Pets Receive Top-Notch Care at YSU Clinic | News, Sports, Jobs


YOUNGSTOWN — In a short time, Bella Spencer has gone from never having heard of Youngstown State University to being very grateful for how it has placed her on a career path that promises to be lasting. , long-lasting and extremely satisfying.

“I really appreciate this very much. It gives me a glimpse of what my real career will be after school,” said the YSU freshman.

Spencer, who lives in Eighty Four, Pa., and is a biology major and pre-vet, has previously joined the university’s Pre-Vet Society to become more adept at caring for animals, which fits well with her desire to be a veterinarian, she says.

Spencer and about 20 other members of the Pre-Vet Society had the opportunity to put their skills and knowledge to the test in the classroom, through their attendance at Saturday’s Marjorie Hartman Family Foundation Pet Clinic, set up in a large tent in a parking lot at North Walnut and Adams streets near campus.

The four-hour clinic was also partnered with Buster’s Brigade, an Austintown-based organization established in 2018 dedicated to providing financial and material assistance for the basic and emergency needs of cats and dogs in Mahoning County. and surrounding areas, Donna Sekman, one of the organization’s co-founders, noted. According to its website, these needs include medical treatment, food supplies, preventive care, and help in giving a pet a new home.

Six or seven local vets also attended Saturday’s clinic and offered free checkups for pets, as well as chargeable vaccinations for a variety of diseases including rabies, parvo, heartworm, de Carré, leptospirosis (a disease caused by a spiral-shaped bacteria) and kennel cough. Combo dog and cat plans were also available, Sekman explained.

Vaccinations ranged from $5 to $15. In addition, people have been able to have their pets microchipped, she said, adding that about 173 people have pre-registered for the clinic, which has treated more than 200 pets.

Sydney Weidler, a member of the Pre-Vet Society and YSU junior, who lives on campus, was also happy to help with the effort.

“I also worked in a clinic, so it’s something I like to do. I joined the pre-vet, so it solidified what I want to do,” said Weidler, who along with Spencer was busy preparing combination vaccines as well as vaccines for rabies and bordetella, a highly contagious upper respiratory problem in dogs and cats that’s nearly identical to kennel cough.

As the clinic began, a long line snaked its way up North Walnut as people brought their dogs and cats in for treatment. Among those queuing on the 75-degree sunny day were Kaitlyn Mason from Youngstown, who brought Remington, a 2-year-old lab mix, and 8-month-old Winnie, an Australian Shepherd.

“They are in perfect health” Mason said, explaining that she brought her two dogs to make sure they were up to date on their shots. “They are best friends and full of energy.”

Not far ahead of Mason in the line was Denise Metts, who brought in a small cage containing Archer Boo Boo, her 8 or 9-year-old black tabby cat, to receive her booster shots, a nail clipper and a microchip.

Metts, of Salem, said she heard about the clinic through her neighbor, Rhiana Kendall, who came with two cats she wanted vaccinated to prevent rabies.

Also in attendance was Tina Costarella of Hammondsville, a YSU graduate who started the Pre-Vet Society in 2018.

The club has about 60 members and this year four of the students were accepted into accredited veterinary schools, she said.

Costarella added that she hopes Pre-Vet Society students also enjoy some life lessons along the way.

“I hope students realize how important it is to give back to the community,” particularly through education, awareness efforts and the importance of preventive medicine and care, she said.



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