Local Business: Southside Veterinary Clinic offers local pet care | News

Southside Veterinary Clinic is emphasizing care and connections in the Oneonta animal-human community.

Owner-veterinarian Dr. Emma Inman launched the 7028 state Highway 23, Oneonta site on May 15. Inman works alongside Associate Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Grote, and both bring decades of experience to the practice.

“Dr. Grote has been in the area for over 12 years, and I’m born and raised Delaware County,” Inman said. “I graduated from Franklin Central School and went to SUNY Oneonta and was gone for about 10 years for schooling … then moved home in 2018. I graduated in 2013 from veterinary school, the University of Missouri.”

Inman said services offered are diverse, though Southside Veterinary caters exclusively to cats and dogs.

“We’re a small-animal general family practice,” she said. “We do all of your wellness visits, your sick visits, routine surgeries, dental procedures, X-rays, ultrasounds, cardiac workups and we have the capability of working closely with specialists if it requires transfer or referral.”

Inman said the focus on fostering connections distinguishes Southside Veterinary Clinic.

“For me, a big part of it is being a family,” she said. “And I think that’s an important factor for all of our staff, and I know it’s important for our clients, as well. A lot of people don’t know that the veterinary community has one of the highest suicide rates, so work-life balance has become a big focus in the veterinary community. People don’t realize that; they think it’s all puppies and kittens and, unfortunately, it’s not.

“We talked as a clinic, in depth, when doing training weeks before opening about what our goals were and what was important to us,” Inman continued. “And we all love our jobs, but we needed to make it sustainable. Mental health was a big thing for that, and making sure clients knew where we were coming from. We want to help everybody, and we really want them to know who we are when they’re walking in the door. Everybody in the building loves their job and we all love getting to see the dogs and cats and, when you’re in a small clinic like us, it’s nice to get that personal relationship, especially with puppies and kittens, and get to see them grow over the years and really create that human-animal bond. And it’s not just the pets; we love our clients, too, and we have some really wonderful clients. We have clients … and they end up coming in with their toddler and they don’t want to be here, but we’re all moms and it’s fun to see the technician take the toddler to go play while the vet services the patient. We get it, and we’re in that phase of life, and it’s nice to do life with the client and be able to support them. It’s that small-town feel of, you know who’s walking in the front door and they know who’s sitting at the front desk. You can just tell they appreciate you and your staff, and it’s a mutual feeling.”

That rapport, paired with industry-wide shortages, Inman said, has created a varied and growing clientele.

“It’s been really supportive and great getting to see familiar faces, but it’s also been fun getting to see new faces from people that are looking for a change,” she said. “Our area is in drastic need of veterinarians small and large, and it’s got that family feel. We have people coming from Stamford, clients from Brooklyn that stay up here, someone from Connecticut with a summer home, but a lot of people are probably Sidney through Oneonta, Franklin and Otego area, all the way out to Stamford, Schenevus and I know we have people from Maryland, so it’s a huge range and it’s the sheer fact that we don’t have enough vets in the area. The number of pets has increased so much during COVID and post-COVID that the veterinary community can’t keep up.

“So, our demographic is fun because it is a huge variety,” Inman continued. “We have everything from college students to young adults owning their first dog or cat, all the way to patients we’ve been seeing for years. Dr. Grote has clients she’s been seeing for 12-plus years, and that’s fun. The variety is wonderful and every appointment is not a cookie-cutter appointment; it’s great to have variety throughout your day, with the owners as well as the pets.”

Inman, said that Southside Veterinary is “absolutely” welcoming new patients and she hopes to continue establishing clients and expanding the business.

“Our plans are to enjoy many years to come with our clients and all their pets, especially over this next year,” she said. “Long term for us, we would like to grow a little bit and play around with the idea of — we are in a very small building that cannot sustain us long term — eventually building a new hospital right here onsite.”

For more information or to schedule an appointment, visit southsideveterinary.com, call 607-441-3070 or find “Southside Veterinary Clinic” on Facebook.

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