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By Brian Lockhart
Dufferin Veterinary Hospital is celebrating 70 years of helping animals at their Orangeville location on Armstrong Street.
There are few small business that can make a claim to staying open that long, but since opening its doors in 1948, the clinic has never closed.
There as been a transition over the years as people come and go, but the Hospital as always remained.
When it opened seven decades ago, Armstrong Street was a dirt road but a major thoroughfare for the local mill.
Dr. Christine Harron is the current owner. She specializes in dogs, cats, and small animals.
The hospital has a separate service that treats larger farm animals.
“The hospital was established by Dr. Murray Dudgeon in 1948 and it's been going ever since,” Dr. Harron explained.
“We've seen pictures of the original building. This was on a one-lane dirt road. Dr. Dudgeon eventually sold to Dr. Joe Wilson and Dr. Wally Pugh. They're still practising but semi-retired. There have been other veterinarians that have come and gone. I'm the third owner.”
Originally the practice catered mainly to farmers who needed help with their livestock.
“It was a mixed animal practice,” said Dr. Harron. “They worked with horses, cows, dogs. People didn't put a lot of effort into their dogs back then. At one point in the 80's, things split so there's a large animal division and I'm part of the small animal division. I work with dogs and cats and what we call ‘pocket pets,' like bunnies and Guinea Pigs. Our other doctor, Rex Crawford, does the horses and cows and the large animals.”
The anniversary celebration brought out lot of visitors and of course some four-legged patients who, for this celebration, seemed to realize a trip to the vet this time was just for a party.
The Hospital is Dufferin County's longest running veterinary clinic and provides a full range of veterinary services.
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