This year will mark the 10th year since the Western College of Veterinary Medicine began hosting the veterinary program in the La Ronge area.

The program operates by bringing Veterinarians and Veterinary Technicians from private clinics in Saskatchewan, as well as from the Veterinary College, and providing them with experience in the field.

“We’re going to be offering vet checks, so checkups with vaccines, de-worming, and some minor medical things, and then we will also be doing spays and neuters, so that’s kind of our typical plan, and we can also do things like provide euthanasia services for animals that are at the end of their lives,” said Jordan Woodsworth, Program Lead for the Northern Engagement and Community Outreach Program.

The program also benefits northern communities, as it brings various veterinary services straight to the community that are typically harder to access in the north.

Woodsworth said that over the last few years, the program has seen more and more interest within the community.

“Booking started about a month ago, and we just had a really fast and enthusiastic uptick, and over the years that’s been growing. For many years, we would show up and we wouldn’t be completely full, and then we would have kind of a rush right when we got to the community, but over the last couple of years it’s gotten to be a little bit more booked up in advance, and this is the first time we have ever been completely full before we have even arrived, so it’s pretty exciting to see that kind of interest in the services,” said Woodsworth.

The clinic coming to the La Ronge area in May has already been booked to capacity, though people who are still wanting to book an appointment can send out their application forms that can be found online or through the band office and may be put on a waiting list or scheduled for an appointment when the clinic returns this August.

This month’s veterinary clinic will be held at the Jonas Roberts Memorial Community Centre from May 11 to 14. Those with appointments are asked to bring veterinarian records for their animals receiving care as well as bring their animals to their appointments on a leash or in a carrier.

(Photo courtesy of University of Saskatchewan.)