A new relationship with animals, nature and each other.

The Country Vet

For the weekend: A rescued stallion who’s all hormones … a pit bull who literally ate the homework … a pheasant with a broken leg … a cow struggling to give birth … a barn cat with an infected leg … and a tornado coming through.


Dr. Jan Pol is back on Nat Geo Wild , starting Saturday evening. He’s a genuine old-fashioned country vet, whose only interest is making the animals better. Whether they’re the dogs and cats who come to his clinic or the animals on the farms that stretch out across rural Michigan, the good doctor has only one concern: make them better.

For the people who call on Dr. Pol, their animals are their livelihood – especially the cows. So you know that months from now they’re going to end up on a feed lot. And when a pheasant is brought in with a broken leg, and her person is cradling her in his arms, you know what it means when he explains that he breeds pheasants for the hunting season.

You might be put off by this. Strangely, perhaps, when I watched the screener, I wasn’t. Maybe that’s because there’s something honest and real about it all. An old-school country vet, old-fashioned family farms, and down-to-earth people who at least have some respect for the animals who provide them with their living. This is not the world of factory farms, canned hunts and white-coated people in weird laboratories.

And that goes, most of all, for the doc. He sure has a way with all the animals. How else would he get a sick, frightened horse to let him run a tube up her nose and down her esophagus so he can relieve the blockage that’s stopping her from eating or drinking?

And sure, Dr. Pol is all matter-of-fact about it. (As soon as she’s OK and taking a drink, he’s back in the car and off to the next patient at the next farm.) But there’s something quite touching about the deep connection he so obviously has with all of them: the animals, the farmers, and the clinic staff – which includes his own family.

Most of all, perhaps, you’re just glad he’s there.

Here’s a clip of the rescued stallion who’s all hormones and needs to be neutered if his new person is going to be able to keep him. It’s spay/neuter in spades!

New season, Saturday evenings at 10 ET/PT on Nat Geo Wild.