PUNXSUTAWNEY — Last Friday, the students at Parkview Elementary School were given a special treat, when Dr. Robert Altmeyer, who the students already knew as “Dr. Bob,” and his two helpers — his son Aaron and Therman the dog — delivered a presentation to them on taking care of their pets.
After some brief introductions, Altmeyer showed the students how to do a pet inventory and asked the students what kinds of pets they had.
Then, Altmeyer explained the two different types of examinations he does in his office, which is located between Rural Valley and Kittanning: preventative checkups to make sure pets aren’t sick and visits for animals that are sick.
Altmeyer also brought his special helper, Therman, up to the “examination table” in the front of the room and showed the students some things they and their parents could do to help make sure their pets stay healthy, including checking their eyes, ears and coats, making sure their teeth are in good shape and checking for the different types of bugs.
Dr. Bob also explained to the students the importance of pet vaccinations and made sure the students knew that it wasn’t safe to approach wild animals because of things like rabies.
Another area Altmeyer touched on was the importance of keeping items that pets could ingest out of their reach, as he said a majority of the surgeries he has to do with pets are extracting things they shouldn’t have eaten from their digestive systems.
Because a pet can’t tell its owner what’s wrong, Altmeyer said it’s important to take preventative measures.
Finally, Altmeyer brought some of the teachers forward to help “surgically remove” something that Therman shouldn’t have eaten from his stomach.
When the rock proved to be too big to pull from Therman’s stomach, he asked the students to stand and sing a round of “We Will Rock You” in an attempt to help shake the rock out of Therman’s stomach.
The surgery was a success, and all of the students were glad to send Therman home healthy.