Dr. Matt Carriker first found an internet following by blowing things up. His channel, "Demolition Ranch," had a simple premise. He would go out on his Texas property with his favorite gun(s), a GoPro, and maybe a friend or two, film it and put it on the internet. With over 1.3 million subscribers, "Demolition Ranch" has become one of the most popular firearms channels on YouTube.
It’s ironic that Dr. Matt enjoys spending his free time destroying things, with everything from tomahawks to fireworks and guns (even a Barret .50 cal), when his day job consists of healing and rescuing sick, abandoned animals. After graduating from Texas A&M Veterinary School in 2012, Dr. Matt now runs a small veterinary practice outside San Antonio, Texas.
In 2014, Dr. Matt was called to the scene of a stray dog who had been hit by a car. He had been asked to euthanize the injured dog, but after examining her, Dr. Matt was inspired not to give up. Using his iPhone camera, he began filming her medical care and eventual recovery. With the rescue and recovery of the sweet black Labrador retriever Janie, the "Vet Ranch" YouTube channel was born.
Vet Ranch, Inc is a non-profit animal rescue organization dedicated to rescuing homeless animals and finding them forever homes, and then sharing their stories through YouTube. Starting with Dr. Matt, the "Vet Ranch" team has added several other vets from small practices across Texas. These include Dr. Karri, Dr. Wendy, and Dr. Dave. The channel has grown tremendously over the past two years, with all revenue and donations going to the treatment of rescues.
Watching a Vet Ranch video is an emotional roller coaster. Take the recent story of Rem. Removed from animal control just hours before euthanasia, the young pup was suffering from demodectic mange, severe staph infection, malnutrition, and temporary blindness. From his body language to the somber look in his eyes, your heart breaks for Rem, who has clearly had a short and rough life so far.
Thanks to a growing subscriber base and viewer donations, Dr. Matt was able to treat Rem and transform him to the happy, healthy, and adoptable sweet dog he is today. The final transformation is the ultimate emotional payout. For those of us that maybe dreamed of being a vet at one time or another, the behind the scenes look at surgery and treatment gives a new perspective on animal medicine and pet rescue organizations.
As Dr. Matt says almost every video, we are coming along for the ride with every "Vet Ranch" patient. What makes "Vet Ranch" different is not just the heartwarming storytelling, but the connection to the patients and the doctors the viewers feel every video.
So thank you, Dr. Matt, for making young pups like Rem smile for the first time in their lives. Thank you, Dr. Karri ,for not giving up on broken and fractured hounds like Primrose. Thank you, Dr. Wendy and Dr. Dave, for giving animals like Peppa and Lucy their second chance to find a forever home.
With 133 rescue videos and almost 450,000 subscribers, "Vet Ranch" is living out their mission: providing medical treatment to homeless and abandoned animals that have no other advocate. So next time you have a moment to spare, check out "Vet Ranch" and any one of their amazing videos. That warm glow you see in a healthy, rescued animal’s eyes? That little tag wag and the hint of a smile? That’s love. And it’s a pretty incredible thing to see.