Over the last fiscal year, veterinarians and staff at the James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital at Colorado State University saw nearly 47,000 patients.

Most were dogs – some 32,000 canines, to be specific. The pups were followed by cats, horses and livestock, including 181 llamas and alpacas, 122 sheep and 200 pigs.

Veterinarians in the Department of Avian, Exotic, and Zoological Medicine saw more than 2,300 patients, including 711 birds, 10 fish, 326 reptiles and more than 1,300 small mammals, such as mice, rats, gerbils and hamsters.

Here’s a look back at some of our patients’ stories that made us smile, and #proudtobe.

Tess the penguin

In December 2014, CSU veterinarians treated Tess, the world’s oldest African penguin, for an aggressive form of skin cancer on her face. A resident of the Pueblo Zoo, she passed away in February 2015 at the age of 40. According to zoo officials, the average life expectancy of African Penguins is 15 to 20 years. read more

Brutus the quadruple-amputee dog

Brutus learned to walk again, following a bad case of frostbite that required amputations of all four paws. CSU orthopedics experts teamed up with OrthoPets, an animal prosthetics developer in Denver, to help give Brutus a new lease on life. read more

Jabu the elephant

It took two months to grow 1 billion stem cells from donor elephants in a CSU lab to prepare a treatment for Jabu, an injured African elephant with osteoarthritis. Dr. Valerie Johnson performed the stem cell procedure in March 2019 in Botswana. see more

Lewis the llama

Formerly known as Ike, Lewis the llama was abandoned in Yellowstone National Park in the summer of 2018 after he removed himself from a halter that pressed on a wound on his jaw. CSU veterinarians would eventually treat the wound and performed dental surgery on him in September 2019. read more

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Marley the bear

Marley became one of CSU’s most celebrated patients when she came to the James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital for surgery to clean, repair and heal her fractured joints in 2014. The bear was rescued from life in a concrete pen in Georgia before being brought to a refuge in Colorado. read more

Annie the orphaned kitten

A shelter kitten from New Mexico named Annie was given a second chance when CSU veterinarians performed corrective surgery for a congenital heart defect in January 2019. read more

Bijou the expectant mare

Nearly one year ago, Bijou arrived at the CSU equine emergency service in rough shape; she had lost a lot of blood, her blood pressure and red blood cell count were low. The underlying cause of the bleeding was a fungal infection – and to complicate matters, Bijou was five months pregnant. read more

Sabbath the dog with heart

CSU’s Dr. Brian Scansen collaborated with Dr. Justin Strote from UCHealth to perform a first-ever cardiology procedure on a dog in early 2019. They successfully completed a transcatheter aortic valve replacement on Sabbath, a malamute from northern California. read more

Yeager the miracle dog

When Yeager, an American Pointing Labrador from Casper, Wyoming, was hit by a car in July 2018, his family thought his “nine lives” might be up until they brought him to CSU. read more

Boris the polar bear

In November 2017, CSU’s Dr. Valerie Johnson traveled to the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Washington state to provide a stem cell treatment for Boris the polar bear, then 32 years old. Johnson grew the stem cells in a lab at CSU, using fatty tissue from the bear, who had developed arthritis in his old age.  read more

Mini the cat

In October 2019, veterinarians at CSU discovered that Mini, 19, had a mass in her bladder. After a dose of radiation, Mini was able to leave the hospital and get back to her everyday routine at home, which includes walking the perimeter of the property and basking in the sunshine. She had previously taken part in a clinical trial at CSU for a drug that helps treat chronic kidney disease.

Skye the wolfdog

Veterinarians at CSU performed emergency surgery on Skye, a blind wolf dog in August 2019. She was found wandering in West Virginia, where officials said she had been chained to a tree and rarely fed for years before she was rescued. Following surgery and treatment, Skye’s vision returned. She is now living at the WOLF Sanctuary in Northern Colorado, where CSU’s Dr. Valerie Johnson is a staff veterinarian. read more

Mahali the giraffe

Veterinarians from CSU traveled to Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in 2017 to help Mahali, a 14-year-old giraffe with arthritis pain in his front left hoof. read more

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California Chrome the racehorse

Although Triple Crown contender and racing phenom California Chrome never visited the teaching hospital, the nasal strip that he wore during the 2014 Belmont Stakes was developed by equine veterinarian and CSU D.V.M. alumnus Dr. Ed Blach and his business partner and fellow veterinarian Dr. Jim Chiapetta. read more

Colorado State University’s James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital houses 79 veterinarians on clinics, representing 28 veterinary specialties under one roof. They’re backed by leading technologies – and the expertise and care of 650 faculty, interns, residents, technicians, staff, students and volunteers. All here for you.