(Photo above: Dr. Deborah Putnam, Dr. Cody Menasco & Dr. Sarah Cummings | by Red Owl Photography)
Riverside Animal Hospital was created by Sarah Cummings, DVM, Cody Menasco, DVM and Deborah Putnam, DVM who aim to provide the highest quality veterinary care in a fun, friendly and compassionate atmosphere.
With their combined 35 plus years’ experience, Riverside Animal Hospital first opened in April 2015 where they offer comprehensive veterinary care for dogs and cats. Services range from preventative, dental, surgical and critical care with longer appointment times.
“Longer appointment times are important,” says Cummings, “to make sure owners have more time with the doctors. Often we have new clients come to see us who have not had things explained very well to them in the past and they are confused or frustrated. Taking the time to explain the disease or condition goes a long way in helping owners successfully care for their pets.”
All three owners previously worked together at a veterinary practice that closed abruptly in 2014. Following the closure, they found themselves considering becoming associates in other practices in Bend or relocating their families. When they decided to open a practice together Dr. Cummings says, “advisors frequently cautioned us regarding the difficulty of partnerships and the increased workload and stress that comes with business ownership.”
In the end it has proved to be a very positive and rewarding experience for all three. None can imagine doing this on her own.
Dr. Cummings shares, “We strive to be understanding of our patients’ needs and the needs of our clients. It’s our goal to provide excellent communication and present all options for our clients, helping them make informed decisions for the health of their pets.”
Speaking for all partners, Dr. Cummings says, “All three of us were fortunate in that we all knew at a young age we wanted to become veterinarians. The relationships we form with our patients and their families is one of the things we all enjoy most about what we do. Being able to help animals that are in pain or not feeling well is both challenging and very rewarding. Every day is different, every patient is unique and we are always learning.”
Ever passionate about the field of veterinary science, Dr. Cummings explains, “Women now comprise well over 75 percent of newly graduated veterinarians. As corporations are increasingly acquiring veterinary clinics and hospitals nationwide, the face of hospital ownership is changing. Women stepping into the role of practice ownership will be vital in maintaining locally owned veterinary practices that represent the values of a community.
This summer Riverside Animal Hospital reminds pet owners to be mindful of the heat. They encourage locals not to view the car as a safe place to have pets during the day and to restrict or limit activity as temperatures rise. Pets can sunburn and get skin cancers therefore limiting UV exposure, especially for pets with thin hair coats or very light skin is important. Be careful about algae blooms in the surrounding lakes because not all water is safe for pets to drink. And lastly, asphalt and concrete can burn paws on hot days. The gold standard is, if you can’t walk barefoot on the surface, your pet shouldn’t either
Riverside Pet Hospital
http://www.riversidevetbend.com, 25 NW Olney Ave, Bend, OR
No. employees: 12
Hot News: This summer we have been seeing a large number of upper respiratory infections in dogs (kennel cough). Many more than we’ve ever seen before. This disease is highly contagious through direct contact and also sharing of water bowls. We are recommending avoiding dog parks and other popular areas where there is lots of contact (busy trails in-town for example). Vaccines against kennel cough are available, and while they not 100 percent effective, with the high number of cases seen and some dogs even developing pneumonia, we are urging more owners to consider this vaccine.
Outlook for growth: First year of operations exceeded all our goals. Community response has been amazing.