By Mr. Meowgy
For some time now, I have been telling these humans, “You must write blog posts about the Vet2Pet team. People want to know who are the master ninjas at the Vet2Pet dojo.”
Humans rarely listen to us cats, even though we are so clearly full of wisdom. Sigh. Sometimes it is most exhausting.
It took a while, much too long for my liking, but I finally got these sometimes misguided humans to see it my way. Well, kind of. The Vet2Pet team is most modest, and is too busy helping veterinary practices to write about themselves. I said, “Drink some coffee. Put ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ on repeat. Handle it.”
So, indeed, they handled it. Guess who they put in charge of this most important task? Your master ninja, Mr. Meowgy! I am most honored to do it, since I am clearly the only hard-working cat around here, and no doubt the most qualified. Your master is most humble and does not want to brag, but cats are most excellent at writing. And, most skillful at interviewing. Certainly far superior to any dog out there. And, let us face it, as a ninja master, I am most excellent at everything.
So, for my first official assignment, I interviewed Vet2Pet’s VP of Sales, Antonio Parenti. I used my finely honed interrogation skills to pry out his secrets, and here’s what I discovered.
An inside look at Vet2Pet’s Antonio Parenti
Mr. Meowgy (MM): Good things come to those who work hard and never give up. Vet2Pet is clearly a most remarkable place to be. Please reveal how you found yourself here.
Antonio Parenti (AP): I’ve always worked in healthcare in some shape or form. I worked in medical devices, I worked in human pharmaceuticals for years, and I also worked in the fitness industry. I have experience with platforms similar to Vet2Pet, although nowhere near as powerful! I’ve been a sales leader for almost 15 years now. I’ve always kind of been in a leadership role—even in the military, I was a platoon sergeant at a very young age, so I’ve always had that ability to rally people. And I’ve done that in my career, and it’s been really fulfilling helping people and organizations reach their full potential by getting everyone on the same page and creating a culture of winning and success. I worked for Vetstreet, which was acquired by Henry Schein. I worked my way up there until I was leading all technology sales for Henry Schein. I did that for years, but after the Covetrus reverse merger, things got messy. So I decided to accept a position in the fitness industry, but I always knew I’d come back to the veterinary industry when the right opportunity came along. Vet2Pet was the perfect fit, so here I am.
MM: I always say that people with goals succeed because they know where they are going. My most esteemed colleague, you have not always known where you were going, though… Tell me about your very first job.
AP: Oh, you’ll love this, Mr. Meowgy. I worked at an Italian bakery in New Jersey on the weekends from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m when I was 15. I got paid under the table, and the owner’s name was Vinny. The guy carried a pistol in his baking pants. He wasn’t nice—he would yell and yell and yell, and I was just half asleep trying to make bread. We lived in an all-Italian neighborhood with a lot of craftsmen. So he was right off the boat and he hated the way I did everything.
MM: The journey to enlightenment can consist of many paths…
AP: Yeah, you’re so right Mr. Meowgy.
MM: You’ve come a long way from the young grasshopper you once were. What makes you most excited about Vet2Pet? No one here carries a pistol…or wears baking pants.
AP: That’s good! I think knowing the industry, and specifically, the technology in the industry, makes me really excited. At the veterinary industry jobs I’ve had in the past, the technology tools weren’t really cohesive. The teams would create all these little pieces that were add-ons to the technology, but they wouldn’t be streamlined. And everyone was OK with just selling more customers on these little pieces of software. No one’s thinking about the big picture. But at Vet2Pet, we can have one solution that works across the whole practice. There’s not a bunch of different logins. These are not different pieces. Vet2Pet’s platform, while it’s constantly being improved and added to, each addition is part of the big picture and works cohesively with the rest of the platform. When I met Stacee [Santi] in 2019 and she relayed her vision and talked about really advancing the technology platform and having a solution that’s continuously being updated to make life easier for veterinary teams, I was impressed. She really cares about the profession, and she wants people to have the tools they need to be successful. I’ve never met anyone in this industry that I can say believes that 100% of the time. And, 100% of her thoughts and power go into making the profession a better place with top-notch tools—like Vet2Pet.
MM: Yes, yes… Stacee is a most fine human. She would be infinitely better if she were a cat, or if she were a master ninja like me, but I digress. So, let us stop talking shop for a bit. Tell me about your family.
AP: I’m married—my wife owns a boutique veterinary recruiting firm. We have three kids: a 12-year-old son, an 11-year-old daughter, and a 6-year-old daughter.
MM: A fine litter. What is something you want to do that you have not yet done?
AP: Drive across the country in an RV. Visit every state.
MM: With or without your most fine offspring?
