Remote Area Medical, the group that came to Bradenton last year to assist families that couldn’t afford a doctor, will assist families this year who can’t afford a veterinarian for their beloved family pets.
RAM’s free pet clinic, which is just for dogs and cats, is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11 at Braden River High School, 6545 S.R. 70 E., Bradenton, RAM pet clinic volunteers Len O’Hara and Sue Kolze announced Monday.
The pet clinic was previously announced to be on Nov. 10, but it has been moved a day ahead due to concerns about traffic, O’Hara said.
“November 10th turned out to be a bad time because it was a time when the students would be leaving classes and there could be traffic confusion,” O’Hara said. “November 11 is Veterans Day and there are no classes.”
The pet clinic can handle 500 pets for whom six volunteer veterinarians and 12 vet techs will provide vaccinations, flea treatments, micro-chipping and vouchers for spay and neuter.
Information will also be available on how pet owners can receive additional low cost or free services within the county, O’Hara said.
RAM will once again provide free care for humans as well and this year there are three human clinic days, rather than the two last year during RAM’s debut.
Free vision, dental and medical care will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. both Friday and Saturday, Nov. 11-12 and from 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13 at Manatee Technical College, 6305 State Road 70 E., Bradenton.
After last year, when 740 RAM volunteers performed 3,259 separate dental, optical and medical procedures on 1,618 patients at the first-ever Bradenton free clinic, principal organizer Dr. Richard Conard felt something was missing.
“After last year we reached out to Animal Network to see if the animal community would want to get involved,” Conard said Monday.
“I think Dr. Conard’s idea was great,” Kolze said. “Now we have a human side and a pet side so it becomes a family event.”
Conard and his team are distributing thousands of red and white fliers this year that advertise, “Free family healthcare” in English and Spanish.
Kolze helped put together a collaborative shelter partnership to get the pet clinic set up. Organizations that joined in include Animal Network, Animal Rescue Coalition, Bishop Animal Shelter, The Humane Society of Manatee County, Cat Depot, Manatee County Animal Services, Nate’s Honor Sanctuary and the The Humane Society of Lakewood Ranch.
Conard said while the human clinic is doing well on recruiting volunteer physicians, it still is seeking volunteer dentists, optometrists, opticians and ophthalmologists. To volunteer for a medical or hospitality role for any of the clinics or for information: 941-526-4766 or firstname.lastname@example.org.