– by Robyn Maharaj
Like Winnipeg’s fabled North End, Dr. Rhonda Stockburger has a long history with this historic and colourful community through her veterinary office, McPhillips Animal Hospital. A graduate of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in 1986, she started there shortly upon graduation. Over the years, she evolved from associate veterinarian, to partner, and then to sole owner of the practice which first opened its doors in 1972.
Dr. Stockburger and animal health technician, Tara Bartecki check out a 12 month old pup that is ready for adoption. Photo credit: Winnipeg Free Press
“All of us here like to think of our patients and clients as family. We strive to treat our patients as if they were our own pets. We want to aid our clients in fostering a strong bond with their pets, and helping them live a long and happy life,” says Dr. Stockburger, who was born and raised in Medicine Hat, Alberta.
Treating primarily canines and felines, rabbits and “pocket pets” also fill out their furry patient clientele. Because dogs and cats are their primary base of patient care, having top of the line veterinary medical equipment means being able to diagnose and treat injury and disease that simply was not even possible a decade ago.
“We have recently added dental radiography and laser therapy to our other services. Veterinary medicine has come a long way, and continues to change frequently. We strive to strengthen our techniques, and methods of caring for our patients, to ensure we can provide the best care to your loved ones. Our goal is to recommend the best treatments and testing for our patients, while working within our clients’ lifestyle and budget,” says Dr. Stockburger. McPhillips Animal Hospital has five licensed veterinarians on staff as well as five Animal Health Technologists and several office and animal assistants.
Animal health technicians Jenine, Dawn treat Sabre. Photo credit: Shannon McGill
Services provided by McPhillips Animal Hospital include: Wellness & Vaccination Programs, Medical Services, Surgical Services, Nutrition Counseling and Dental Care. Specific services available also include: Dental and General Digital Radiology, Chemotherapy, Glaucoma Testing, Therapeutic Laser ECG’s, as well as various animal surgeries. They also have an in-house laboratory that allows veterinary staff access to quick test results which can then be communicated to the pet owner.
Animal health technician Danielle checks Andre
“Whenever possible, we encourage preventative medicine: routine wellness examinations, vaccinations, heartworm, tick and other prevention, spaying and neutering, and wellness blood testing, to prevent emergency care whenever possible. Preventative care tends to be less expensive and less traumatic for the pet than emergency care.”
As most dog owners who take their dogs in for regular vet visits know, dental care is playing an ever increasing role in aiding veterinarians with their work.
“Dental health is so important to your pet’s well being. Dental disease is so much more than bad breath. Bacteria in the mouth can lead to negative effects on kidneys, liver, lungs and heart. We recommend daily brushing, routine oral exams, and in hospital dental cleanings. We also carry dental health products such as toothpastes, dental diets, oral rinses, and dental treats,” says Dr. Stockburger.
McPhillips Animal Hospital also provides real world practicum experience to various students and volunteer and intern positions for those interested in pursuing a career in veterinary medicine.
In addition to sponsoring Kilcona Park Dog Club, McPhillips Animal Hospital supports their animal community such as Guide Dogs of Canada and other helper dog organizations. They do their best to help stray animals in need working with various rescue organizations and have established their own adoption program by finding permanent loving homes for those animals they’ve rescued.
Socializing at Kilcona Dog Park Photo credit: Siberian Studios – Paul Cote
“We support Kilcona Park Dog Club because off-leash dog parks are a great place for dogs to get the exercise and socialization they need. We do recommend that your dog be kept up to date on vaccinations and preventative medications, and that you monitor them at all times at the dog park to make sure they are compatible with the other dogs there.”
Located in a busy strip mall – 2211B McPhillips Street, it is just south of Garden City Shopping Centre.
About Robyn Maharaj
Robyn is a writer, fundraiser, marketer and former arts administrator who works as a freelance grant and feature writer. She works in fund development for a Southern Florida medical foundation for adult stem cell research. Robyn’s writing and poetry has been published in Canadian literary journals, newspapers, magazines and anthologies. Her first book (co-author, an American true crime story) will be published in 2015.
A member of Kilcona Park Dog Club’s Marketing Committee, Robyn talent for writing finds expression on the club’s website, where she is a regular content provider. Robyn recently helped the Board secure a $20,000 grant for park improvements, developed the “Number Two Clue” responsible pet education initiative, and promoted KPDC’s successful campaign to elect a dog-friendly Mayor and Council. An enthusiastic volunteer at fundraising and park stewardship events, Robyn is seen below serving up tasty dog treats at the Bone Appetit Bistro.