This article originally appeared on This Is Reno news site.
Options Veterinary Care, a Reno-based nonprofit organization, has just secured a location on Longley Lane in Reno to open the region’s first independent nonprofit, low-cost veterinary clinic. The space is currently being renovated and with enough community support raising additional funds, the clinic will open in late summer, serving Washoe County and surrounding communities.
“Pets often suffer when their people cannot afford treatment,” said Denise Stevens, CEO of Options Veterinary Care. “By opening this nonprofit clinic, we will be able provide access to veterinary care so that families can keep pets and don’t have to make the heartbreaking decision to surrender them to a shelter.”
According to a 2019 study conducted by Maddie’s Fund, more than 36,000 pets in Washoe County do not receive needed care due to financial barriers. The clinic will also be a resource for Northern Nevada veterinary businesses, animal shelters and social service agencies. Currently, these organizations struggle to find solutions for people who love their pets but who cannot afford spay/neuter surgery or veterinary care.
The clinic will provide affordable spay/neuter and other traditional veterinary services – surgery, dental work, X-rays, diagnostics, and wellness checks – and it will target those who are unable to afford veterinary care otherwise. It will also provide spay/neuter surgeries for nonprofit rescue groups, increasing the adoptability of homeless animals and improving the health of community cats including those located in nearby rural counties that have limited veterinary access.
The Options Veterinary Care clinic is expected to serve more than 15,000 pets in its first year of operation with the capacity to grow.
This venture is realizing a long-time dream of cofounders Stevens and Options medical director, Diana Lucree, DVM. “The goal is to make sure animals receive needed care even when their person cannot afford standard fees,” Lucree said. “Options Veterinary Care will be a resource for senior citizens and other low-income pet owners as well as those who care for community cats.”
The clinic’s leadership team includes Bonney Brown, former CEO of Nevada Humane Society from 2007 to 2013, and Diane Blankenburg, former community programs director for Nevada Humane Society. Together they now run Humane Network, a national animal welfare consulting organization based in Reno.
Amanda Sanchez-Crawford leads the Options Veterinary Care Campaign committee, which is working to raise funds for the clinic. Sanchez-Crawford was a long-time anchor for KOLO 8 and founder of Amanda’s Amazing Animals. The committee also includes Mark Robison, former Reno Gazette-Journal engagement editor, and Patty Fabre-Johnson with RE/Max Professionals.
For more information or to donate, visit www.optionsveterinarycare.org.