It’s officially ON! Dr. Rene Carlson, AVMA past president and current president of the World Veterinary Association, recently trekked to the North Pole to perform veterinary exams on some very special patients: Santa’s reindeer.
Just like any animal traveling across state or country borders, Santa’s reindeer need to have health certificates and a clean bill of health. Given their rapid rate of travel around the globe and the number of stops they make, if any of Santa’s reindeer were carrying an infectious disease, we could have an outbreak of disastrous proportions! In addition, if any of the reindeer were not healthy enough to travel, it would put them at higher risk of illness if exposed to an ill animal, and they could become ill and also put the other reindeer at risk. In other words, keeping the reindeer healthy not only protects them, but also protects the other animals of the world. And let’s not forget the people – reindeer can carry some diseases, such as brucellosis and tuberculosis, which can also infect people.
Fortunately, all nine reindeer – including that famous red-nosed one – are perfect specimens of health, and were given full RTF (Ready To Fly) status. We’ve posted the official Certificate of Inspection, and there’s a short video of Dr. Carlson’s exam. We’ve also got more resources, including a press release, photos and a longer video from a previous visit, and answers to frequently asked questions about Santa’s reindeer.