There’s nothing like getting a new puppy to remind you how wonderful it is to have your very own bundle of energy to deal with. Though the slobbery kisses and the slumbering puppy in your lap may delight, the home strewn with toys, chewed-up shoes and the occasional puddle (or pile) of you-know-what… not so much.

Nonetheless, reliving the past through a new pup has an added benefit for this veterinarian: It makes it easier for her to empathize with owners who are going through the very same things. It also gives her an extra reason to hit the books as she re-explores all the nooks and crannies inherent to pediatric medicine.