When Dr. Stacie Seymour, DVM, came on as staff veterinarian at MSB-Shakopee, she brought with her the hands-on, applied learning philosophy she acquired through Ridgewater College and the University of Minnesota. The idea of a spay/neuter clinic occurred out of necessity, since there was one quarter here at MSB-Shakopee when surgery and anesthesia classes were not offered.
Lindsay Reddeman, another VT instructor at the time, said “Why don’t we just do a spay/neuter clinic?” According to Stacie, this is what got the ball rolling.
Over the years a working relationship with Carver-Scott Humane Society and Underdog Rescue has been formed, mostly due to location and proximity. This quarter the largest number of animals were brought to campus for free services during the Fabulous Spay-Neuter Clinic. The dogs and cats were transported in pet carriers by their foster people (36 dogs and cats to be exact) from Carver-Scott Humane Society (http://www.carverscotths.org/) and Underdog Rescue, (http://www.underdogrescuemn.com/) for the excellent care and skill provided by MSB-Shakopee’s very generous Veterinary Technology (VT) community.
“We always request younger, healthier animals to hopefully avoid medical issues, ” said Dr. Seymour. “If any animal has cardiac issues, we do not do surgery.”
Four MSB-Shakopee, one Globe University-Woodbury, one MSB-Lakeville, and one MSB-Plymouth instructor came to volunteer; Three MSB-Shakopee VT grads, 20 MSB-Shakopee students, three community veterinarians and four VT’s from the community dedicated 272 hours to spay and neuter these deserving animals.
“The students can never have too much experience. It is all about getting hands-on, feet wet, and applying what they are learning,” said Dr. Seymour. “To see a students’ face the first time they give an injection is priceless.”
Student Sandy Snyder agrees, ” Every time I do one of these clinics I learn something. It is an ongoing process. You work on your skills and your skills get better. Helping the community is something I love. If I could spay and neuter every cat that needs it, I would! That is a hope of mine.”
How many unwanted litters were avoided? There’s no saying. Dogs and cats are prolific breeders. How much money did MSB-Shakopee VT team save the non-profit animal rescue organizations? $3000, at the minimum. The sutures and pharmaceuticals are the biggest expenses. Volunteering time and skill is a huge factor in this event being a success.
“Everyone was completely exhausted at the end of the day,” said Dr. Seymour. “I am thankful for the volunteer doctors and vet techs who gave their time. I couldn’t do it without them.”
When asked if she would recommend participating in this event again, Dr. Seymour said, “Of course. It is tradition now!”