Frank Dondanville, the eldest of nine children of Daniel Dondanville and Mary Ellen DeBolt, was born in Serena Township, LaSalle County, Illinois on April 23, 1874. He attended elementary school in Serena Township and probably graduated from Sheridan, Illinois High School. He attended Chicago College of Veterinary Medicine, graduating in 1906.
Following graduation, Frank moved to Larned Kansas where he trained horses for a short time. In 1907 he moved to Dodge City and established his practice there. He was believed to be the first professionally trained veterinarian to practice in Kansas. Known as a lover of horses Frank continued to train horses for other owners. His hobby was harness racing and he had race horses of his own at various times.
Shortly after his move to Dodge City, Frank married Catherine Crilly. Frank's nephew Garth Howser recalled that they had one child who died at birth. It is believed that Frank and Catherine also applied for homesteads in Montana, along with other members of the family, although they never gave up their Dodge City residence. They bought property in Colorado and spent time there in their later years.
Catherine died about 1945. Frank remarried about 1950 at age 76. He died on February 2, 1952. He is buried in Maple Grove Cemetery in Dodge City.