prix Dressage Rider Tuny Page
Additionally, International Dressage star, Mikala Munter (DEN), who recently won the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 4*, knows the importance of equine health and states praise for Dr. Wheeler.
“Dr. Wheeler from Palm Beach Equine Clinic has a good eye and feel for what a horse needs, and he is the best veterinarian for a sport horse”
International Grand Prix Dressage Rider Mikala Munter
Palm Beach Equine Clinic is committed to provide care for your equine athlete throughout the year and across the globe, and support at shows across the USA, Europe and South America.
Featured in the March 2016 issue of Wellington The Magazine, Palm Beach Equine Clinic is the Official Veterinarian of Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center.