SPOKANE -- It is a momentous day for Spokane's animal shelter. Spokanimal held a grand opening Sunday for its new veterinary clinic thanks to a $750,000 donation.
The animal center is named after Dorothy Clark who named Spokanimal and the Spokane Humane Society in her will. The one main, but important, difference this veterinary clinic and Spokanimal's old one is simply size.
Spokanimal's new veterinary clinic has been 19 months in the making. Last March, Spokane's two shelters received a sizable donation from the late Dorothy Clark and more in the months to come. Spokanimal's portion added up to $750,000.
The new center has three surgery rooms with room for four tables in a suite tripled in size. It has twice the number of exam rooms and a large lobby.
"We have so much more room. People were sitting on top of each other and sitting up the stairs waiting to be seen for their vaccinations in the afternoon, we have this big beautiful lobby," said Spokanimal C.A.R.E. Director Gail Mackie.
Caroleone Eres and Manny Eres are the executors of Clark's will. They say Clark dreamed of having a clinic that spayed and neutered cats and dogs to cut down on pet overpopulation. Spokanimal has actually performed sterilizations in the new clinic the past couple weeks leading up to the grand opening. The director says the surgery team has increased efficiency up to 25%.
The shelter hopes to perform 7,000 surgeries next year, more than doubling the number completed in 2009. The staff now feel they have the facility to accomplish that goal.
The vet clinic was just phase one. Spokanimal is working to raise money to complete its training center which makes up another section of the building.