Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Humane Society of Tampa Bay seeks to build low-cost veterinary clinic

When pets need medical care but their owners don't have much money, options have been limited. Too often, the pets' illnesses or injuries end up going untreated.

The Humane Society of Tampa Bay hopes to change that by building a clinic that will offer veterinary services at affordable prices.

"Right now, the only low-cost veterinary care that's available is spaying and neutering," said Sherry Silk, the executive director of the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. "What we want to do is offer the full range of veterinary services at reduced prices."

But the Humane Society needs a whole lot of money before it can offer those services to pet owners who don't have much of their own.

The organization recently bought a large vacant building adjacent to its headquarters at 3607 N Armenia Ave., just south of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. The building is about 8,000 square feet, more than enough for the full-service veterinary clinic the Humane Society envisions. Silk estimates that transforming the former retail space into a veterinary clinic will cost about $3 million.

The organization's fundraising efforts got a big boost in March when a local couple, Bob and Cathy Smith, donated a quarter of a million dollars. The Smiths gave the money in the name of their friend Alexis Saunders, who died from cancer on March 7 at age 34.

Saunders loved animals and was known at the Humane Society for rescuing unwanted, injured pets, including several that had been abused and abandoned in her Tampa Heights neighborhood. She would often care for them herself and find homes for them. But as her cancer progressed, she was unable to keep doing that. So she brought several animals to the Humane Society.

If enough other people make donations in Saunders' name, Silk said, the new clinic will be called the Alexis Saunders Animal Health Center. The Humane Society has set a goal of $1 million in donations to the Alexis Saunders Memorial Fund. If donors reach that goal, the organization will name the clinic after Saunders, Silk said.

The plan is for the center to offer everything from vaccinations to surgery at significantly reduced prices.

Too often, Silk said, money problems force people to forgo veterinary services, which can lead to prolonged suffering, illness or even death. In low-income areas, epidemics can result if a lot of people can't get pets vaccinated or treated for communicable diseases. Any Hillsborough County pet owner will be welcome to use the center's services, Silk said.

To make a donation to the Alexis Saunders Animal Health Center, visit the Humane Society of Tampa Bay's donation Web site, humanesocietytampa.org/donate/make-donation.

Marty Clear can be reached at mclear@tampabay.rr.com.

Humane Society of Tampa Bay seeks to build low-cost veterinary clinic 04/01/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 1:56pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Largo company's bomb-detecting laser device shows promise in finding fentanyl

    Military

    A retired Green Beret who runs a Largo defense company that makes bomb-detecting equipment sees a new use for his laser-based technology: Detecting the dangerous opioid fentanyl from a distance to protect law enforcement personnel and help with prosecutions.

    Tim Molner with Alakai Defense Systems of Largo demonstrates how a company device uses laser technology to analyze chemical residue from a safe distance. [JIM DAMASKE   |   Times]
  2. Clearwater Beach driver: 'My intentions were to take my own life'

    News

    CLEARWATER — Ryan Michael Stiles stuck close to the dunes and blared his horn when he drove onto Clearwater Beach last Thursday afternoon. He didn't want to hurt anyone there, he said in an interview from the Pinellas County Jail on Tuesday morning.

    Ryan Michael Stiles, 27, was arrested last Thursday after driving onto the sands of Clearwater Beach, police said. He is currently being held at the Pinellas County Jail.
  3. After Trump's partisan speech, Boy Scouts of America reiterates that it is 'wholly non-partisan'

    National

    Following President Donald Trump's campaign-style speech at the National Scout Jamboree in West Virginia on Monday evening, the Boy Scouts of America released a statement that did not comment on the president's remarks but stated that the nonprofit organization is "wholly non-partisan and does not promote any one …

    Members of the Boy Scouts of America listen as President Donald Trump addresses the 2017 National Scout Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel National Scout Reserve in Glen Jean, W.Va., on Monday. [Doug Mills | New York Times]
  4. Florida Gators want a White Out in home opener

    Blogs

    At least the Florida Gators are trying to do something to spice up this season's home opener.

  5. Stop expecting Gerald McCoy to be Warren Sapp

    Bucs

    Here's the problem when it comes to Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.

    Photo from National Pediatric Cancer Foundation The crowd cheered wildly for cancer survivor Joshua Fisher, left, and Tampa Bay Buc Gerald McCoy at the 14th annual Fashion Funds the Cure on May 6 to benefit the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation at Port Tampa Bay Terminal 2.