The Animal Medical Center
Come one, come all for a look inside the busiest animal hospital in the world!
by Yvette Brooks-Grant.
A while ago, I went to the Animal Medical Center (AMC), an eight story building located at 510 East Sixty-Second Street (right next to the East River), to see if all I'd heard about it was true, and it was!
I was showed around by Diane Jenkins, a veterinary assistant, and Erin McGrath, the public relations person.
First we saw the admissions room, which is basically the waiting room. There were rows of chairs, and on one wall there are huge pictures of people and animals.
Next we walked through it to the medicine room (pharmacy) where there are high shelves filled with all types of medicine for all types of animals.
Then we went into the examination room area where animals' problems are evaluated. The room where birds are examined didn't have any windows to make sure they couldn't escape!
Next, we went through swinging doors and down a long hallway with lots of vets running everywhere. There were tons of different departments: Intensive care wards, x-rays, heart monitors, and everything you can imagine, even grooming! Since they get patients ranging from pot-bellied pigs to lizards and snakes, they have to be ready for anything!
Diane Jenkins, our tour guide, told us that to become a veterinarian you must first attend 4 years of regular college. It used to be that mostly men were veterinarians, but now there are many more women veterinarians.There are many different specialties that veterinarians have, like:
There are also lots of veterinarian assistants. They even have people on staff who help treat people who have lost a pet and are grieving.
There are many success stories about patients at the Animal Medical Center. One is about Moe, a turtle who was hit by a car and had his shell pieced back together, and another famous one was a seeing-eye dog named Smokey who was hit by a car and almost lost his own sight. But he was ok. Near the time we visited, the big story was about a dog who had swallowed a huge knife in some birthday cake, and had it removed and was ok. He was on the Jay Leno show! There was also a beautiful black lab that had been found on the East River Drive and noone had claimed him yet, he was eventually adopted.Facts About the Animal Medical Center
Yvette Brooks-Grant hopes one day to become a veterinarian. She attends high school in Manhattan and has a frog, rabbit, hermit crab and snail. Check out her article about Pups with Purpose!
- first published in the May/June 1994 issue of ZuZu