After-hours pet emergency
clinic opens in Ocala
Hundreds of people from Ocala and the surrounding area turned out on the afternoon of June 30 for a sneak preview of the new after-hours University of Florida pet emergency clinic, which officially opened for business on July 2.
A private ribbon-cutting and celebration involving key stakeholders in the clinic was held earlier that morning. Participating in that event were UF veterinarians and staff who will be working at the clinic; representatives from a variety of veterinary practices in Ocala, who collaborated with UF in the effort; representatives from various Ocala governmental and civic organizations, including the mayor and ambassadors for the Chamber of Commerce; and other UF administrators, faculty and staff.
“All of us were so grateful for the warm welcome we received from Ocala and for the huge turnout at this event,” said the college’s dean, Glen Hoffsis. “We are looking forward to serving Ocala and Marion County by providing the very best emergency care possible to the pets in this community and by strengthening our relationships with Ocala practitioners, who have entrusted us to help them meet this need.”
The state-of-the-art, 5000 square-foot facility is located at 3200 SW 27th Ave., near the Paddock Mall. The new clinic will will provide basic to advanced emergency care between 5 p.m. and 8 a.m. during the week, and around the clock on weekends and holidays, bridging the gap during time periods when veterinarians’ offices are typically closed.
The clinic will be staffed by small animal emergency and critical care clinicians, with additional support personnel. The staff will rotate shifts in Ocala while continuing to provide services at the UF Small Animal Hospital in Gainesville.
Dr. Dion Osborne, an Ocala veterinarian and a graduate of the UF veterinary college, worked with practitioners in his area to create the Pet Emergency Treatment Service corporation for the purpose of creating a new emergency clinic. Soon after, talks with UF began in an effort to determine how the two groups might work together to better serve pet owners in the Marion County region.
“We’re all proud of this new relationship, which represents a meaningful collaboration among Ocala-area veterinarians as well as with the University of Florida,” Osborne said.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for all of us to provide even better service to our clients. At this time we have 21 veterinary practices that have committed to participate in this endeavor, and many more have agreed to refer their patients to the new emergency clinic when needed,” he added.