Getting affordable health care is still a struggle for many in the 99%, but for pets in Zuccotti Park, it's free. Veterinarians who support Occupy Wall Street offer free check-ups for pets in the park once a week. "I supported OWS right from the beginning," Dr. Konstantine Barsky tells the Daily News. "On the second night I realized there were a lot of animals here. I figured the best way I could participate would be giving my skills." Treating patients for pepper spray remains the same for most animals, regardless of species.
"It's reassuring to know you can take your pets here," one protester who got his dog, Genevieve, looked at by Dr. Barsky. "As things get worse in the economy, we have access to less and less health care, and the same goes for our pets." Barsky, a vet at Hope Veterinary Clinic in Brooklyn, treated ten animals on Friday, including two albino rats named Klepto and Bella, and a kitten named Munchie.
Munchie happens to be the same "Anarkitty" mentioned by a New York Post reporter who recently braved life and limb to stay with the shockingly uncouth protesters. "I don't want her to be meowing for me at the door, bored," Munchie's owner Mary Baker tells the paper. "She's my sidekick. It's never just me, myself and I. It's me and Munchie."
All animals will be treated, regardless of whether they belong to a protester or not. "We believe it's counterproductive to pass judgment on homeless people or traveling people who keep pets," Baker says. "A lot of these animals would be dead had it not been for the homeless people who took them in." A vet's assistant said the volunteers are "doing a lot of flea and tick treatments. The parasites from outside are going to be looking for warm bodies." Unless they're the certain breed of parasite that has a home on the Riviera.