Cat declawing is possibly one of the most controversial of all animal surgeries. