Get a glimpse inside the life of Dr. Dee Thornell. She is a modern-day medicine woman who travels across glaciers and mountains and endures sub-zero temperatures for the animals of the Last Frontier. She made it her life’s mission to care for the wild and domestic animals of America’s largest state – no matter what. With gold miners, truckers and off-the-gridders as some of her clients, she knows humans in Alaska rely on their animals for survival and companionship. As a result, Dr. Dee frequently navigates the toughest terrain and inclement weather in the most remote areas by plane, four wheelers or even a horse and carriage to care for them. Although extremely difficult – she’s experienced everything from frozen vaccines to frostbite during surgery, and she loves every second of it.
A quirky former Midwesterner, Dr. Dee left the lower 48 more than 25 years ago and never looked back. After starting her veterinary business out of a pick-up truck, she now owns and operates Animal House, the most sophisticated veterinary hospital in Fairbanks, Alaska. Animal House isn’t your typical animal hospital. On any given day, you’ll find Dr. Dee and her staff treating a variety of animals that rarely appear on most vets’ patient list – bald eagles, owls, chinchillas, beavers, iguanas, ox, moose and bears – that often requires her to leave the high-tech luxuries of her Fairbanks’ clinic and rely on the bare necessities in these remote villages.