I don’t watch a lot of reality series, and they aren’t typically what I think of when I wrack my brain for things that would be fun to watch with my kids.
But a reality series about a vet caring for exotic animals? That actually sounds like a winner for my animal-loving kids. And if it could hold my interest too -- a win-win.
NatGeo WILD’s new reality series Dr. T, Lone Star Vet really does fit the bill for family-friendly fun, with a bit of education thrown in.
From Turkeys to Turtles
The pilot of Dr. T, Lone Star Vet (official site here) introduces us to Dr. Lauren Thielen and her staff at one of Texas’ biggest animal hospitals.
But Dr. T’s is not a typical veterinary clinic. Instead of cats, dogs, and bunnies, she’s treating cases like hedgehogs with teeth problems and exotic birds with neck abscesses.
The show features interviews, direct-to-camera explanations, and footage of actual procedures on the animals.
In the pilot, my favorite case was the diagnosing of an attacking turkey (he and his pen-mate were named Dwight and Jim, ala The Office). And my five-year-old was a fan of the turtle whose bowels were backed up.
The vet and her staff are caring and duly serious, but also more than able to crack a joke or look for the fun in situations as well.
It’s Clean and Wholesome (So Far!)
Not all reality series are necessarily at a kid-friendly level of clean, but this one had very little to object to in the pilot.
There was one use of the word “sexy” as a joke about a turkey strutting. And some very mild potty humor.
Beyond that, my only objection was that the vet and her staff refer to owners of the animals as the animals’ “mom” or “dad.”
I know not everyone has a problem with this, but it’s always particularly irked me when people casually compare owning animals to parenting kids by calling the owners a “mom” or “dad” to the pet. Fight me on it if you will, but it’s just not the same thing, no matter how much you might love your pet.
Premiering This Sunday
Dr. T, Lone Star Vet will premiere this Sunday, October 13, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
So tune in (or set your DVR, especially if you’ve got little kids who’d enjoy it) for some educational, unusual animal fun.
Image: National Geographic/Kenyon Henderson