Dignified Pet Services presents 'People in the Neighborhood'
Dr. Shawn Thomas, Emergency Veterinarian, family man, athlete and adventurer.
Spot readers first met Dr. Shawn Thomas in January 2011 as he was opening and welcoming new patients to the Tanasbourne Veterinary Emergency Clinic. Today the clinic is thriving, serving pets and their families in the western metro area. Let’s catch up now with Dr. Thomas — Mr. Mom by day, ER vet by night.
Mr. Mom? You betcha. Emergency vets work evenings and weekends, so Shawn takes the helm at home during the day —maintaining order of his family of wife and two children, two English Bulldogs, one Dalmatian and three cats. His wife, Christina Fera-Thomas, works during the day, and needs little oversight herself. No strangers to managing marriage and household, Shawn and Christina have been together for 21 years, married for 11. High school sweethearts, Shawn was a high school freshman and Christina a worldly sophomore. The potential stigma of the age difference was alleviated, Shawn says modestly, because “I was a very good catch…”
Thomas still sports the physique and energy befitting a 1996 Rogue River High School State Wrestling champion. Deemed “Most Valuable Athlete” in high school, his sporting, adventurous nature popped us as he mused over his 2016 20th high school reunion, to which he says he won’t mind traveling to by helicopter.
While awaiting the reunion and the possible opportunity to play with big boy toys, Shawn will make do — this guy loves toys. This apparent boy at heart is evidenced at a glance in the clinic, where one room — his office — could double as a stock room at Toys R Us. Model cars line the shelves, and the piece d’ resistance? The facing wall, decked out with an impressive collage of colorful comic book heroes. “Daddy, read us a story” must unleash fun times in the Thomas household.
One of Shawn’s favorite “toys” is one given to him by co-workers — a model of his own Toyota 2010 FJ Cruiser. Sporting the same colors and decals as Shawn’s actual car, he confesses that the model has been seen whizzing around the parking lot on more than one slow night in the emergency room. In fact, so far, the model may have seen more action than the road vehicle. For all its glamour and ability, it hasn’t even been four-wheeling yet. There are, after all, only so many hours in a day in the life of a dad, husband and emergency vet.
You’d be right on the money if you guessed this man, who loves toys, kids and pets is crazy about Christmas. Asking for a favorite holiday memory for this Southern Oregon farm boy who always knew he’d be a vet, he said:
“They’re all good — all my memories of the holidays are good. I can’t pick one. I’m that lucky of a guy.”
Talk of toys is quickly laid aside as the evening’s first patient arrives and the doctor turns his full attention to the animal and its family.
Last note: In addition to toys, Shawn is no slouch when it comes to shoes; he claims ownership of upwards of 20 pair, many if not most being athletic. Apparently he feels “a shoe is just a shoe without the appropriate socks,” and clearly he’s got an eye for color.
About our Sponsor
Dignified Pet Services has served the Portland-area community for 13 years. In addition to their core business of cremation and memorial services, Dignified co-sponsors the beloved annual Service of Remembrance, this year Dec. 9th at The Old Church in downtown Portland, as well as serving as wonderful supporters and friends of pets and those working in animal welfare. Proprietors Michael, Randy and Avani live in Sherwood.
Marty Davis is a Portland writer and event photographer. She live in North Portland where is she closely watched over by Shasta, a bossy Aussie Shepherd. She is herded on a daily basis.