'Darlin' I Love Ya, But Give Me Park Avenue!'
From the green acres, cows, horses, and rattlesnakes of small town West Texas, to the cats and dogs (and rattlesnakes) of Beverly Hills, Veterinarian Jason C. Rattan feels at home either place caring for pets.
Born in 1968, Dr. Jason C. Rattan was raised in the small West Texas town of Cisco. Cisco is now one of the many ghost towns scattered throughout Middle America. Its hey day was the twenties and thirties when people came to the region for oil speculation. Around this time Cisco boasted the world's largest concrete-bottomed swimming pool, its own zoo, and Hilton's first hotel. Today, Cisco's three thousand citizens, cinched by the Bible belt, are bereft of even a McDonalds. 'Their street lights have darkened,' Rattan notes not too wistfully.
A few of Cisco's residents have made their mark as artists. Country singer Don Williams and pop singer Dash Crofts of Seals and Crofts are both from Cisco. Also, Cleatus Rattan (Dr. Rattan's father) of Cisco is the Poet Laureate of Texas, and his current book Take Your Time Coming Home has been nominated for a
'I really came here for love. My wife, Sandrine, is a native of Paris, but she came to this country and began her days as a new citizen in Los Angeles. She loves life here, and I love her, so here I am, and I really love what I do.'
After graduating high school in 1987, Dr. Rattan attended Texas Tech University where he was a 2-year letterman at quarterback for the Texas Tech Red Raiders during the 1989 and 1990 seasons. 'My four years as a student athlete were valuable years. I learned to endure tough tests, and I also learned that you can't win every battle, but you keep trying. Veterinarians have to try hard to diagnose illnesses their patients can't tell them about. Perseverance and keen observation are essential tools.'
With one year remaining on his football scholarship, Dr. Rattan accepted early entrance to the Texas A&M Veterinary School. He leaped at the chance to attend veterinary school and was graduated with his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in 1995. 'Vet School was a great experience. It's a shame that not everyone can have an educational experience like that. I'm still paying my student loan, but it was worth every penny, and I feel very fortunate even though I saw very little light of day for those four years.'
After graduating, Dr. Rattan practiced veterinary medicine in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area for 9 years. 'My first job was the most interesting and demanding. We were a 24 hour hospital that had clientele from the city and the country since we were on the beginning ranchland, Southwest edge of Ft. Worth. And, in the beginning I was the late night vet AND the house call vet. So, one night I would perform a C-section on a Pomeranian at 2:00 a.m. at the hospital, and the next night I would be called out to a farm to see a Llama who had cut his ankle, or a horse that had run through a barbed-wire fence during a thunderstorm, or a pot-bellied pig who had eaten too many Fritos.'
Dr. Rattan's experiences with a variety of species of animals have sharpened his diagnostic and surgical skills when working with dogs and cats. 'I hate to use cliche's but working with many different species of animals broadens my perspective and helps me think outside the box.' Animals he has diagnosed and treated include bears, wolves, a serval cat, a mountain lion, snakes (including boas, pythons and rattlesnakes), rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, squirrels, sugar gliders, chinchillas, hedgehogs, an eagle, an owl, many species of pet birds, skunks, raccoons, possums, an alligator, turtles and tortoises, horses, mules, donkeys, cows, a buffalo, sheep, goats, llamas, emus, ostriches, pigs, iguanas, monitors, and salamanders.
'The cool weather and the cool, diverse cultures of LA have a strong hold on me now. LA is home. Of course, it is not Cisco,' he smiles, and then laughs.
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Dr. Jason C. Rattan
471 S Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036-3122