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75 years of animal care

Animal Hospital celebrates milestone anniversary

Dr. Ronald Scharf with Hallie, an Animal Hospital of Niskayuna patient. The practice is celebrating 75 years of business.

Dr. Ronald Scharf with Hallie, an Animal Hospital of Niskayuna patient. The practice is celebrating 75 years of business. Submitted photo

— Not too many veterinarian hospitals can say they’ve served man’s best friend for 75 years and counting.

The Animal Hospital of Niskayuna is marking its 75th year of operation as a small animal veterinary hospital. Ken Friderici originally established the business in 1936 as the Friderici Animal Hospital, and Dr. Ronald Scharf bought the veterinary practice in 1993 from Dr. Art Friderici, who was the original owner’s nephew.

The hospital primarily serves dogs and cats and offers a variety of services. Also, it is a solo practice, so pets and their owners become familiar with Dr. Scharf.

Scharf, a graduate of Cornell University, said it is “very unusual” for an animal hospital to operate for 75 years.

“There is very few animal hospitals in the country that could say that,” Scharf said. “The biggest thing that would attest to how progressive my predecessors were … is being accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association.”

The Animal Hospital has been accredited since 1946, and Scharf said he’s continued the accreditation since he took over. The Animal Hospital of Niskayuna is one of nine veterinary hospitals nationwide that have achieved and maintained accredited status for 65 years, said Scharf.

He said accreditation is a “rigorous and month-long” process to make sure over 900 AAHA standards are met. Even though he’s done it many times, he said it is never easy, but is worth the effort.

“It is a good reinforcing thing for my staff so they understand why we do all the things we do,” he said.

During the 1930s, it was common for farm animal veterinarians to treat dogs and cats on the side after treating cows, horses and other barnyard beasts.

“It was kind of like an afterthought doing small animals way back then,” he said.

On top of the quality animal care provided, Scharf credited his success to his making sure the pet owner concerns and needs are also met.

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