Caring for the Pet Community in Mexico City

We’ve heard many great stories from across our network of how people have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, and how our students and faculty have responded. But it’s not just people that the Laureate community is supporting.

Our latest Laureate Heroes, Claudia Jamaica and her team at Universidad del Valle de México’s (UVM) veterinary hospital, have continued to care for their pet patients, including stray animals, since the virus outbreak in Mexico and the subsequent closure of the hospital in March.

Veterinary students who had been working with stray animals chose to take their patients home to care for them during the hospital’s closure. These animals were in a stable condition and only required basic care until the time came that they could be adopted. If any of the animals require medicine, Claudia delivers it to the student’s home and remains in close contact with them, to determine the health status of each animal.

UVM’s 25 other pet patients are currently being housed at five animal hospitals across Mexico City, with the university’s veterinarians regularly visiting to treat the animals.

Claudia and her team continue to look for ways to improve the services offered to pets and their owners during the COVID-19 crisis. A mobile app is currently being developed that will allow the veterinarians to communicate with animal owners on how to monitor and care for their sick pets.

UVM’s veterinary hospital cares for cats, dogs, parrots, iguanas and wildlife and offers services including surgery, rehabilitation and recovery, laboratory, autopsy, imaging and radiology while delivering practical learning experiences for students studying veterinary medicine, zootechnics and other related programs.

Claudia was responsible for establishing the veterinary hospital in 2014, and continues to oversee its operation. It’s the first veterinary hospital in Mexico to host an animal blood bank, which is managed by the students, and provides blood to other veterinary hospitals and clinics. It has 100 registered blood donors.

Claudia has seen the hospital expand over the past six years. “We’re now a referral hospital, with 50% of our animals referred to us by other hospitals in the region when a case is too complex for them to attend to,” Claudia said.

The veterinary hospital will feature in a reality television show in September, featuring 90 of its animal cases, and its animal shelter will appear in a television documentary series.

Claudia hopes the exposure will lead to greater awareness of the hospital and its eventual reopening.

“The hospital has become what it is today because of our excellent team of veterinarians and students, and we can’t wait to be back there working again,” Claudia concluded.

Thank you Claudia and your team for the wonderful care you’ve given your patients during these trying times. You are another great example what it means to be a Laureate Hero.