LIfe’s Unexpected Changes

“20 years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the one’s you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain

Sometimes in life, things come down your path that you weren’t looking for, but when they arrive, cannot be ignored. One of these exact situations presented itself to me this winter.

Anyone who has worked with me for any period of time knows my favorite part of my career is small animal surgery. The definition of surgery is the branch of medicine concerned with the treatment of injuries or disorders of the body by incision or manipulation, especially with instruments. The etymology of the word surgery comes from the Greek and Latin words meaning “hand work”. This is not to say surgeons enjoy the actual cutting into a loved-ones companion and putting them through the subsequent recovery, but rather the ability to address and correct certain illnesses and conditions that medicine alone cannot alleviate. The bond a doctor can make with a patient and client through a more involved procedure and recovery can be lifelong and extremely rewarding on our side of the fence. Even routine procedures such as spays, neuters, and declaws can better the health and life of the pet and keep them in a loving home longer.

As I have gotten older (that seems weird to admit, LOL), I’ve realized I have always seemed to gravitate toward activities and hobbies that have that same “hands-on” quality. I loved art and science classes all through school MUCH more than music and English (this blog may make that apparent). Pottery class in high school was probably my favorite class of all time. My hobbies all involve the same use-your-hands commonality. The adjustments needed on an remote-controlled car to make it handle better and race faster, building an remote-controlled airplane and piloting it through aerobatic maneuvers and then successfully landing it in one piece, and creating a piece of furniture from a pile of wooden boards that (hopefully) stands the test of time, all reflect the hands-on interests I’ve had.

All of these reflect underlying reasons in my enjoyment of surgery. I feel more comfortable removing a complicated intestinal foreign body than trying to make dosage adjustments on a sick diabetic patient. The latter involves having a solid grasp on MANY invisible complex physiologic parameters, while the former, however, depends heavily on manual dexterity as well as adhering to laws of anatomy and sterile technique.

The opportunity that has been offered to me involves the chance to pursue my favorite aspect of the veterinary profession in an increased capacity. After a long and at times difficult decision-making process, I have decided to accept this offer. While I am excited by this new area of professional growth, it does mean leaving the safe harbor of my Foster family. In the six years I’ve been fortunate enough to be on the Foster team, I’ve learned a great deal and have developed relationships I hope will last the rest of my career.

It is with both anticipation and ambivalence that I announce Tuesday, April 30 will be my last day with Foster Animal Hospital. The Foster team is stocked with some of the brightest, most talented, caring, and most devoted doctors, technicians, and staff that you will find anywhere around. It is the fact that I get to call these same people my friends which has made this decision so difficult. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of these last 6 years, it’s been a heck of a ride! It’s time to leave safe harbor for the uncharted possibilities of the future.


Seth Ueleke, DVM

Foster Animal Hospital

Concord, NC  28027

New Opportunities!


Dear Friends,

Foster Animal Hospital has been your trusted source for veterinary care for over 50 years! We are proud to serve this community to the best of our ability year after year, all the while, building relationships that last a lifetime!

The team at Foster Animal Hospital has recently received the opportunity to better serve our community with a revised schedule at both of our convenient locations. Effective March 25th, Foster Animal Hospital will be expanding its surgical schedule to include Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday of each week. No more limitations on available days for you to have your pet’s surgical procedure completed by the best veterinary team around!

Due to the changes in our surgical schedule at our main office, effective March 28th, Foster Animal Clinic at Parkway Commons will be closing on Thursdays. Foster Animal Clinic at Parkway Commons will now be open for business on Monday, Wednesday & Friday, effective the week of March 25th.

We would also like to inform our friends of a change to our Veterinary Staff in the near future. Dr. Seth Ueleke has received an unexpected opportunity to pursue a personal passion in the veterinary field. His decision to leave the Foster Animal Hospital team has come after great hesitation and contemplation on the matter. He has informed our team that this was not an easy decision but he must pursue his interests in the field. We are sad to see him go. Dr. Ueleke wants to ensure that all of his patients are well cared for and he will continue seeing patients through Tuesday, April 30th.

The team at Foster Animal Hospital views these changes as an opportunity to grow with our community’s current needs. We are dedicated to providing our friends and neighbors with exceptional veterinary care for years to come!

Thank you for your loyalty!
Doctors & Staff of Foster Animal Hospital