Archived News

Veterinary School Recognized for Promoting Animal Welfare
in Teaching and Community Service

May 5, 2005

Spayday VolunteersAssociate Dean Jan Ilkiw and the Mercer Veterinary Clinic for the Homeless at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine received "Humane-itarian Awards" from the Sacramento SPCA on May 4, 2005. According to the SPCA, these awards "honor selfless individuals and businesses that make a 'pawsitive' difference in the lives of animals in the Sacramento region."

As associate dean of Academic Programs since 2003, Dr. Jan Ilkiw, a "Humane-itarian of the Year" nominated by United Animal Nations, has developed innovative ways to provide essential skills training to veterinary students. Dr. Ilkiw also oversees curriculum, course scheduling, and the development of instructional software. She is working with faculty to introduce a new elective in small animal surgery in which students will learn to perform common veterinary procedures on pound animals. In addition to building clinical skills, students in this program will help injured or ill shelter animals and help find homes for the abandoned pets.

Besides her dedication and work with students, Dr. Ilkiw has been a supporter of spay/neuter programs. In 2004 and 2005, she coordinated hundreds of School of Veterinary Medicine volunteers who performed almost 600 spay/neuter procedures as part of the Sacramento Area Animal Coalition's Spay Day, an annual effort to improve animal welfare and end pet overpopulation. A specialist in anesthesiology, Dr. Ilkiw directed all aspects of the process to keep the animals safe and in good health from intake through recovery.

The Mercer Veterinary Clinic for the Homeless, recipient of the "Veterinary Service Award," is a non-profit, student-run organization providing free veterinary care for pets of the homeless. The clinic meets one Saturday morning a month in Sacramento where volunteer veterinarians and students provide examinations, vaccinations and treatments. Students also distribute leashes, flea products and pet food. 

Mercer volunteers also work to reduce pet overpopulation by counseling clients and arranging free spay-neuter surgeries. Students estimate that about 200 animals have been spayed or neutered in the past year through this program. In 1998, the Mercer Veterinary Clinic for the Homeless received the AVMA Humane Award from the American Veterinary Medical Association.

The Mercer Acute Care Network also earned a "Veterinary Service Award" for connecting Mercer Clinic clients with local veterinarians who provide services for sick or injured animals. 
Spayday Volunteers 

The Mercer Veterinary Clinic for the Homeless welcomes new volunteers and donations of cash or supplies.
Mercer Veterinary Clinic
P.O. Box 297
Davis, CA 95617
530-752-1143 (message line)