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February 10, 2010

Accomplished veterinary science professor offering Golden Tiger class


Having spent 38 years teaching at Auburn University’s Veterinary College, Dr. Steven Swaim moved backSwaim to his family farm near Geuda Springs in 2007. Although he is retired from practicing medicine, Dr. Swaim will be teaching a class in March on Basic Health Care for Pet, Working and Sporting Dogs as part of the Cowley College Golden Tigers program.

The class will be held on Wednesday’s in March from 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Dr. Swaim is an accomplished scientist in the field of small animal wound healing and reconstructive surgery. Referred to as a pioneer in veterinary plastic and reconstructive surgery, Dr. Swaim advanced the science of wound healing.

Dr. Swaim, who graduated from Kansas State University, prior to attending Auburn University Veterinary College for an advanced degree in surgery, has over 45 years of veterinary experience. Along with his time working at Auburn University, he also practiced veterinary medicine in Wichita, Denver, and the Army Veterinary Corps.

“It’s hard to drop it after working in that field for so many years,” Dr. Swaim said. “The class will teach basic health care. I am not going to try to make a veterinarian out of you, I will just offer first aid tips and advice on how to care for animals.”

He practiced the art of reconstructive surgery on badly injured dogs and cats, while training the next generation of veterinary surgeons at Auburn University.

Dr. Swaim authored the first textbook on the topic of plastic and reconstructive surgery in veterinary medicine entitled, “Surgery of Traumatized Skin: Management of Reconstruction in the Dog and Cat”, published by W.B. Saunders in 1980. 

In 1984, he started contributing chapters and papers on techniques for plastic and reconstructive surgery to various textbooks and journals on small animal surgery.

In 1990, he coauthored with his colleague, Dr. Ralph Henderson, the definitive text on “Small Animal Wound Management” which is now in its second edition and recognized world wide as the most authoritative monograph on this topic in veterinary medicine.

In 1999, his excellence in teaching was recognized by the Auburn Alumni Association with the Undergraduate Teaching Excellence Award.  He was also named the recipient of the SmithKline Beechan Research Excellence Award, named Veterinarian of the Year by the American Animal Hospital Association and received the American College of Veterinary Surgeons Merit Award in 2003.

He is currently writing a book along with Dr. Walter Renberg, associate professor, small animal surgery, at Kansas State University.

The Cowley College Golden Tigers program is offered to community members who are 50 years of age or over.