A Little History
Wilds Veterinary Hospital was built by Dr. Charles H. Wight in the mid-1930s, though it existed as a business at another Grand Terrace location some years before that. Dr. Wight, a cousin to the famous author of the All Creatures books, James Herriot, graduated with Dr. Cantwell, Sr., in 1916 with a dual degree in human and veterinary medicine from Kansas City Medical and Veterinary College. Both doctors remained close friends through their service in WWI and later years until the death of Dr. Cantwell, whereupon Dr. Wight married the widowed Mrs. Cantwell and adopted her son, Howard. He then moved his new family to Grand Terrace.
Howard later attended school in Kansas, and graduated from veterinary school in 1940. He was commissioned in the Army Veterinary Corp during WWII. Upon discharge from the Army, Howard practiced with Dr. Wight and lived on the premises of the hospital on La Cadena Drive, until the retirement of his stepfather in the mid-1950s.
Years of Growth
Over the years, the scope of the practice changed from treating all animals to primarily dogs and cats, and some exotic species. In 1982, Dr. Dennis Wilds purchased the practice and expanded it to a 24-hour hospital and boarding facility, serving outpatient clinics in the cities of Bloomington, Grand Terrace, and Perris as well.
By 2000, two other hospitals in San Bernardino and Highland joined Wilds Veterinary Hospital, sending emergency and surgical cases to the main hospital in Riverside. In 2012, Reginald and Heidi Jackson purchased Wilds Veterinary Hospital and AlaPalm Animal Hospital in Highland. Dr. Wilds is retired, though the Jackson family chose to retain the business name of Wilds Veterinary Hospital, continuing to provide uninterrupted veterinary service to the Inland Empire into the twenty first century.
The veterinarians who have operated these hospitals through the years have achieved a level of excellence. They have given themselves and their means back to their communities, and have received many awards from many different entities over the years.