CORAL SPRINGS, FL – When ailing cats and dogs come out of surgery, Sarah Tingle is there to greet them with medicine, blankets, and lots of love.
“They love to be massaged,” said the veterinary nurse at Coral Springs Animal Hospital on University Drive.
These days, Tingle is also giving extra love to the animals’ owners.
To prevent the spread of coronavirus, her hospital is keeping animal owners from visiting their pets who are admitted for treatment. So Tingle takes it upon herself to send owners text message updates, showing their cats, dogs or other pets in the recovery rooms and letting them know their pets’ status.
“The owners really appreciate that,” she said.
She works 13-hour shifts, three days a week, in the hospital’s intensive care unit, caring for two to seven animals at a time. Since the outbreak, her work hasn’t changed much, other than social distancing from other staff. But at the hospital’s intake area, she said animal owners are required to stay away from the area while their pets are evaluated to determine if they need to be admitted.
With 25 years of experience in caring for animals, Tingle, 45, has all the trademarks of a veterinary nurse: the capabilities to work long hours, administer medicine, and offer compassion when it’s needed most.
“I see a lot of people on their worst day,” she said, referring to pet owners who have had to say goodbyes to their ailing pets.
She’s loved animals since she was a child growing up in Plantation and knew she would work in veterinary medicine.
It’s the perfect job for her because, as her family always tells her, she’s got the temperament for it – the ability to give everything she’s got to the care of an animal, no matter if it survives a sickness or injury.
Right now, she’s focused on her job and tries not to think about the world outside the hospital where many humans are sick or in fear of what’s to come.
“These are hard times, but we’re all chipping in to help one another,” she said.