Ontario veterinarian, others, help Caribbean dogs, cats


An Ontario veterinarian’s canceled conference in the Caribbean nation of Turks and Caicos led to the startup of a nonprofit organization that has helped hundreds of homeless dogs and cats that roam the islands, hungry and in poor health.

Dr. Sue Burkhart of Animal Medical Center of Ontario said she decided to go on the trip in the fall of 2020 despite a continuing education meeting being canceled, and volunteered to help a veterinarian for the week.

While there, she discovered the nonprofit Turks and Caicos Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which is dedicated to preventing abuse of animals in the Caribbean island nation.

Dr.  Sue Burkhart, a veterinarian at Animal Medical Center of Ontario, performs surgery on an animal while volunteering at Turks and Caicos.

Burkhart spayed and neutered dogs while on the tropical island.

“While I was there for the week I realized what a problem they had with overpopulation of animals and stray animals and so I thought, I’m not comfortable with this. At the time the world was kind of falling apart (COVID-19) and I thought this is a problem I can actually help. It’s something I can do to actually give back. I know what to do about this problem and I could do my part,” Burkhart said Monday.

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