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Animal lover at heart

New Eagle Fern Veterinary Hospital animal doctor joined medical team in August
by: Barbara Adams, Eagle Fern Veterinary Hospital Dr. Rebecca Jester looks over a kitten that was recently rescued and treated for burns on the pads of her feet.

Animals have been a big part of Rebecca Jester's life ever since she was a young girl growing up in Nanuet, New York. She had a pet rat, geckos, rabbits, dogs, cats, various kinds of birds, and a hamster. It was when the hamster had babies, proceeded to dine on one, then was later abused by a grown offspring that Jester knew what she wanted to do when she grew up.

'That's how I was exposed to veterinary medicine, and why I wanted to pursue it,' she said.

On Aug. 16 she became the newest member of the medical team at Eagle Fern Veterinary Hospital in Estacada.

Before that, she practiced at the Animal Medical Clinic in Portland, where she worked for one year.

She received her undergraduate degree in animal sciences, with a pre-vet option, from Oregon State University. On May 29, 2005, she graduated from the OSU veterinary medical school with a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine (DVM). During her years at OSU, she spent time working at a horseback riding program for handicapped individuals called Saddle Soars, and for the Chintimini Wildlife Rehabilitation Center working with 'whatever people dropped off,'-mostly wild animals like raccoons, birds of prey, squirrels, opossums, little birds, and, occasionally, deer and bobcats.

Jester, 26, works four 10-hour days each week at Eagle Fern. Next spring, she plans to take an animal acupuncture class in Colorado, where she will become a certified acupuncturist. 'I'll do dogs and cats, and probably some horses, too. I like the naturopathic approach-treating the animal as a whole, letting the body heal itself,' she said. 'It's good for chronic arthritis, to alleviate pain.'

Eagle Fern Veterinary Hospital is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. To schedule an appointment, or for more information, call 503-630-3538.