NewsHillsborough County


Dentist office donates food to animals in need every time they receive a new patient

Posted at 4:20 PM, Apr 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-06 16:20:31-04

WESTCHASE, Fla. — The next time you go to a dentist, you could be helping a sheltered animal receive dinner.

The Dental Boutique in Westchase is donating food to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay every time they receive a new patient.

Dr. Andrew Vallo has had a soft spot for animals in shelters ever since adopting his own dog from a shelter in Ohio.

“When we first adopted our dog Sampson he was very underweight and malnourished, he was missing patches of hair,” said Vallo.

Vallo made a pledge, once he opened his own practice, he would find a way to give back.

“When we went to that shelter obviously Sampson wasn’t the only dog and as much as my fiancé would have loved to take every dog in the shelter home obviously it wasn’t feasible,” said Vallo.

Almost four years later, Dr. Vallo, with Sampson right by his side, is one week away from the grand opening of The Dental Boutique in Westchase.

“Sampson kind of started his new journey with our family around the same time I started my journey as a dentist and we kind of together created this office,” said Vallo.

Opening your own office comes with a long list of requirements and equipment, but Vallo never lost track of what was most important.

“For every new patient that comes to our office we are donating an entire months worth of food to a hungry animal through the Humane Society of Tampa Bay,” said Vallo.

For a medium-sized dog, that’s about $300 worth of food. The Tampa Bay Humane Society said they are proud to be a partner.

“It is very expensive obviously to feed all of these animals,” said Ornella Varchi with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. “It is only because of the community that we can stay open and help all of the animals that we do help.”

During any one given time, there could be up to 400 animals waiting for adoption, according to Varchi.

“It means so much every time that we get a call like this, it just makes us so happy because we know it’s more animals that we can take in and we can help and we can save,” said Varchi.

Vallo said he’s already seeing excitement among new patients regarding the promotion.

“And my hope is by the time we open we’ll be at 100 patients which will be 100 months of food for animals at the shelter,” said Vallo.