AP: That’s a great question. I think with kids it would be more fun, but it would be a lot more challenging for various reasons.
MM: If kale can replace a potato chip, then you, my friend, can do anything.
MM: What are you most proud of?
AP: I’m most proud of what I’ve accomplished in terms of my family and building a successful career—I have the best of both worlds. There are a lot of people who’ve experienced professional success, but they often have sacrificed and missed out on a lot to get there. So far, I’ve been able to be there as a dad and burn the candle at both ends to also achieve success in my career. There are days when you’re burned out from being on Zoom calls all day and then your kids are like, ‘Let’s play a game!’ And it’s a complicated game, and I’m like, ‘Oh, gosh, my brain’s fried, but let’s do it.’ It’s not easy, but I feel like I’ve always been true to my career and to my family, which is important.
MM: You are a most devoted ninja to all aspects of your life. The real question though, is who cleans the kitty litter?
AP: Well, we don’t have a cat. We have a dog named Sydney.
MM: You are no longer allowed in my inner circle, you dirty dog lover! Well, let us try to move on from here. If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be—other than to get a cat?
AP: I’d be taller.
MM: How tall are you?
MM: How tall would you want to be?
AP: 6’5’’. Might as well go big, right?
MM: The Black-Eyed Peas say, ‘Keep on reaching for your dreams, ’cause it ain’t as crazy as it seems.’
AP: Well, that dream might be a little crazy.
MM: OK. I shall ask you quick questions, and you must respond immediately.
AP: Got it.
MM: Biggest vice?
AP: Chewing gum.
MM: Favorite food?
MM: Favorite hobby?
AP: Working out.
MM: Not napping? Most odd! OK, favorite kind of music?
AP: Anything but country.
MM: Ocean or mountains?
MM: Bar soap or body wash?
AP: Body wash.
MM: Morning or night?
AP: Morning. I’m an extreme morning person.
MM: At what time do you wake up in the morning?
AP: 4 a.m. every day, if not earlier.
MM: You are an unnatural creature, He-Who-Does-Not-Nap. You get up that early to work out?
MM: You are a most impressive ninja candidate to display such dedication. Do you ever take a day off from working out?
AP: I haven’t taken a day off in 15 years. I’m obsessed. I have a Garmin watch and I track everything from sleep to steps to calories burned to miles I’ve run…everything. And I constantly look at it. I have to hit a certain goal for every category every day. I’ll go pace around my house to meet a goal if I have to.
MM: So my dear grasshopper, do you do all that training in order to eat whatever you want?
AP: I eat the same thing every day. I’m not really a big food person. I just eat to be able to perform.
MM: One of my favorite sayings is: Do not reward yourself with food. You are not a dog. I, too, eat the same thing every day, my friend! So, tell our most esteemed readers, what do you eat?
AP: I have a protein shake and a carb supplement right after my workout—usually at 6 a.m. or so. An hour later, I’ll have breakfast, which is ground turkey, egg whites, and some type of white carb, like rice or potatoes, to refuel the body. Then, usually around 10 a.m., I’ll have my second meal, which is eight ounces of chicken, eight ounces of white or sweet potato and broccoli. Then, I’ll have my third meal later in the afternoon. It’s six ounces of sweet or white potatoes, eight ounces of chicken, and broccoli. And then for my last meal, I’ll have beef and broccoli. And that’s it. Same every day.
MM: Indeed! Mr. Antonio, I must share my motto with your good self: ‘Good nutrition is essential to one’s training, but a sugar rush is a ninja’s secret.’ Use this as a guide to achieve your future master ninja status.
AP: Yeah, no sugar rushes here…
MM: Speaking of mottos, what is yours?
AP: If you chase your dreams long enough, you will eventually catch them.
MM: Or at least you will get in the best physical condition trying! Try you must! Much gratitude for giving us an inside look at your life, Mr. Antonio! I do recommend that you get a cat, add some sugar to your diet, and get more sleep. You will then achieve honorary master ninja status!
Visit the Vet2Pet team page to learn more about Antonio and the rest of the team. I trust you will check out my future interviews of Vet2Pet team members!
“Like a moth to the flame, I have lured you in with my infinite wisdom.” — Mr. Meowgy
Mr. Meowgy, Master App Ninja
Abandoned by his family, Mr. Meowgy was discovered in a filthy trash can by a kind-hearted veterinary technician. Taking pity on this poor orphan kitten, the vet tech bottle fed and raised Mr. Meowgy into becoming the most excellent master ninja he is today. Mr. Meowgy credits his determination, savvy street smarts, and desire to make humans better to his humble beginnings. He is a most talented ninja cat, who enjoys teaching humans how to use technology, lapping up warm milk, kneading bread, and catching the little red dot.