Capable and Caring, An Outstanding Veterinarian


We first became aware of New Frontier in 1988 when we bought our house on Driftwood Court and learned that our neighbor was Dr. Bill Prevatt. At the time, New Frontier consisted of Bill driving all over Cochise County in a motor home, which was his office and lab all in one. New Frontier came to you rather than the reverse.

Not too long after that, we acquired our first pet, a black lab which we named Jessie. She turned out to be a real pistol! She absolutely loved being mischievous. We decided that she needed a playmate so we acquired a companion, Mr. Duke, for her. Someone told us that having a litter of puppies would calm Jessie down, so she and Mr. Duke blessed us with ten puppies. By this time, we were very familiar with our next door neighbor. Dr. Prevatt was a wonderful vet and also gave us tons of good advice along with tending to the medical care of our black labs – all twelve of them. We did manage to place three of the pups in good homes, but in the end kept seven of Jessie’s brood.

Dr. Prevatt quickly outgrew his mobile vet clinic and began construction on a permanent facility and moved his practice there when it was finished. He looked after the health of our nine labs until he decided to leave Sierra Vista and move to the Phoenix area. During his years as our vet, we lost Jessie and one of her pups.

We then met Dr. Pam Drake and turned the medical needs of our dogs over to her. It was a very wise choice. She cared for our remaining seven labs. As time passed and we lost more black labs, we added two more labs, a yellow, Nicky, and a chocolate, Sophie.

As but two examples of the outstanding work of Dr. Drake, I’ll mention our one and only yellow lab to date, Nicky, and our first German Shorthair Pointer (GPS) Gracie. We purchased Nicky from a local breeder and what a magnificent dog he was. However, he suffered from a number of medical issues. First he blew out a knee, requiring surgery to correct. Dr. Drake referred us to a specialist in Tucson who took care of the problem. Then, he came down with a throat problem which was life threatening. Again, Dr. Drake referred us to a specialist in Tucson for surgical treatment. Dr. Drake cared for Nicky through thick and thin, and we are convinced that her care alone gave Nicky at least two or three added comfortable years of life.

Little Gracie came to us by way of Dr. Drake unexpectedly. She belonged to another of Dr. Drake’s clients and when she was about three months old, they decided they could not keep her. Dr. Drake called us and arranged for us to meet Gracie. One look was all it took and she came home with us. Things around the house really changed with her in charge and haven’t been the same since. After a year or two, Gracie started acting very strangely. Her symptoms were unlike anything we had ever seen before. Naturally, we took her to see Dr. Drake who tentatively diagnosed her illness as Myasthenia Gravis, but referred us to a specialist in Tucson to confirm her suspicions. We had never heard of the disease before, let alone seen it in one of our pets. The specialist in Tucson confirmed the diagnosis and began talking about her expected quality of life, indicating we should consider putting her down. That was not something that we wanted to hear, so we took her back home and put her under Dr. Drake’s loving care. She developed a treatment plan and we’re delighted to report that Gracie is still going strong and continuing to run the house and our other three dogs. She shows absolutely no signs of slowing down either. We believe that had it not been for Dr. Drake’s skill, knowledge, and caring, we would most likely have lost her years ago. We also believe that to be true with several other dogs of ours.

We have now been with New Frontier for well over twenty years, and short of some potential specialized treatment that isn’t available there, wouldn’t think of going anywhere else. We currently have three German Shorthair Pointers and our newest addition, a blue Weimaraner, being cared for by New Frontier. All the staff there are exceptionally capable and caring, and most of all, Dr. Pam Drake is a truly outstanding veterinarian.

Makena Tolman