Steve Bowen never anticipated he would become a veterinarian when he was growing up.
Yet for the past 35 years, Bowen has dedicated his life to the pet community of the Imperial Valley.
Through his practice, Valley Veterinary Clinic, Bowen has come to know and appreciate a majority of the community, which is one thing he will miss when he retires later this year.
“I have one of the few professions where you can pet and hug your patients,” Bowen said. “But I think the timing is right and I’m ready to see what the next page of my life will look like.”
Bowen said he is taking the time to find the right veterinarian to take over his practice and continue to provide the same care he has offered to his clients over the years.
“We want it to be as smooth a transition as possible,” Bowen said. “We want our replacement to maintain the continuum of the practice.”
Despite stepping away from animal care as a profession, Bowen said he’d like to continue to care for animals as a hobby.
“I was one of the vets at Iditarod, a 1,000-mile sled dog race in Alaska,” Bowen said. “I’d like to do that again. It combines the outdoors and veterinary medicine.”
While Bowen will miss his daily interaction with people and their pets, he and his wife, Debby, are looking forward to making the move to Montana.
“We have a house there,” Bowen said. “We both like the cold and I enjoy the forest and the scenery.”
Bowen said although he is sad to step away from his passion he is happy to know he and his wife were able to serve the community.
“My wife has been a key part of the practice,” Bowen said. “We kept saying we’d do it for five more years, but it’s time to turn the page.”
Staff Writer Karina Lopez can be reached at 760-337-3439 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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