Presidential inauguration slows business

Presidential inauguration slows business

The National Mall was packed Tuesday, but veterinary clinics weren't.
Jan 20, 2009
By staff

Even pets put their lives on hold for the inauguration of the 44th U.S. president, Barack Obama. With so much focus on the ceremony, veterinary clinics in Washington, D.C., aren’t experiencing business as usual today.

“It’s been slow,” says Kari Lodovico, a technician at Adams Morgan Animal Hospital on 18th Street NW, 14 blocks from the National Mall. “Nobody is going to take their animal to the veterinarian today. Everybody is too preoccupied with the inauguration.”

In fact, Lodovico had fielded just three phone calls as of 11:30 a.m, which is a fraction of the normal volume. She’s alone in the clinic today besides the sick pets, which a veterinarian came in earlier to check on. But if there’s an emergency, the doctors are standing by, ready to help.

Rich Cohen, clinic manager at Union Veterinary Clinic on 2nd Street NE, had scheduled just four appointments for inauguration day. The clinic would usually see about 30 clients and patients. “Even after the inauguration is over, we don’t expect much traffic,” he said.

Other D.C. clinics closed their doors altogether. CityPaws Animal Hospital on 14th Street NW and Capitol Hill Veterinary Clinic on 8th Street SW set up voicemail directing clients to emergency services for the day. Both clinics will be open regular hours tomorrow.