Growing up on Long Island, I was the kid taking care of the baby bird that fell from the nest, rescuing the turtles from the road, walking the neighbors’ dogs for fun, and volunteering to clean cages at the shelter. I moved to North Carolina to attend Guilford College in Greensboro (where I rescued and raised an orphaned squirrel senior year) and have lived in the Triangle since graduating from Guilford. I have been a small animal Veterinarian since 1997 after graduating from NCSU College of Veterinary Medicine.
I have always been passionate about caring for animals since I was a child. Growing up, I lived in Kinston, NC, then moved to Wilmington, NC, during my teenage years. In college, I had the chance to work at The London Zoo. This experience sparked my interest in veterinary medicine. When I graduated from my undergraduate studies, I worked in a small animal hospital, working my way up from cleaning kennels to becoming a veterinary assistant. This is when I decided to start my journey in becoming a Veterinarian.
As a child, growing up in Albany, New York, my dream was to become a Veterinarian. During my undergraduate studies at Cornell University, I was interested in all areas of veterinary medicine ranging from small and large animals to zoo and exotic animals. Once I started vet school, I discovered my interest was greatest for companion animals. I graduated from Washington State University and then moved to Virginia to begin working at a small animal practice. After being there for a few years, my husband, a South Carolina native, and I decided to move our family to the Triangle for its beauty and family atmosphere.
I am married and have two adult sons. While we have had many, many pets in our family, we currently have a cat and two dogs, and all 3 are rescues. Ginny, our teenage orange tabby that we bottle raised with her 2 brother kittens. Luna Blu, our Australian Cattle Dog, who we adopted in 2018 after she survived rat bait poisoning as a 10-week-old puppy. She is super smart and high energy! And finally, our Frenchie we adopted in 2023. He was almost six years old and was discarded; the poor fellow did not even know his name, nor was he house-trained. He is eager to please, very silly, thinks he is a guard dog, and knows his new name, Phineas, as well as his pet names, Phin and Phinny.
I realized while working in small animal medicine for over 25 years, that being able to say goodbye to my own pets at home was much more serene than within the hospital environment. I have helped dozens of our own pets at home with my family, both human and furry friends, being able to participate in saying goodbye to our furry family members. After 14 years in private practice, I joined a small then but now exceptionally large national company that provided in-home end-of-life care and became their first franchise, Lap of Love of the Triangle. During that time, I became a Certified Hospice and Palliative Care Veterinarian after completing an 18-month Continuing Education program through the International Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care (IAAHPC).
After 12 years with Lap of Love, I founded Gentle Journey with the assistance of my team so we could continue helping families locally. Positively impacting the lives of families and their pets gives me a great feeling of satisfaction. I am honored to serve families in a way that eases their grief and their pet’s life as peacefully as possible. If the pet can be kept comfortable and his or her quality of life maintained through nursing care and pain management, then pet owners may be able to extend the quality time they have with their cherished companions.
I graduated from North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Throughout my veterinary career, I have worked in different fields of veterinary medicine. Small animal practice is what I have enjoyed the most. My interest in senior pet care evolved while having 2 senior pets of my own. I joined our team in 2022.
The loss of my beloved pets taught me the capacity for compassion. I held them in my arms at home when it was their time to cross over. I hold dearly these peaceful moments of dignity. I still cherish the memories of them in my heart. The human-animal bond is a bond that is never broken, not even with the passing of a pet.
A peaceful passing for a pet, allowing them to remain in their home surrounded by their family, cuddled in a favorite lap, with delicious treats, and snuggle buddies, it is our last gift of love. I hope to ease suffering and offer compassion to pets and their families. Witnessing the grace and love between pets and their families is a beautiful tribute to the pet’s life and journey.
I have always found senior and hospice care to be extremely rewarding and an important part of veterinary medicine. When I joined this team in 2018, I quickly realized that it was my calling. Being able to help pets cross the Rainbow Bridge and ease their suffering is such a privilege. It is my honor to be there for families and help them say goodbye to their beloved pets at home with love and dignity.