Samantha Koch, CVT

Veterinary medicine is a second career for me. After spending 6.5 years as a full-time law enforcement officer, I decided to go back to school and obtain my Veterinary Technology degree. At the time, I was the oldest student in my class and took on a leadership role mentoring and tutoring fellow students. While attending school, I also worked as a CSR triaging pets over the phone for a local emergency clinic that is now owned by BluePearl Pet Hospital. During my large animal internship at an equine primary clinic, I developed a love for working with horses.

After graduation, I remained a relief technician at BluePearl and started full time as the only certified veterinary technician for the equine clinic. I became the Pharmacy and Inventory Manager and enjoyed the challenge of controlled substance logs. I loved every minute of working with the horses and formed close relationships with the doctors and staff at the clinic. Unfortunately, the physical demands and inadequate pay quickly too its toll. I began searching for other opportunities to remain in the field. I knew I would burnout very quickly if I worked in emergency medicine full time. I considered small animal primary care and began browsing job boards when I stumbled across SafetyCall International and The Pet Poison Helpline. Admittedly, I thought it was too good to be true! I was so skeptical that I looked at the posting no less than 4 times over the course of a year before finally applying.

When I began the interview process, I quickly realized SafetyCall took the position very seriously and I was so excited to move on to the next step after participating in the job shadow. Although the first week of training was quite stressful, the amount of help and guidance was reassuring. After 4 long weeks of training, I was confident that I could start managing cases on my own. It was encouraging to know that DVMs and Lead Technicians were always available for guidance, math/plan checks and reassurance.

SafetyCall has offered a tremendous amount of growth and opportunity. I have always been a knowledge and math-based person, so this position has suited me well. Now, I am a part of the job shadow team and assist with editing pet owner blogs for our website and social media. I’ve been able to present a case during our biannual Morbidity and Mortality Rounds. I am beyond grateful for knowledge I have developed in toxicology that I know would not be possible in a clinic.

Surprisingly, it is rare that I miss the hands-on work from the clinic setting. As most people know, horses are very therapeutic, and I do miss being in their presence. However, this position has allowed me more freedom to be able to travel to our family farm to  help with the horses. I love the comfort of working from home and having the ability to decorate my office space for different seasons. It’s always nice to get a scheduled break and lunch, get out on time, not have lingering work for the next day and be appreciated by coworkers and clients! I didn’t find it hard to adjust to triaging patients over the phone and being at a desk due to my experience at BluePearl as a CSR and Care Coordinator. The biggest adjustment for me was to understand that I was still having a direct impact on the lives of animals despite not being in the clinic to treat them.

SafetyCall has a remarkable culture that encourages engagement from monthly activities to seasonal celebrations. I have been fortunate enough to attend a Winter Party and meet many of my coworkers in person. I truly feel connected to the exceptional group of knowledgeable technicians and doctors here at SafetyCall and look forward to continued growth in the company.