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Oxford Vet Loves His Work, Has No Plans To Retire

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OXFORD, N.C. — Many people see work as a way to retire as early as possible. But a veterinarian in Oxford lives for his work and loves what he does -- and has no plans to stop anytime soon.

"I could very well have been a medical doctor, and be rich, but the thing about it is I don't like people that well. The animals are better," said Dr. Jacob Levenson.

Actually, Levenson likes people just fine, just not as patients. He has not just been looking down the ears and throats of dogs and cats during his 50 years as a veterinarian. Treating cows used to be the biggest part of his business in Oxford.

"By the time I came here, we had about 55 grade-A dairies, but we're down to about five now. So that's a thing of the past, so to speak," he said.

Levenson has never lived in the past and does not spend much time in the future. He stays in the here-and-now, which is why he has never thought much of retiring.

At a time when most people dream of traveling and seeing the world, Levenson is content to stay at home and work.

"We've traveled a little bit," he said. "I don't care that much for traveling."

Levenson's wife, Betty, does not want him to retire.

"There would be no leisure," she said, pointing to a wall of magazines. "All of these journals that you see up (there), that's what he does at home. He reads journals and keeps up with the new stuff, which I think is really admirable."

Levenson wants to work as long as he can. "(I'm not really interested in retirement). I'm going for another 50 (years)."

His patient's owners keep coming back, and so will Dr. Levenson, as long as he can be of help.

"He does love his work," Mrs. Levenson said. "There's no two ways about that."


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