Nature Research Center

Window on Animal Health

Window on Animal Health - photo by Chris AdamczykThe Window on Animal Health provides visitors a unique opportunity to peer into the world of veterinary medicine and to interact with vet staff, students, and interns working on real medical cases and performing real procedures including physical exams and surgeries. Visitors are able to participate in the process of training students to become veterinarians, and can view the entire space including a medical procedure room and clinical laboratory. The Window is equipped with 2-way audio between visitors and staff and offers video for visitors to view close-ups of microscopic images and medical procedures.

The Window on Animal Health serves as the hub for all medical management of the Museum’s diverse collections and as the presentation space for advanced programming offered to vet students, pre-veterinary college interns, and junior veterinary interns. Patients include unusual species such as reptiles, amphibians, fish, birds, small mammals and invertebrates.

Activities at the Window

  • Dr. Dan Dombrowski examines a sloth's earRoutine physical exams and procedures including wellness exams (Museum animals).
  • Special surgical procedures (Museum animals).
  • Medical treatments (Museum animals).
  • Water testing/ monitor (Museum aquatic systems).
  • Routine lab work (Museum animals) fecal floats, examine slides. 
  • Student and intern Veterinary Medical Rounds with discussion and review of assigned animal health topics (e.g. chytrid fungus, One Health, common diseases of wildlife, etc…).
  • Student and intern Veterinary Medical Rounds with discussion and review of assigned cases (e.g.  bullfrog with cancer, tree frog with eye injury).
  • Wildlife research surgical procedures (including implanting transmitters in snakes).
  • Working with research animals (e.g. taking swabs, blood/ tissue samples, clean procedures).
  • Review and training of vet students and interns focused on animal husbandry standards and techniques, medical procedures and techniques.
  • Vet students conducting research, collecting data for projects involving live animals.
  • Medical equipment and surgical instrument care and maintenance procedures.
  • Medical procedure preparation.
  • Program animal acclimation handling.
  • Animal behavior observations.
  • Select wildlife rehabilitation cases (turtle and snake).

Window on Animal Health - fishWindow on Animal Health Activities Schedule

Window on Animal Health activities will be scheduled live with public interaction for 2 hours per day

Monday-Friday: 1:30-3:30pm*

*Additional impromptu opportunities on the weekend and throughout each day for public observation and interaction at the Window will be regular, but unpredictable and unscheduled.


Chief Veterinarian: Dan Dombrowski

Curator of Veterinary Services: Brianna Nordstrom

Coordinator of Veterinary Services: Shane Christian