They pulled up to the house and ran inside. He was laying on the floor, unable to move. Carefully they picked him up and led him to the ambulance. Once inside they sped off to the Northside Veterinary Hospital.
According to Northside Veterinarian, Tracy Trussell, in November the clinic purchased an ambulance once used for humans, but now tit is used to help cats, dogs and other pets in the Shawnee area.
"It is an actual ambulance...We have converted it with some cages and such and we still have some more conversion stuff we want to do to it but it is set up to be a patient transport," Trussell said.
Currently the ambulance is used for animals that are too sick or big to get in their owner's car.
"We want to expand to where it's almost kind of a mini full mobile clinic. We're looking at putting some lab machinery in there so we can do blood work and stuff out on site," Trussell said. "We're getting it stocked so we can do service calls of different sorts and just make it a mobile extension of us."
The vehicle also allows for Trussell and other veterinarians to mildly treat animals who can't leave their homes or location.
"People that just physically can't get the animal to the clinic is one of the biggest things we have for now as well as a convenience factor," Trussell said.
Trussell will give animals their necessary vaccinations, gather information and take it back to the clinic's lab.
To utilize the transport, clients just need to call the clinic's number and driver Nicki Williams will come retrieve their pets.
"Somebody calls and we send out Nicki...to go pick up the animals. We can bring them back here and do whatever we need and then take them back home," Trussell said.
Williams is working on getting her technician license and said she loves driving the ambulance.
"I like being out in the community with the people and I think (the ambulance) is going to be a big help especially for our older clients who can't drive. It's just nice to give the community a different option," she said.
Since the vehicle has been running, Trussell said there have been 75-80 transports by the ambulance which is about 10 animals a week.
"People have responded fairly well. It seems not everybody is fully aware yet of what we do with (the ambulance) and what our capabilities are and what we plan for it," Trussell said.
The vet explained he didn't think there was a need for a service such as the ambulance but over time changed his mind.
"I didn't thing it was (important) initially. Where we started coming around to the the idea was before we bought the ambulance, we were getting two to three calls a week where people just physically couldn't get their animal in," he said.
After reviewing how high the need was, Trussell said he eventually decided to get the ambulance.
At first the clinic was planning on purchasing a large van but Trussell said he came across the ambulance on Craig's List and knew it was perfect.
In addition to the ambulance, Northside offers overnight and extended boarding, a general grooming parlor, preventive care, generalized medicine, surgical services and dental care. Trussell said the clinic has around 12,000 to 14,000 active patients.
Now Northside is the only veterinary hospital in the state with an ambulance solely for animals and Trussell said they hope to expand it in the future.
He explained the clinic plans to add a blood machine, microscope, refrigerator or cooling system and a type of exam table.
"I just think it's neat we have an ambulance. It's different. It has everything we need...when we bought it it was set up close enough that all you would need to do is load up supplies and your electronics," he said.
Though they would like to have more than one ambulance, Trussell said the clinic is just looking to see what they can do with their current vehicle.
"I don't know that we are even aware of what we can do and what our abilities are going to be with it. We're just going to find a little more as we go," he said.
To use the ambulance clients can call the clinic's office number at (405) 273-3700 and pay a $20 fee.