Breaking News Bar
updated: 1/10/2014 5:36 PM

New low-cost vet clinic open in downtown Elgin

hello
Success - Article sent! close
  • Veterinarian Debra Rykoff, owner of 4 Life Animal Wellness Center in Hoffman Estates and founder of Fur Keeps Animal Rescue in Barrington Hills, has opened a low-cost clinic at 251 Center St. in Elgin.

       Veterinarian Debra Rykoff, owner of 4 Life Animal Wellness Center in Hoffman Estates and founder of Fur Keeps Animal Rescue in Barrington Hills, has opened a low-cost clinic at 251 Center St. in Elgin.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Veterinarian Debra Rykoff has opened a low-cost clinic Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin. She performed 13 operations, including this spaying of a female, Friday morning.

       Veterinarian Debra Rykoff has opened a low-cost clinic Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin. She performed 13 operations, including this spaying of a female, Friday morning.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Veterinarian Debra Rykoff snuggles with a rescue cat that will be spayed later Friday morning at her new low-cost clinic Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.

       Veterinarian Debra Rykoff snuggles with a rescue cat that will be spayed later Friday morning at her new low-cost clinic Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Thirteen cats wait to be neutered Friday at the new Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.

       Thirteen cats wait to be neutered Friday at the new Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • One of 13 kittens and cats in for spaying and neutering has a note attached to its carrier Friday at Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.

       One of 13 kittens and cats in for spaying and neutering has a note attached to its carrier Friday at Fox River Animal Wellness Center in Elgin.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Veterinarian Debra Rykoff snuggles with a rescue from Fur Keeps Animal Rescue that will be spayed later in the morning at her new low-cost vet clinic in Elgin.

       Veterinarian Debra Rykoff snuggles with a rescue from Fur Keeps Animal Rescue that will be spayed later in the morning at her new low-cost vet clinic in Elgin.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

 
 

Alone on Friday morning in her new vet clinic in downtown Elgin, Debra Rykoff worked quietly and methodically on her patients -- 13 mostly well-behaved cats that needed spaying, neutering and eye surgery.

Rykoff opened Fox River Animal Wellness Center at 251 Center St. in early December after a two-year process that included getting permits from the city of Elgin and the Fox River Water Reclamation District.

Order Reprint Print Article
 
Interested in reusing this article?
Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.
The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.
Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.

Contact information ( * required )

Success - request sent close

The clinic offers low-cost vet services, including vaccinations and physical exams.

All pet owners should spay or neuter their pets, said Rykoff, 54, the founder of Fur Keeps Animal Rescue in Barrington Hills and owner of 4 Life Animal Wellness Center in Hoffman Estates.

"Spaying and neutering doesn't take a lot, but it takes a little effort," she said. "We need to get the word out to people as much as possible that spaying and neutering is essential."

It's just as important to ensure that any free-ranging cats and dogs are spayed and neutered, too, she said. Anyone who notices pets alone outdoors should contact local animal rescue groups, she said.

"There is quite a released-cat issued in Elgin," she said. "When people lose their homes, they leave their animals, or drop them outside."

"The biggest thing people forget is, it's not the cat's fault if it's out there. Somebody did something stupid for that cat to end up out there."

Rykoff's clinic has stepped in to offer a much-needed service after Anderson Animal Shelter in South Elgin closed its low-cost spay/neuter program to the public in 2012, said Hillery Higginbotham of Hampshire.

Higginbotham is the president and co-founder of the animal rescue group Open Doors, which recently began using Rykoff's services in Elgin.

"We were traveling all the way to Fox Valley Animal Welfare League in North Aurora. That was the closest one to us (after Anderson closed its clinic)," she said. "Whenever you're preventing unwanted litters from being born, it helps with population control."

The clinic is currently open Tuesday mornings and Fridays, plus by appointment. Rykoff hopes to offer parking for clients by knocking down the existing garage, but that's a $10,000 expense that will have to wait for now, she said.

"You don't get into this business to buy a Mercedes. You do it because you want to and it's the right thing to do."

For more information, contact the clinic at (847) 429-2180.

Share this page
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.
    help here