HAARTS Program Saves Lives
Published July 16th, 2014
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Its a match made in medicine.
Animals that need a doctor... and doctors that need an animal have benefitted through a program by the University of Florida's Veterinary School.
Students are taking care of animals and saving lives.
"Everybody that goes to veterinary school probably dreams of helping animals," says Natalie Isaza, Service Chief for the Community Outreach Program
And that's exactly what Isaza and a group of students are doing.
What was started by a veterinary student five years ago, has saved around 15,000 lives.
"I have the best job in the world."
Helping Alachua's Animals Requiring Treatment and Surgery, known as HAARTS, is a volunteer program where UF vet students offer their services to animals in shelters and rescues.
Their goal is to keep them from being euthanized.
"We select our candidates because we want them to be good adoption candidates in the future. So we want them to be of course nice animals, dogs or cats, and we want them to have a disease or condition that has a very good prognosis, that with treatment we should be able to help them."
The students get the chance to improve their skill and get experience performing surgeries.
The animals, they get a second chance and a forever home.
"This community is really fortunate because we have so many animal lovers and so many people that care. And we work really, really hard to make sure that we can save as many animals as we can."
The program works with different shelters and rescue groups around the county.
And when an animal is in need of medical attention, HAARTS comes to their rescue.
"It's so rewarding because i get to do as a veterinarian what i always dreamed a veterinarian did, and that's just help animals."
And she's doing just that.
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