About Vint Virga

Vint Virga with Molly, a Barbary sheep. (Credit Robin Schwartz for The New York Times)

For over thirty years, Dr. Virga has been a distinguished practitioner and leader in veterinary medicine, recognized for his insights into our relationships with animals. His expertise spans the animal kingdom encompassing all wild species from polar bears and leopards to gorillas and giraffes. As a veterinarian specialized in wild animal behavior, Dr. Virga works internationally as an advisor on wildlife conservation and welfare for nature preserves and refuges; zoological parks and gardens; animal stewardship foundations; and governmental agencies. He teaches as an invited lecturer at leading colleges and universities as well as animal, conservational, and environmental symposia. Outside of clinical practice, he has served as an advisor to leading corporations and foundations; a veterinary liaison to the U.S. Congress; a climate leader with The Climate Reality Corps; and an expert on wildlife welfare and conservation legal issues. He has been profiled in The New York Times and featured on NPR Fresh Air, ABC World News, National Geographic Explorer, and PBS Nature. Across the different media, he portrays from his experience a rare awareness and compassion toward humans as well as animals.

Dr. Virga’s first book, The Soul of All Living Creatures is a winner of the Silver Nautilus Award. As a writer, he posts a blog for Psychology Today and is an invited contributor to literary journals and consumer magazines. In recognition of his writing, he has been awarded three MacDowell Fellowships, a Brown Foundation Fellowship, a Hawthornden Fellowship, as well as literary residencies at The MacDowell Colony, Maison Dora Maar, Ucross Foundation, Yaddo, The Bloedel Reserve, Willapa Bay AiR, Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, and The Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences. From his intimate work with endangered species, he brings to readers and audiences a wholly unique viewpoint on our relationship with other species and our shared future on this planet.

Dr. Virga received his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from the University of California, Davis and completed his clinical residency in behavioral medicine at Cornell University. He is board-certified in veterinary behavior; a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists; a professional fellow of the American Association of Zoological Veterinarians; and a member of the American Association of Wildlife Veterinarians, Animal Behavior Management Alliance, and International Society of Applied Ethology.