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New digs to provide better pet care

Mt. Hood Pet Medical opens a new location


by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: LAURA KNUDSON  - Tom Van Meter, owner of Pet Medical, and RaChelle Pickard, head technician, conduct surgery in their new location.

It’s hard to miss the big red paw print when driving past Cascade Plaza on Burnside, where the paint only just dried in the new location for Mt. Hood Pet Medical.

Doors opened to clients and animals Monday, June 30, at 2066 N.E. Burnside Road after relocating from its previous space on Powell Boulevard.

Dr. Tom Van Meter, veterinarian and owner of Pet Medical, said there are no drawbacks to the new office. “We’re open and everything is functioning.”

Visitors can now expect a more intimate experience with staff as the new set-up allows for easier contact with receptionists.

Coffee is on the house and treats are complimentary for the four-legged visitors.

The space is functional and features multiple exam and surgical rooms that make the facility’s state-of-the-art equipment more accessible than before.

“We have a lot of computers and medical technology,” Van Meter said. “We got to put outlets wherever we needed them.” Because of this, patient monitors now mounted on the wall create better work flow.

“We’re going to be able to practice better medicine,” Van Meter said.

The clinic also aims to make the overall experience as comfortable as possible. For most of us, the hospital can be a scary place, and it’s no different for sick pets.

Cats will now be in a separate area away from dogs, making their visit less stressful.

Pet Medical also understands the close connection between families and their pets. One unique benefit the new space offers is a quiet, comfortable room, so that when the time comes, families can say goodbye to their pets in private.

The completed space also will feature graphics of people and animals that will cover six windows and two doors, allowing for more privacy near the exam and surgical rooms.

“Some people are pretty squeamish about that,” Van Meter said.

As a result of the ample street view, curious customers have been poking their heads in.

“We’ve had a lot of people come by and say they didn’t even know we were out at the other location,” Van Meter said.  

Instead of pursuing a remodel at the old location, Van Meter jumped at the prospect of a location with easier access for the public.

Better visibility is a major plus, he said.

While finishing touches are still being applied, the top priority has remained “taking care of both the pet and the client,” said Corrie Sweet, a receptionist. by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: LAURA KNUDSON  - Staff are sill settling into their new office. The open space makes greeting clients easier.

Proof of that can be seen in visiting Max, a friendly Shih Tzu pup who received plastic surgery on his face to prevent skin from rubbing near his eyes.

The love of animals is what got Van Meter started in a career to which he has given 35 years. “It is a very fulfilling profession. You help the pet, but you also help the people.”

Practice administrator Marcia Van Meter, Tom’s wife, said the staff has put a lot of effort into pulling the relocation together.

“It’s a lot of work,” she said. “But it’s very worthwhile.”

If you go

Who: Mt. Hood Pet Medical.

Where: 2066 N.E. Burnside Road.

What: Full service veterinary hospital, including diagnostic procedures, dental care and more.

Grand opening will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, July 12. Hot dogs, soft drinks, balloon animals, door prizes and more.

Call: 503-666-4942.



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