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VTH hosts tours, learning and fun Friday and Saturday

March 31, 2014
by Rachel Griess

Thousands of community members are expected at the 35th annual open house hosted by Colorado State University's James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital this weekend, and visitors will take part in hospital tours, demonstrations and veterinary talks about caring for companion animals.

Scenes from the VTH Open House

(6 images)

The annual Veterinary Teaching Hospital Open House gives community members an inside look at CSU's famous animal hospital.

Visitors enjoy radiographs that display patient health issues.

The Avian, Exotic, and Zoological Medicine Service cares for pets with feathers and scales.

Kiddos who come to the Open House love seeing animals like alpacas up close.

You call it a goat; CSU's veterinary students call it a "small ruminant."

Open House demonstrations will feature dogs used for police work and search-and-rescue missions.

The event is free and open to the public. The open house runs 6-8 p.m. Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday at the hospital, 300 W. Drake Road in Fort Collins. Learn more

Among the highlights will be tours of CSU’s renowned vet hospital, which treats about 40,000 animal patients of all species each year – while also developing medical advancements for pets and people and training students in the nation’s No. 3 veterinary school.

New to the event will be live music and food vendors at midday Saturday.

Leading veterinarians will provide lectures with insights and tips on topics including exotic pets, equine emergencies and household items that are poisonous to pets.

Demonstrations on Saturday will showcase the talents of dogs used for police work, and search-and-rescue missions.

Fifth-grader's art inspires open house promotional design

Are you wondering who created the colorful drawing of a draft horse, bird, cat, dog, and ram used to promote the Veterinary Teaching Hospital's Open House?

Fort Collins fifth-grader Ava Perry created art used to promote the open house.Meet Ava Perry, an aspiring artist and animal lover in fifth grade at Kruse Elementary School in Fort Collins. Her work is featured in ads, postcards, and posters. 

On Monday, Ava received her own version of the poster featuring her work. "I love it," she exclaimed. "I want to carry this poster around with me all day."

Her fifth-grade classmates likewise erupted with excitement when Ava was named the grand prize winner for the 2014 Veterinary Teaching Hospital drawing contest.

"She put a lot of thought into what the hospital does," said Alexandra Perry, Ava's mother. "She wanted to be sure to include all of those animals."

Since the age of 5, Ava has been interested in art and has always drawn inspiration from animals, her mom said.

The work of Ava and other young artists will be displayed at the hospital during the open house, and grade-level winners will receive prizes. Each year before winter break, CSU veterinary students invite schoolchildren in area public schools to enter the drawing contest; veterinary students pick the art that best illustrates the vet hospital mission of providing "the best care for our best friends."

Open house schedule

The schedule is as follows:

Friday, April 4
  • 6 p.m. - “Exotic Medicine,” Dr. Matt Johnson
  • 7 p.m. - “Critical Care for Pets,” Dr. Justin Mathis
Saturday, April 5
  • 8:30 a.m. - Tours start every 15 minutes and run throughout the day
  • 9 a.m. - “The Veterinary Teaching Hospital’s Plans for the Future”
  • 9:30 a.m. - “So You Want to Be a Veterinarian,” Dr. Christine Hardy
  • 10 a.m. & 11a.m. - Demonstration: Larimer County Search and Rescue Dogs
  • 10:30 a.m. - “Equine First Aid,” Dr. Dean Hendrickson
  • 11:30 a.m. - “Zoonotic Diseases,” Dr. Dave Van Metre
  • Noon - Welcome ceremony
  • 12:30 p.m. - “Common Pet Toxins and Preventions,” Dr. Luke Wittenburg
  • 1:30 p.m. - “Medical Acupuncture, Massage and Laser Therapy,” Dr. Narda Robinson
  • 2 p.m. & 3p.m. - Demonstration: Fort Collins Police K-9 Unit
  • 2:30 p.m. - “Community Practice and Shelter Medicine,” Dr. Rebecca Ruch-Gallie