As part of the second National Service Dog Eye Exam Day, the James L. Voss Teaching Hospital at Colorado State University will provide free screening eye exams to eligible service dogs from 8:30 a.m. – noon and 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. on Friday, May 8. The hospital is at 300 W. Drake Road in Fort Collins.
This national day is sponsored by the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists and is the largest public service effort in the history of veterinary ophthalmology. Free exams will help preserve the eyesight of thousands of service dogs across America. In 2008, more than 1,500 service dogs nationally and in Canada had free eye exams, and veterinary ophthalmologists performed $500,000 worth of services. At Colorado State, canine eye exams are normally an $85 service.
Appointments are required for the exams. To schedule an appointment, service dog owners must go through two steps. First, service dog owners and agents must register online at http://www.acvoeyexam.org to qualify for a free exam. Then, to secure an appointment, owners and agents must call the CSU Veterinary Hospital at (970) 297-4137 to schedule an appointment. Registration begins April 1 and closes April 29. Space is limited.
The free exams will be provided by specialized veterinarians in the university’s ophthalmology section at the hospital. The complimentary eye exam will screen guide dogs for vision problems. Additional services are optional and regular fees will apply.
Qualifying service dog groups include guide dogs, handicapped assistance dogs, detection dogs, police dogs, search-and-rescue dogs, and certified, trained therapy dogs from the Delta Society. Qualifying dogs include, but are not limited to, those from local pet therapy groups including the Larimer Animal People Partnership and Human Animal Bond in Colorado. Dogs must be active working dogs certified by a formal training program or organization or currently enrolled in a formal training program to qualify.
The Veterinary Teaching Hospital is part of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Colorado State.