Meet Tatum: Abilene's Future K9 Officer

Tatum is a veterinary technician at Abilene Veterinary Clinic.

I was born and raised right here in Abilene, Texas. Ever since I was a little girl, I knew I wanted to work with animals. As a kid, I got involved with the National FFA Organization which gave me the opportunity to work with pigs, goats, and steer. My dad was also an FFA member when he was in high school, so it’s become somewhat of a family tradition. I’m looking forward to having my 5-year-old son, JJ, start soon too.

Veterinary technician, Tatum Howe, with her husband and their childrenI’ve been working at Abilene Veterinary Clinic since 2016. I started out as a kennel tech but I’m now cross trained in pretty much everything there is to know here. I’ve worked in surgery and reception and I sometimes accompany the doctors to wellness exams and help out my hospital manager, Tilden, by ordering supplies.

My favorite part of working in this field is being able to build genuine connections with clients, watching puppies grow up, and seeing sick pets get better. I’m constantly learning new things and that’s what keeps me motivated. If I had to give one piece of advice to someone looking to work in the veterinary field, it’d be never give up, even if the going gets tough. It’ll all be worth it in the end. I hope to become a K9 officer someday and I’m sure I’ll be living out that advice during training.

At home, I have two cats, Scar and Charlie, and a dog named Diesel. Diesel is an older boy, so he’s pretty laid back. He usually sits around while the other two play. I rescued him from a shelter when he was a puppy. Scar, I took home from work as a kitten, and Charlie just showed up at my house one day. You know how that goes...

As an aside, while I don’t own a pet pig, I adore them because their personalities are pretty similar to those of dogs. They greet you when you walk up to their pen and, just like dogs, they love treats. They’re particularly fond of Oreos, marshmallows, and vanilla wafers. The more you know!

When I’m not at work, I love spending time with my husband, Jonathan, and our two children, Bella and JJ. We’re an outdoorsy bunch and you can find us fishing, swimming, and having cookouts whenever we have time - if it’s an outdoors activity, we’re there. We also enjoy heading over to the lake on the weekends. It’s a great place to go to decompress and relax.