“Oh, I’d rather see Dr Stillman.”

That was the response when they asked if I had a preference. A preference? Are you serious?! Sure. I knew there were other vets. I knew they existed. There were even other (very qualified) vets at Court Street. Umm. But no. We always, always had a preference. Because none of the others were Norm.

It was 2011. Lulu, our first pug, had died suddenly – three days later we adopted a pair of pugs, Wally & Baby. Though we didn’t blame the vet (we loved that vet, too), I needed something new. When I met Diane Osgood Stillman at a Nathaniel Morton Elementary School PTO/PTA meeting, I decided Court Street would be our new vet. We had no idea. This new vet? He gave me his cell, encouraged me to text if I had questions. I tried, over the next 12 years, to use that superpower sparingly.

When Norm told us he was leaving the practice, I think I shouted “Oh, no!!!” I was shocked. But honestly? I wasn’t. After 12 years, we are grateful to count Norm and Diane as friends. I cannot blame him – there are so many horizons, so many more adventures – it’s time for their next chapter….they’ve both earned this.

Norm, to say thank you seems woefully insufficient. Your patience, understanding, compassion and wisdom have helped us through some of our happiest and darkest days. It’s a very unique and special relationship – between pet owners and vets. These animals are our living, breathing hearts. It can’t be easy. You have taught us so much and made us better pet owners.

Kara Mallon

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