Our Veterinary Affiliate

Elizabeth Hodgkins DVM, Esq.  

Dr. Elizabeth Hodgkins has been a veterinarian since 1977 when she graduated from the University of California School of Veterinary Medicine. Immediately after, she served an internship in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery at the prestigious Animal Medical Center in Manhattan, New York, followed by a residency in Veterinary Oncology at her alma mater, UC Davis.

Dr Hodgkins then began a career in small animal practice in Northern California with special interest in cancer medicine. She followed this practice experience with nearly a decade of work with several major pet food companies during which she developed her life-long interest in veterinary nutrition. This interest led not only to a sense that commercial pet foods were actually ill-suited to the needs of pet dogs and cats, but it also led to an interest in the law. 

Temporarily leaving her veterinary pursuits in order to attend law school full time at the University of Kansas in the 1990s, Dr Hodgkins became a member of the Kansas Bar and then spent several years combining her interests in veterinary medicine and law at Heska Corporation as part of its founding executives and IPO team, and then Veterinary Pet Insurance (now Nationwide Insurance). The attraction for practice veterinary medicine had never left her, however, so she traded corporate veterinary medicine to found and run her own feline specialty practice in Southern California.

From her private practice, Dr Hodgkins innovated several approaches to the management of important feline diseases, including feline diabetes, of special interest to her through experiences with her own cats. She was perhaps the first veterinarian to recognize the profound link between highly processed extruded dry cat foods and the development of diabetes in cats, which was quickly becoming an epidemic at the time as prevalence of dry kibble feeding to cats was rising.

Dr Hodgkins worked with Heska to apply for and receive a patent (she is sole patent-holder) on the first diabetes-specific diet formulation for cats which was used by a major pet food company to produce and market the first such diet.

Subsequently, Thomas Dunn Books/St Martin’s Press optioned and published her first book, Your Cat: Simple New Secrets to a Longer Stronger Life, followed by a co-authorship of Not Fit for a Dog!: The Truth About Manufactured Dog and Cat Food.

In all, Dr Hodgkins is patent holder or co-patent-holder on a number of patents relating to veterinary subjects and has authored or co-authored a dozen papers and reference book chapters on those subjects. She lives now in the Pacific Northwest with her very understanding husband and 4 cats, whose understanding of her hectic lifestyle is more sporadic. But then, that’s just how cats are...