Project Samana Experience

Our Dr. Françoise Tyler shares about her experience working with and being a part of Project Samana

This November, Dr. Carrie McColgan, Treasure Dreher and I ventured to the beautiful Samana peninsula of the Dominican Republic to participate in Project Samana, a veterinary outreach program which was founded by Dr. Bob Labdon and Dr. Jay Merriam of Massachusetts.  The Dominican Republic is still considered the second poorest nation in the western hemisphere, and the animals here suffer as a result.   In keeping with The Village Vets core values, we helped provide essential veterinary care not only for dogs and cats, but also for horses and mules.

Dr. Françoise Tyler shares her Project Samana experience with us…

This November, Dr. Carrie McColgan, Treasure Dreher and I ventured to the beautiful Samana peninsula of the Dominican Republic to participate in Project Samana, a veterinary outreach program which was founded by Dr. Bob Labdon and Dr. Jay Merriam of Massachusetts.  The Dominican Republic is still considered the second poorest nation in the western hemisphere, and the animals here suffer as a result.   In keeping with The Village Vets core values, we helped provide essential veterinary care not only for dogs and cats, but also for horses and mules.

Project Samana founder, Dr. Labdon and a group of veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary students volunteer veterinary services twice a year in Samana.  During this particular visit, we successfully spayed and neutered 240 dogs and cats and castrated 20 horses and mules.  We also provided much needed deworming, parasite control, medical treatment for these animals and health education for their owners.  Dr. McColgan and Treasure primarily offered expertise with the equitarian portion of the program.  Keep in mind that these horses and mules are essential working animals used for income for a family, transportation and tourism.

Personally, this trip was an experience of a lifetime!  It reminded me of a veterinary version of the 1970’s TV series, MASH.  Our outdoor surgery clinic was established just inside the harbor of Samana, on the open-air porch of a pizza restaurant (see below).   While we were conversing with the families, examining the patients, performing the surgeries, and then monitoring these sweet animals during their recovery – just by looking up we could see some of the most magnificent natural scenery. Just across from the makeshift clinic are gorgeous mountains with tropical vegetation and the bluegreen water of the bay.  The Dominicans were also so inviting, friendly and grateful for our presence.  This trip was simply a treat for all of us!

As a result of Project Samana’s efforts, the human/animal bond in Samana has grown immensely, and the overall care of the animals, education and nutrition have also improved.  Although we were there for only 6 days, we left Samana with an amazing feeling of euphoria!  This trip reminded us of the reason for becoming a veterinarian!  It also fulfilled a lifetime dream of mine.  Our goal now is to expand into other areas near Samana where veterinary care is much needed, and we are hoping to start our Project Samana-“Georgia Contigency” this Fall.

For more information about Project Samana, please visit or simply email any of us.  We welcome any ideas or suggestions and serious volunteers.  Feel free to visit the following Facebook pages for more information: Equitarian Initiative and Project Samana.

    

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of three animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.

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Recent Posts

deb

A Technician’s Experience with Project Samana

EttaJane--theQuarantine

Experiencing Radiotherapy With My Cat…PHEW!

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of three animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.