As a dedicated veterinary professional, it should come as no surprise that Deborah Y. Strauss has a great love and respect of animals. She runs a vaccination and wellness clinic in Marion, Iowa, where she works to provide high-quality care for animals at affordable prices. Growing up, Deborah has always had a unique bond with animals, so the field of veterinary medicine was all too natural. One of Deborah’s favorite animals are horses, and her passion for these beautiful and unique animals goes far back. Little girls tend to be horse-crazy, and a young Deborah Y. Strauss was no exception to this. When she was 11, Deborah’s mother got her her first horse, which turned into an endless stream of horse shows and horse competitions over the course of her teenage years.
Even as Deborah Y. Strauss has gotten older, her passion for these animals has hardly abated, and she currently owns four disabled horses – Prince, Lucky, Flicka and Rose – who she has cared for and loved for many years, and continues to do so. Prince is blind in one eye, from the result of a traumatic injury suffered at a very young age. Lucky suffers from Equine Recurrent Uveitis (ERU), an unfortunately common ophthalmic disease among Appaloosas. He is completely blind in one eye, and has about 50% vision in the other eye. To care for Lucky, Deborah medicates his eyes every day, and has been able to prevent him from completely losing his vision. Flicka is a small mustang who, when just two years old, took a nasty fall that led to permanent damage to one of her knees, which in turn meant that she couldn’t be ridden.
The fourth and final horse, Rose, is a paint horse who has completely normal vision and no physical injuries. Her problem is that she suffered from severe malnutrition and was 400 lbs underweight and pregnant. She was just about to be shipped to a slaughterhouse, but she was saved at the last moment when somebody decided to take her because they wanted the foal. Deborah ran across Rose when he was once again about to be shipped off to slaughter, and felt sorry for her and took her. Today, Rose lives happily with Deborah’s other three horses. In addition, Deborah owns a miniature donkey named Sheridan, who hangs around with the horses. While these aren’t horses that you can ride, Deborah loves them, and gets a great deal of fulfillment from just taking care of them so that they can live out their lives in happiness.
As a veterinary professional, one of Deborah Y. Strauss’s specialties is horses, particularly equine ophthalmology. This is a field she first became interested in while taking care of Lucky’s ERU. This affliction is one of the leading causes of blindness in horses, although with proper care it can be properly managed. Apart from ERU, horses can suffer from many other diseases of and traumatic injuries to the eye. They’re also more susceptible to various fungal and bacterial infections of the eye, due to the environments in which they live. Due to how dependent horses are on their eyes, any sort of eye infection disorder or trauma in a horse is a major medical emergency, making the work of Deborah Y. Strauss that much more important. Deborah enjoys working on the equine eye so much because many times a horse’s vision can be preserved and saved with proper work and care, and seeing the final result is extremely rewarding.