In the back of the store, two small fold-out tables are set up. At the table to the right, Terri Braunworth hands each pet owner a questionnaire to fill out about their pet, confirms the vaccinations the pet will be receiving and then sends the pet owner one step to their left.
To the left is where the tension rises. The dogs scratch their claws against the table trying to escape and the cats try to cram themselves further against the back of their pet carriers — all to no avail. Veterinarian Judy Byarlay quickly pets them, gives them a quick health exam and administers the vaccinations their owner purchased.
“We’ve been doing the clinics for a little over a year,” said Braunworth, who started Palomino Valley Pet Rescue in 2007.
Braunworth said that she started the regular clinics through the pet rescue organization as a way to help owners keep their pets healthy. As a Humane Society volunteer and someone who grew up around animals, Braunworth said she has seen some bad cases of animal neglect and is happy to see so many people bring their pets to the vaccination clinics.
“We started at (Discount Pet Food and Supplies) because of the location, and because there is no one in this little valley area that does a clinic like this,” Braunworth said. “We get people from south Reno and stuff that come to clinics.”
Palomino Valley Pet Rescue, with Braunworth at the helm, has expanded the vaccine clinics to include three locations. She said that the second and fourth Saturday of the month are dedicated to Discount Pet Food and Supplies, while on the first Saturday of the month the group is at Pettin’ Place on Wells Avenue and on the third Saturday the rescue group is at Chloe’s Canine Cupboard in Fernely.
“Discount Pet Food is the busiest location,” Braunworth said, adding that the store also helps with the group’s pet adoptions. “Pettin’ Place is to help get more of the south Reno. Then we started the Fernley clinics, in five hours and ran out of vaccines.
“We are in the works to start a clinic at the Scraps store on South Virginia, and we’re hoping for July,” Braunsworth added.
Vaccinations at the clinic range in cost. The kitten pack is for cats under the age of four months and costs $22. It includes the kitten’s annual booster FVRCP shots and de-worming vaccination. The cat pack is $30 and includes the FVRCP vaccination and a rabies shot.
For dog owners, the puppy pack is for dogs younger than four months old and costs $33. It includes the DHPP and Bordetella vaccinations as well as de-worm vaccination. The dog pack is $35 and includes DHPP, Bordetella and Rabies vaccinations.
Each vaccination can also be purchased individually if needed.
During the May 9 clinic at Discount Pet Food and Supplies, pet owners patiently waited as Braunworth, Byarlay and a few volunteers helped keep the line moving. In addition to keeping their dogs and cats up to date on vaccinations, Washoe County Animal Control is also on site to help register animals that need it.
Travis Wong, owner of Discount Pet Food and Supplies, applauded Braunworth’s efforts to help the community. Wong said that Palomino Valley Pet Rescue works hard to give animals another chance at life when they would otherwise be euthanized at a shelter.
Wong said he also allows the group to bring rescued puppies to the store in hopes of finding them new homes. Braunworth said she brings kittens to Pettin’ Place to help find them homes.
“My grandfather had a farm and I’ve been around animals my whole life,” Braunworth said. “It was heartbreak to see these animals be euthanized that didn’t need to be.”
Adding her experience working at the Humane Society, Braunworth knew she wanted to do something to help the animals in need.
“(Palomino Valley Pet Rescue) got its non-profit status in October 2007,” Braunworth said. “It all started when I started working at the Humane Society. When we were at the old building when they were euthanizing animals, they would make a list and euthanize these animals one or two times a week and I had a problem with that.”
Braunworth still works at the Humane Society more than six hours a week.
“If they (the animals) are at risk to be killed, I usually just take them,” Braunworth said. “I help them work through it, I socialize them and get them to walk on the leash. They need the public to see them and how wonderful they are, and they need a second chance.”
Braunworth said that while she tried to run Palomino Valley Pet Rescue on her own for a while, she could not do it without the help of her volunteers and foster families that help socialize and get the animals ready for their new homes.
“I keep a hand full of animals that stay with me and the others are out in foster homes,” Braunworth said. “I have friends that keep the dogs in foster homes for me. It puts them in a home situation instead of a kennel. It makes it a bit easier for the transitions.”
In addition to always needing more foster homes, Braunworth has seen an increase in the number of pets being relinquished to rescue groups and shelters because of difficult economic times that many families are facing.
“A lot of people who need to leave their homes, because they’re losing their homes, they usually have some notice,” Braunworth said. “We ask them to give us some time to place postings on the (Pet Finder and Pet Harbor) Web sites.
“So far we’ve been really successful with finding homes for the dogs and the cats,” she added.
Braunworth said all the animals that are adopted from Palomino Valley Pet Rescue are current on their vaccinations and are also spayed or neutered before they are given to their new owners.
She also said the group has five kittens that will be ready for adoption very soon.
For more information on the vaccination clinics, or to adopt a pet from Palomino Valley Pet Rescue, visit palominovalleypetrescue.org.
Clinics are held at Discount Pet Food and Supplies at 520 E. Prater Way; Pettin’ Place at 1121 S. Wells Ave.; and Chloe’s Canine Cupboard at 150 E. Main Street, Suite 140 in Fernley.