Cedar Way Veterinary Clinic invited the community to celebrate the New Lenox office and its 10th anniversary July 15 at an open house.
Cedar Way Veterinary Clinic staff, joined by representatives from the Village New Lenox and New Lenox Chamber of Commerce, were some of those on hand to celebrate the milestone.
“I was here for seven years, and then [Dr. Maritess] Tinio came along,” said Dr. Frank Hoogeweg, who originally opened the clinic by himself. “We started off with no clients at all. I’ve been a vet now for 36 years.”
Prior to opening the New Lenox office, Hoogeweg — a Frankfort native — worked at Markham Animal Clinic, in Palos Park and in Frankfort.
“In July 2007, my dreams came to fruition, and here we are,” Hoogeweg said.
A ribbon cutting ceremony, face painting and office tours were some highlights from the open house.
He and Tinio decided to hold the open house as a way to celebrate the New Lenox office’s accomplishments and its staff.
“The clinic’s doing well,” Hoogeweg said. “[We have] wonderful staff here and just phenomenal, very caring staff. I think it was just time that we needed to show the public what we are all about. People only see what’s happening in the front here, as far as like in the exam rooms here, but there’s more to the clinic. So, this is an opportunity for people to come back and see where the surgery is.”
In the past, the clinic has partnered with animal shelters in the area to provide services.
“We are your best advocate,” Hoogeweg said, referring to how pets cannot advocate for themselves the way that people can.
The clinic typically services clients who are in need of exams, X-Rays, surgery and lab work.
About a year ago, the office started offering a grooming service to clients.
Predominantly, the office treats dogs and cats. Tinio also sees exotic animals — little pockets pets, such as guinea pigs and rats.
“I think people that have cats and dogs usually have something else,” Tinio said.
Tinio said it’s important that people are informed of the importance of annual checks for heartworm and ticks.
“Those are important,” she said. “Sometimes people just don’t really think about [it.] We try to bring that up, and we try to also bring up the importance of … the diseases the ticks can spread.”
The office comes equipped with a line of products they sell to help clients to stay on top of all the preventive measures.
“Heartworm disease is an issue in the area,” Hoogweg said. “Ticks are really bad this year. We’ve got great products for heartworm prevention… Heartworm treatment is super expensive, and heartworm prevention is the easiest.”
Hoogeweg stressed that contracting heartworm is an ailment that pets in the New Lenox area are sometimes highly susceptible to.
But it’s not just heartworm disease that exists as a concern for the clinic, either.
Cedar Way Veterinary is keeping other ailments on its radar with the presence of tick-borne diseases, the advancement of ticks from the south and Lyme disease.
The trouble is people don’t always seek the necessary preventive measures until it is too late, Hoogeweg said.
“What we’re trying to do here is prevention — the vaccines and everything that we discuss and talk [about,]” he said. “We do a lot of educating. That is probably our big thing is educating clients to properly care for pets.”
The first visit for new clients is always free. The same holds true for those who adopt a new pet from an animal shelter.
“[We’re] very proud of what we have,” Hoogeweg said.
For more information on Cedar Way Veterinary Clinic, visit www.cedarwayvet.com or call (815) 462-7387.