Becker Club is a Voice for Animals

Published on Thursday, April 12th, 2007

Animal Health Club group photoThe animal health Club at Becker College has experienced a recent surge in membership. With a full-time enrollment of more than 1,200 students, 60 students in animal health disciplines turned out for the club’s first meeting last fall, and roughly half regularly attend meetings and club activities.

The showcase for the Animal Health programs is the bi-annual Pet Fest, featuring canine obedience and agility demonstration performed by Becker students, and teaching animals on loan from Second Chance Animal Shelter in East Brookfield, Mass. Held in the fall and the spring, the latest Pet Fest is on Sunday, April 29, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the gymnasium on Becker’s Leicester campus. The teaching animals—dogs, cats, guinea pigs, rabbits, rats and mice—are available for adoption and shelter representatives are on hand to answer questions and take applications.

In an effort to encourage new pet owners to continue positive reinforcement training methods at home, the Animal Health Club is holding a fundraiser for its Enrichment Fund. With the proceeds, the club hopes to send every adopted teaching animal home with all the training and enrichment equipment that is used in the Becker College program.

In the spirit of the spring season, the fundraiser is titled, “It’s Raining Cats & Dogs.”  A donation to the Enrichment Fund represents a raindrop for the “garden,” which will be on display in the lobby of the Lenfest Animal Health Center, on Becker’s Leicester campus, throughout April. “We hope that the ‘raindrops’ will shower our current teaching animals with a bright future,” Axford enthused.

Advisor Victoria Axford may be partially responsible for keeping the club members engaged. In addition to advising duties, Axford works as a kennel supervisor at the Animal Health Center, volunteers for a spay/neuter assistance program at the Second Chance Animal Shelter and takes classes in Becker’s pre-vet program. Axford guides the club with a positive and energetic hand.

The club also brought ASPCA Day to Becker on Tuesday, April 10 and encouraged everyone to “Go Orange for Animals.” In support of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Mission Orange, students voluntarily submitted to "imprisonment," in an effort to collect money and spread awareness of the ASPCA’s mission to end animal cruelty.