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SPCA welcomes first full-time vet

Dr. Robert Edwards

Dr. Robert Edwards

One year after opening an in-house clinic, the Fredericksburg Regional SPCA is expanding to full-time service, Executive Director Debra Joseph said.

A new full-time veterinarian will start Aug. 4 to launch the expanded service.

Dr. Robert Edwards is a 2012 graduate of the Virginia–Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine located at Virginia Tech.

He currently works at a private veterinary practice in a town near Pittsburgh.

Edwards said his interest in Fredericksburg was prompted by his girlfriend, who serves with the Army’s veterinary service and is transferring to Fort Belvoir in Fairfax County in September.

He said he looks forward to working for a nonprofit that has a goal of controlling the pet population.

The Fredericksburg Regional SPCA is a no-kill shelter located on Courthouse Road in Spotsylvania County.

It opened the Raymond K. and Krystyna K. Locke Spay and Neuter Clinic inside the facility in June 2013.

During the first nine months of operation, the staff performed 745 spay and neuter surgeries, Joseph said.

The clinic operated two days per week from June 2013 through March, when the first veterinarian, who had been commuting from West Virginia, resigned.

One day per week the veterinarian addressed the needs of SPCA animals. The other day the staff provided service to the public.

With limited funding, Joseph said she has applied for grants to expand to full-time clinic operations but will also continue to depend on donations.

A significant portion of the cost will be covered by fees charged to the public for services provided to their pets.

The clinic will offer the public spay and neuter service for cats and dogs on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Vaccines will be offered on Fridays.

The clinic also will offer routine services such as nail trims, ear cleaning, deworming and flea and tick treatments.

People need to make appointments, which are being taken now for the August start.

Joseph said she is also considering offering quarterly rabies clinics on Saturdays.

Expansion to a full-time clinic is an exciting step for the local SPCA because it will increase the opportunity to pursue its top priority of controlling the pet population through spaying and neutering, Joseph said.

She said it also will help people of limited financial resources obtain basic veterinary services for their pets.

Pamela Gould: 540/735-1972


The Fredericksburg Regional SPCA will begin running its in-house clinic full time in August. People can begin making appointments now for public services that will be provided on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

For details on services, fees and to make an appointment, go to, or call 540/898-1500.