OTTUMWA — There’s a man with 13 dogs, two rabbits, a hedgehog and two aviaries who recently moved back to Ottumwa.
This isn’t just anybody, but long time veterinarian Dr. Rudd Nelson.
Nelson grew up in De Soto, Iowa and got his degree in veterinary medicine from Mississippi State in 1999. He wanted to be a veterinarian because he grew up with a love for animals. “Growing up in Iowa, it was a way of life,” Nelson said, “There’s a picture of me being caught delivering kittens, since then it was expected I’d become a veterinarian.”
Since 2000, Nelson has worked in different clinics in America, including Ottumwa, before he and his wife opened their own clinic in Ft Lauderdale, Florida. Eventually, Nelson and his wife wanted to settle back into Ottumwa because he wanted to give his children the benefits of a relaxed lifestyle and a Midwest public education.
“I wanted them to have a different education and learn about work ethics,” he said, “I still have family in Iowa. We had a thriving business we were blessed with, but wanted to move on.”
Nelson’s reason for “moving on” was not just due to giving their children opportunities, but also because he wanted to help bring diversity to Pipestone Veterinary Services of Ottumwa. “I want to bring new technicians to help with surgeries and make the place grow in surgeries. I am working directly with the directors of doctors to bring about those changes. I want to help strength companionship not just in Ottumwa, but other facilities.”
Nelson also mentioned positive changes in working with Pipestone. “There are some adjustments coming from fast paced clinics. Here there’s down to earth people and small town mentality. “I’m not in a position where I’m seeing 10 appointments each hour, rather there’s two or three.”
Nelson believed these positive changes will apply to his goals he has for Pipestone.
“I’d love to be the director of multiple animal hospitals,” he said, “I love rescuing animals and teaching. I want to help people who want to start their own practices. There’s a lot of excitement ahead, short and long.”