The Veterinary Referral Center of Central Oregon is providing Service and Working Animals with free eye exams this May as part of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists® (ACVO) 14th National Service Animal Eye Exam Event, sponsored by Epicur Pharma®. After a hiatus due to COVID-19, the event is back at full strength this year, bringing together more than 260 board-certified ACVO Diplomates across approximately 200 cities in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and Hong Kong to provide free eye exams to Service and Working Animals in May.
The goal of the National Service Animal Eye Exam Event is to provide as many free screening exams as possible to eligible Service and Working Animals. The following types of Working or Service Animals may qualify as a guide, handicapped assistance, detection, military, search and rescue, and current, registered therapy animals – all of which selflessly serve the public. VRCCO is proud to participate in this philanthropic event.
HOW TO REGISTER FOR THE 2023 EVENT:
To qualify for a free eye exam, animals must be active, working formally trained Service, Working or formally trained therapy animals with written proof of training (and/or active registration for therapy only). Those currently enrolled in a formal Service or Working Animal training program may also qualify for an exam based on clinic availability. Qualification paperwork for the training and current working status of either the Service Animal or therapy animal must be provided to the clinic at the time of the exam, in addition to the registration number provided in the confirmation email. For information on what to expect during the exam, visit acvoeyeexam.org/qualifications-expectations.
Owners/handlers for the animal(s) must FIRST register the animal via an online registration form beginning April 1 at www.ACVOeyeexam.org. Registration ends on April 30. Once registered online, the owner/handler will receive a registration number and be allowed access to a list of participating ophthalmologists. Then, they may contact a specialist to schedule an appointment, which will take place in May. VRCCO requires participants to meet all event qualifications, pre-register at ACVO.org, then provide the assigned registration number over the phone when making an appointment. Times may vary depending on the facility and are filled on a first-come, first-served basis, so owners/handlers are encouraged to register and make appointments early.