e program has stagnated because it would require three extra staff positions. Students would require closer supervision because shelter dogs would not be eventually euthanized like the purchased dogs are.
OSU pays $139 per dog, Shutt said. Shelter dogs would be free.
Animals used at the 28 veterinary colleges nationwide come from a variety of sources, said Mike Chaddock, deputy director of the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges. The most common sources for live animals are breeders, shelters and pet owners.
Professors must balance education with animal welfare, Chaddock said. Many teachers will use diagrams, cadavers or models if possible, but sometimes working with a living animal is the only way to train students.
"I would equate it to human procedures,” he said. "There are some procedures we’d hope our doctor learned to do on a real patient.”
All veterinarians — whether they’re working with animals or students — work within the veterinarian oath, Chaddock said. One of the pillars is to relieve animal suffering.
"We want to make sure that everybody treats these animals in a humane and proper way,” he said. "We believe our schools do.”
Working with live animals gives students invaluable training, said veterinarian and OSU graduate Rory Stricklin of Wewoka.
"It’s just one step forward to becoming a better practitioner,” Stricklin said. "They show you what needs to be done and keep you from making the same mistakes they did.”