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Small business of the year

Assemblyman George A. Plescia recently selected La Jolla Veterinary Hospital as the Small Business of the Year for his district, the 75th.

Each assembly member selects one business per year for the honor in his or her district. The awards are given to small businesses that are identified as improving the economy and making a difference in their communities.

Reached by e-mail, Plescia said he chose La Jolla Veterinary Hospital based on his experiences having had all of his dogs treated at the facility. He also said he has run into many people throughout San Diego who use the hospital and praise its work.

Plescia wrote, “We deal with a lot of issues in Sacramento and they (the hospital) were invaluable in helping me understand some of the issues we deal with.”

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Dr. Marilyn Seals acquired the 60-year-old practice in 2001 from Dr. Jean Spengel and Dr. Valerie Ewell. Before purchasing the business, Seals was employed by the hospital as a veterinarian for more than 15 years.

She said she has known many of her current clients since they were children.

Seals attributes the success of the business to compassion for animals and for people. When wildfires ravaged parts of San Diego last October, Seals and the rest of the staff volunteered their services and cared for animals that sustained serious injuries. After Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, Spengel spent two weeks in New Orleans volunteering her services and assisting in animal rescue efforts.