NORTHFIELD CENTER "It seems as though I was always meant for this place," said Dr. Kelly Kontur, DVM, of taking over the Summit Animal Hospital in Northfield Center.
"The deed to this place was signed on my birth date," Kontur said. "Dr.(Margaret) Cumming signed the paper for the practice the day I was born."
Cumming bought the practice in April 1989 from another veterinarian and built a kennel on the back of the building. After more than 27 years owning the business, she said she is scaling back her hours. She plans to spend more time with her daughter, who lives in Pennsylvania.
Cumming also owns Hillcrest Animal Hospital in Richmond Heights, and is staying on there full-time. Previously she split her time between the two practices. She said she has enjoyed her time in Northfield Center.
"It's been a great experience being in the community and watching it grow so much," Cumming said. "Northfield Center is a nice community."
Cumming said she planted flowers around the clinic and even placed second in a garden club competition last year.
Cumming said she remembers when Kontur brought her cat in as a child and ended up working for her at the age of 14 as a kennel associate.
Kontur joined the practice as a veterinarian in September 2014 after earning her degree from The Ohio State University. Kontur had previously gained experience with Akron Referral Veterinary and the ASPCA in New York City. She also participated in spay and neuter clinics for Capital Area Humane Society in Hilliard.
Cumming said she knew the transition would be smooth because Kontur is a life-long Northfield resident.
"Clients are in good hands," Cumming said. "She is very progressive and is up on the latest equipment. I know she will make the clinic grow as the community grows."
Kontur said she is excited to be at the helm and has already made some minor changes including the brand of food the practice carries, and more flea and tick treatment options. She said other changes will be gradual and to streamline business. Kontur said clients will kept apprised of any changes via Facebook.
As far as services, Kontur said the practice will remain a full-service animal hospital, offering a variety of services including: same day appointments, general surgeries, digital radiology, diagnostic ultrasound, laser surgeries and in-house blood work. Kontur said there is an orthopedic surgeon who comes in for procedures to be more convenient for pet owners. Boarding and limited grooming services are also still available to clients, though she said she is searching for a part-time groomer.
"We do grooming on a limited basis," she said. "It's mostly for medical purposes, but we do offer grooming to clients."
Kontur said clients can expect the same level of service they have come to expect at Summit Animal Hospital.
"Dr. Cumming was an excellent diagnostician," Kontur said. "I will be running the practice with the same patient standards she put in place."
Clients can also expect to continue to see the same familiar faces as no personnel changes are planned and even the office cat, Tawny, is remaining with the practice.
"Tawny will be getting daily treats per Dr. Cumming's instructions," Kontur said with a smile.
Kontur's family is from the Nordonia Hills area and her father also owns a local business, CPK Construction.
For more information on Summit Animal Hospital, see www.summitanimalhosp.com.
Briana Barker: 330-541-9432