Mourning the Loss of a Very Special Veterinarian

All of us at Animal Hospital of North Asheville are deeply saddened by the unexpected death of Dr. Sophia Yin, one of the world's most respected and important veterinary behaviorists. Dr. Yin was a pioneer in the field of fear-free/low stress handling of patients in veterinary hospitals and  shelters, and of force-free positive reinforcement training for pets. Animal Hospital of North Asheville was among the first to buy her book and use her training videos and materials. We treasure the knowledge she imparted to us and will continue to honor her every day as we strive to provide low stress care to our dear patients. As an example of how far we have carried her teachings, last year we gave out more than $10,000 worth of various types of treats to our patients to distract them from fear, make their visits positive and enjoyable, and gain their trust and cooperation. This commitment to low stress handling has benefited our patients as we've learned that anxiety and fear actually inhibit healing, and has benefited our staff as we have noted far fewer injuries among the staff in the years since we incorporated Dr. Yin's methods. We were extremely honored that Dr. Yin was in attendance last February as we received our national award as Practice of the Year. We will continue to hear Dr. Yin’s voice guiding us and always urging us to see our actions through the eyes of our patients. We mourn her passing and celebrate the life of this wonderful veterinarian who gave a voice to the voiceless animals and who had so much influence on those of us who love and care for animals. 

To learn more about Dr. Yin and her work, visit:


Having just lost my father, who was a mentor to many, I resonate with the loss of your teacher and mentor. I have always marveled at the way AHNA vets and staff seem to understand the needs of a stressed pet and somehow, magically, my previously-stressed pet and previously-stressed **me** walked out of the treatment room relaxed and even cheerful! Now that I know the original source of this "magic," I share your grief in losing such a wonderful colleague with a truly deep bond and understanding of the workings of the non-human heart and mind. May her soul have a safe journey.