UF to offer screenings for service animals

UF veterinary ophthalmology technician Michelle Wilhelmy helps a service dog visiting the UF Small Animal Hospital in 2022 for the annual service dog eye and heart screening event.
Courtesy of UF Health

The University of Florida’s Small Animal Hospital will offer free eye and heart exams for service animals on May 19.

The screenings will be available between 9:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. Owners or their representatives should call Jaime Wilson at the UF Small Animal Hospital, 352-392-2235, to schedule an appointment.

Registration is required and the deadline is the end of April.

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The guidelines for service animals include guide dogs, disability assistance dogs, detection dogs, police dogs, search and rescue dogs, and formally trained and certified therapy dogs. UF requires that the animal must be active and certified or enrolled in formal training by a program or organization to qualify. Click here to find out the qualifications.

“Healthy eyes and vision are critical for a service animal to be able to perform to the best of its ability,” said UF Dr. Caryn Plummer in a press release. “Regular screening may help detect problems early that are potentially sight- or comfort-threatening, so intervention may be possible.”

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