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P.O. Box 1989
West Palm Beach, FL 33402-1989
(561) 355-2754
FAX: (561) 355-3819
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Palm Beach County
Board of County

Mary Lou Berger

Hal R. Valeche
Vice Mayor

Paulette Burdick

Shelley Vana

Steven L. Abrams

Melissa McKinlay

Priscilla A. Taylor

County Administrator

Verdenia C. Baker

"An equal opportunity
Affirmative Action Employer"

Electronic Press Release

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County Offers Program with Local Veterinarians to Help Adopted Pets Get a Healthy Start

For release: Aug. 9, 2011
Contact: Elizabeth Harfmann, 561-233-1222

Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control has started a program providing each new pet owner with a free veterinary visit within seven days of adopting a pet.  Due to the successful growth of the year-long trial period, the program is now operating on a permanent basis.  Upon adoption, participating veterinarians generously provide a health care certificate that is good for a free veterinary visit during the first seven days.  Each certificate is worth up to $500 in savings for treatment costs.

A pet in a shelter can come down with a cold or an upset stomach from the change in routine and diet.  The Health Care Certificate Program provides treatment for several of the common illnesses that afflict adopted shelter pets within the first week of adoption. 

This life-saving partnership is a win-win for all.  According to participating veterinarian Dr. Michelle Durkee of West Palm Animal Clinic, “This is a great opportunity for a new pet owner to meet with a veterinarian for free and get answers to any questions or concerns,” she said.  “It eases the mind of adopters knowing they will have help and support after an adoption.”  Adopted pets stay healthier because a veterinary relationship is immediately established, and fewer pets are surrendered back to Animal Care and Control.

“I am very supportive of Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control and the owners who choose to save the life of a shelter pet through adoption,” said Dr. Patricia Forsythe of All Paws Animal Clinic.  “This Health Care Certificate Program is to be commended. A well-informed pet owner will be a responsible and loving pet owner,” she said.

More than 20 local veterinarians, including six Veterinary Centers of America, are participating in the program.  Animal Care and Control is extremely grateful for this partnership to help homeless pets in Palm Beach County. 

To see the certificate and list of participating veterinarians, visit and click on Free Health Care Certificate Program.

Animal Care and Control is located at 7100 Belvedere Road, West Palm Beach, 33411.  The shelter hours are:   Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.   Please visit for more information or to see a listing of all animals available for adoption.

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