Biz Buzz Monday: Dubuque veterinary clinic opens in expanded location

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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from the tri-states. In addition to this update from a Dubuque veterinary clinic, we will share additional developments in Tuesday’s edition.

Veterinarian Katie Merkes strives to treat all animals that come through the doors of GoodLife Integrative Veterinary Care as if they were her own.

“We really pride ourselves on having personal connections with our clients and their dogs and treating (the animals) like an extension of our family,” she said. “They might not live with us in our houses, but this building really is a sort of extension of my home.”

And that home just got a lot bigger.

GoodLife last week opened its new clinic at 198 Cedar Cross Road in Dubuque. The 5,000-square-foot building is double the size of the clinic’s previous location on Hillcrest Road and is equipped with several treatment rooms, a rehabilitation space and expanded canine fitness center.

The office offers both traditional and holistic veterinary care, Merkes explained, to treat a wide variety of ailments in dogs and cats.

She also offers in-home euthanasia services.

Some of the clinic’s more holistic treatment options include animal acupuncture, chiropractic care and laser therapy.

Those practices could be done independently or in conjunction with more traditional treatment options, Merkes said.

“Unfortunately, you do run into cases where you run out of (traditional) medicines or run out of options,” Merkes said. “Being able to add in integrative therapies in those instances can literally be lifesaving.”

Merkes first opened the practice as River Valley Veterinary Services in 2014 and operated as a mobile clinic.

She later rebranded to GoodLife Integrative Veterinary Care and opened her first brick-and-mortar location on Hillcrest Road in 2021.

Demand continued to grow, Merkes said, and it was clear additional space was needed to keep pace with the clinic’s growing clientele — particularly for the clinic’s rehabilitation and canine fitness services.

“Canine fitness is a good option for healthy dogs that want to stay that way,” Merkes said. “They come here and have something fun to do for the day. It’s a lot of individual attention for the dogs, as well as some strength training and core engagement.”

The new location has expanded capacity to meet those needs, she said, allowing the clinic to add a second underwater treadmill and expand the area used for canine fitness.

A part-time dog groomer also has joined the team.

GoodLife Integrative Veterinary Care is open by appointment from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The clinic can be reached at 563-590-0145 or online at