Service animals can get eye exams

By The Mercury

The Veterinary Health Center at Kansas State University will participate in the American College of Veterinary Opthalmologists/StokesRx National Service Dog Eye Exam Event to screen service animals that dedicate their lives to serving the public.

To qualify, animals must be currently working and certified by a formal training program or organization or currently enrolled in a formal training program. The certifying organization could be national, regional or local in nature. Owners/agents can register the animal at Registration ends April 30.

During the complete ocular examination, board-certified ophthalmologists Amy Rankin, associate professor of ophthalmology, and Jessica Slack, assistant professor of ophthalmology, will look for problems, including redness, squinting, corneal clouding, retinal disease, cataracts and other serious abnormalities. Early detection and treatment are vital to these service animals. The Veterinary Health Center will schedule eye exams for service animals on Monday, May 5, and Friday, May 30, in Mosier Hall.

“Our goal is to screen active working animals from all fields of service for eye diseases that could impair the ability to perform their job, and in doing so, help them better serve their human owners and handlers,” Slack said. “We are honored to participate in this important event for the second consecutive year. It is very interesting to learn the duties of all the animals we meet, and it emphasizes the truly vital role these animals play in the lives of the people with whom they work and serve.”

The Veterinary Health Center established the Service Dog Eye Exam Fund to provide eye examinations at no cost to the owner. Contributions to this fund can be sent to Kristin Loving, 103 Trotter Hall, Manhattan, KS 66506.

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