New vet tech for pets

Senior Airman Steven Albion, 92nd Security Forces Squadron military working dog handler, and MWD Rosso pose for a photo after x-ray exam Aug. 22, 2017, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. X-ray exams are administered to the dogs anytime a health concern is presented or as the dogs approach a senior age.

Senior Airman Steven Albion, 92nd Security Forces Squadron military working dog handler, and MWD Rosso complete an x-ray exam Aug. 22, 2017, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Washington. X-ray exams are administered to the dogs anytime a health concern is presented or as the dogs approach a senior age. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Jesenia Landaverde)

FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. -- Fairchild’s Veterinary Treatment Facility, is scheduled to receive their first full body and dental x-ray machines this fall, providing a more comprehensive care plan for Military Working Dogs and family pets.

The facility’s main goal is to provide the best possible care for the 92nd Security Forces Squadron MWDs.

“We need to be able to perform x-rays during the day or middle of the night,” said U.S. Army Capt. Margaret James, 92nd Medical Group veterinary treatment facility officer in charge. “In a critical situation we’ll be able to identify and correct the situation and prevent a MWD from dying.”

The x-ray machine will primarily be used on MWDs, but will additionally provide services for personally owned animals.

“One to two times a day, we get a patient that can use an x-ray,” James said. “Therefore, we send them off base, making it challenging to provide adequate care to the personally owned animals.”

This equipment will allow well-rounded exams for not only MWD but also POA.

“It’s a diagnostic tool,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Brandin Versteegh, 92nd MDG animal care NCO in charge. “If a sick dog comes in vomiting, there are a million reasons why it could be, but the new machine can help rule out some possibilities.”

The facility is not an emergency clinic but does administer vaccines, spades, neuters and soon, x-rays.

Services are available to all DoD ID cardholders including active duty military, guard and reserve, dependents and retirees. For more information on the Veterinary Treatment Facility, call (509) 247-2584.