Going Broke, UC Davis Fracture Program Needs Help

The Shelter/Rescue Fracture Surgery Program Fund has operated since 2008.

Fracture repairs give needy cats and dogs a second chance in life.

Dr. Phil Zeltzman

UC Davis veterinary students learning to save the lives of pets are now trying to breathe life into a service that has assisted hundreds of homeless animals.

The Shelter/Rescue Fracture Surgery Program Fund, which was founded in 2008 and relies on donations, is running out of money, second-year student Ayswarya Sundaram said.

“The program has been funded for around $30,000 a year, but more recently the costs are closer to $80,000,” Sundaram said.

Collaborating with shelter and rescue organizations, the service accepts young dogs and cats in need of fracture repairs. University of California, Davis, veterinarians donate their time in the operating rooms at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, but equipment, drugs and post-surgery care must be paid for.

The costs average $800 per patient, Sundaram said.

The surgeries also serve as instructional sessions for veterinary students.

“[The] fracture program is amazing because it helps us learn about orthopedic surgeries while at the same time helping shelter animals,” one student said. “If this program discontinues, due to lack of funds, it would be a great loss to us and the animals.”

More than 450 fractures in shelter and rescue animals have been repaired over the years. Without medical intervention, the animals may have faced euthanasia or amputation.

Donations to the program are accepted on a school website: http://bit.ly/1KKRBE8.

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