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Dogs and cats line up for shot at good health in Beach Park

Huge turnout Beach Park's first ever low-cost pet clinic with vaccinations microchipping Public Works building. | Mark Ukena~For Sun-Times Media

Huge turnout at Beach Park's first ever low-cost pet clinic with vaccinations and microchipping at the Public Works building. | Mark Ukena~For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: November 23, 2012 6:13AM

The line at the inaugural Beach Park low-cost pet clinic on Saturday was like a dog show. There were collies and coon hounds, pit bulls and poodles and mixed breed canines.

There also were many people with cats and kittens in carrying cages.

Initiated by Beach Park Trustee Regina Miller, the low-cost pet clinic, run by Lake County Animal Care and Control, featured vaccines and micro-chipping at affordable prices to help pet owners comply with county and municipal codes.

Veterinarian Dr. Lewis Seidenberg, who has been with the LCHD animal control facility for 15 years, administered the vaccines.

At least a half-hour before the event, cars began lining up along Glendale Road near the village public-works facility where the event took place.

“Animal control said it was the largest pet clinic they’ve had so far,” said village Trustee Linda Sittig who volunteered to help at the event. An estimate by officials tallied between 300-350 people and their pets, with the majority from Beach Park.

“(Linda Sittig) and I both thought it would be a great opportunity for our village residents, especially in these trying economic times,” said Miller, noting it was Sittig who made her first aware of the program. “And it’s a good way to keep pets and families protected.”

“It was well worth the wait, and the pet owners in line were so good. They gave enough room to each other,” said Beach Park resident Holly Brisson who waited in line 90 minutes with her husband Terry and their young Rottweiler.

Sittig, an animal lover who has horses, dogs, cats, ducks and chickens, said she was grateful to Miller for working to bring the event to town. “I also wish to thank the Beach Park residents who participated,” she said.

Also at the event was Lake County board member Diane Hewitt, who is an animal lover herself. Hewitt has three dogs and noted that her bichon Maltese, Cindy, who was viciously attacked by a loose dog in February, is now doing fine.

Hewitt said she has utilized the services of the county’s low-cost pet clinics for her own dogs. “With the economy the way it is, and people losing their jobs and homes, a lot of times they can’t afford to take their pets to the vet, so this is a great alternative,” she said.

Dawn and James Combs of Beach Park agreed. “It only cost us $40 for everything,” said Dawn, referring to Watson, a 4-year-old dachshund-mix who received vaccines plus a micro-chip.

For Wanda and John Willard of Wadsworth, the program was very helpful. The couple owns four papillons and brought all of them for shots. “We’ve been taking the dogs to other health-department clinics, usually in Round Lake,” said John. “It saves us good money, especially when you have four,” added Wanda.

Two-year-old chihuahua Cocoa was perched atop a cat crate that contained a kitten called Honey. The pet owners, Della and Frank Diaz of Waukegan, remarked how they were happy to find out about the event. “The price is definitely affordable and that’s why we’re here,” said Della.

For more information about upcoming low-cost pet clinics, contact the LCHD Animal Care and Control facility at (847) 949-9925.

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