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New Veterinarian takes on patients

New Barksdale Veterinarian takes on patients

Barksdale’s new veterinarian, Dr. Aundrea Hara, poses with her dog, Piper, at the Vet Clinic at Barksdale Air Force Base, Oct. 20, 2017. Hara’s addition to the clinic saves Barksdale pet owners and military working dog handler’s time and money by providing routine check-ups at the on base clinic. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Sydney Campbell)

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. --

The Barksdale Veterinarian Clinic recently expanded its services with the arrival of their newest vet.

Dr. Aundrea Hara saves Barksdale pet owners and MWD handlers’ time and money by providing routine checkups at the clinic.

“Before I got here, an Army veterinarian would come down from Little Rock, Ark., to work on patients once a month,” Hara said. “But now MWDs and personal pets can be seen here.”

Prior to Hara’s arrival, there was no one certified in the clinic to perform routine exams and provide certain vaccinations. The vet technicians could only provide boosters, a series of initial vaccines for puppies or kittens, and prescriptions.

“We are only certified to do so much, so we had vets come from Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark., Houston, and Fort Polk, La., but they could not visit us as often as we needed,” said Elizabeth Duncan, vet technician at the clinic. “It was very slow this past year, but ever since she came in early September our work load has picked up.”

“It’s great to see so many animals getting help, especially the MWDs,” Duncan continued.

Barksdale’s vet clinic is attached to the 2nd Medical Group, however all employees are hired and trained and certified by the U.S. Army. This is due to the Air Force not having a career field for veterinarian services.

“I am still waiting on getting my credentials with the Army, which takes patience,” Hara said. “Another challenge I face is learning the rules and regulations that civilian-run clinics don’t have. I will be fully operational soon, however.”

The base has already seen the positive impact of having a permanent vet on base. Many pet owners have already gotten their animals checked.

“Having a vet on base makes our jobs easier and saves us time,” said Staff Sgt. Stephen Lammers, 2nd Security Forces MWD trainer. “Anytime a dog would need something we would have to travel hours away. Having Dr. Hara here has been extremely convenient.”

Appointments are scheduled two weeks in advance due to high volume of requests. For questions or to make an appointments, call 318-456-3923.