Good shots: Clinic held in parking lot

Friday, April 16, 2010
From left, Ellis Lee holds his mom's dog, Babe, while Tractor Supply Company employee Crystal, seated, helps with the paperwork, and veterinarian Dr. Greg Harris gets another rabies tag ready while talking to Donna Harrison. TSC employee Whitney was handing out dog treats.

Almost 80 Marshall County pets, mostly dogs, got their rabies shots at a "clinic" in the parking lot of the Tractor Supply Store last Saturday.

It's done to serve the community, according to a Chapel Hill Veterinary Services employee. This way, people who find it hard to get to the clinic can get their pets vaccinated.

When asked how he agreed to do the clinic in the parking lot, Dr. Greg Harris said, "They caught us at a weak moment."

"It was Crystal's idea," he continued, referring to a TSC employee who used to work with him in Chapel Hill.

"It's easier than calling for an appointment," said Jeanette Williams, explaining why she brought Mickey, a black Chihuahua, and Killer, a Yorkie.

Many lap dogs, like Mickey and Killer, came to the clinic, but so did Merlin, the Great Dane. At 190 pounds, he's a gentle giant, and surely one of Marshall County's largest canines. Owner Donna Harrison said she got Merlin as a rescue dog

The mood on the warm, sunny afternoon was cheerful, and people waited their turn patiently. The TSC provided dog treats, and Harris gave away dental chews for dogs as well.

Harris treats both small and large animals. His day wasn't over when the rabies clinic ended at 4 p.m. -- he had been on the phone with the owners of a calving cow and a horse with colic, and was planning to make farm calls on both of them before he went home. Dr. Ray Wakefield is in practice with him, and another veterinarian who can treat exotics visits the practice in Chapel Hill on Tuesdays and Fridays.