FORT COLLINS, Colo. (KDVR) — A Fort Collins-based veterinarian headed back to Ukraine last month, this time with a truck and mobile vet clinic to continue to help locals.
“We took the first mobile vet clinic to Ukraine, had it built in Arizona then we took it on a boat, took about six months to get it over there,” volunteer vet, founder and national director of The Street Dog Coalition Dr. Jon Geller said.
FOX31 first interviewed Dr. Geller in March of 2022 when he went to the Ukraine and Romania border and set up a vet clinic. The clinic there was to help fleeing refugees receive passports so their pets could travel to other European countries safely.
A year and a half later, Dr. Geller said Ukrainians were starting to return, so he and some volunteers made their way back to help. This time, though, they actually went into the country.
“I was concerned about working in a war zone but I was also anxious to see what it was like,” Dr. Geller said.
He described despite some nightly sirens and drones being shot down, things were relatively quiet and he is very impressed with the spirit of the Ukraine people.
“They said, ‘We’re not going to let this war destruct our lives forever, so were coming back and taking our chances’ and they went back to their homes,” he said.
He said while there, along with other volunteers they performed hundreds of surgeries along with vaccines for family pets, horses, donkeys and street animals.
“In our vet clinic we had as many as four surgeries going on at one time inside there,” Dr. Geller said.
He said sterilization ended up being one of the most performed surgeries.
The clinic accepts donations in order to provide free medical care and related services to pets of people at risk of or experiencing homelessness.