I’m Leslie Guttman, author of Equine ER: Stories from a Year in the Life of an Equine Veterinary Hospital, and I’m here at the World Equestrian Games. Many competitors juggle multiple lives to be able to compete. I caught up with Todd Griffiths, an equine veterinarian on the U.S. vaulting team. Here’s an excerpt of our conversation.

Q. You’re a vaulting vet. Where do you work and how do you balance your vet life and vaulting?

I work in a mixed animal practice in Southern Alberta, Canada. I do dogs, cats, cattle, and horses.

The vet part always takes precedence if I’m here (and not traveling for vaulting).  For example, the other night I was supposed to go to vaulting practice, but I got a cut horse, so practice got cancelled that night. The other vet here covers for me when I’m gone, and he and the office staff are very supportive.

I was in college when I started vaulting, so ever since then I’ve always tried to be really efficient with what I do. I also coach gymnastics. That helps me stay in shape. Being a large animal vet, I also stay very active, and that helps me stay fit. 

Vaulting vet Todd Griffiths. (Photo: Alex Thomas.)

Q. What appeals to you about the sport in general?

I was a gymnast growing u