By Suzy Wiesenhart

Dr. Joyce Gerardi, DVM, is so inspired by her niece’s efforts to cope with life’s challenges, she founded Kindred-Canines in Motion (KIM) to help bring mobile veterinary care to those needing the assistance. KIM is a current Finalist in the 2012 National Veterinary Inspiration in Action Contest. You can help KIM win up to $25,000 simply by voting for this project daily through December 10.

Cast your vote daily by email or text 22333 and enter HELPSERVICEDOGS. To vote and learn more about KIM visit

Gerardi’s niece Kim  broke her neck in 1997 and lives as a quadriplegic. Kim relies on her service dog daily to stay safe and active, but Dugan, a 10-year-old Labrador, suffers from diffuse multifocal arthritis and degenerative joint disease and is having difficulty working.

Dr. Gerardi’s KIM Program would provide a General Mobile Wellness Care Program and new technology of pain management therapy to people depending on their working canines.

The mission of the KIM Program is to provide assistance to: homebound elderly and their emotional support animals, hearing alert dogs serving the deaf and hard of hearing, guiding eyes for the blind and paws for heroes that help American veterans returning home from active duty.

She is campaigning to raise funds for the purchase of a 24 ft. Sprinter Veterinary vehicle. The Sprinter van is the most fuel-efficient vehicle to provide this inspiration in action.  She is participating with organizations servicing the Southeastern U.S. which certify, train and place these special animals with the appropriate disabled person.

Kindred-Canines In Motion (KIM) will use these funds to create the first mobile non-profit (501c3) veterinary clinic in the southeastern U.S. designed to meet the needs of Service/Assistance animals.

To learn more about this program and its needs, please contact Dr. Gerardi at


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Suzy Wiesenhart
Suzy is one of the Advertising Representatives for the Riverview area. She started with the Osprey as an advertising assistant in 2008 and has various positions since then. She is also on the Board of Directors of the Riverview Chamber of Commerce. She has lived in Bloomingdale with her husband, Tom for the last 22 years.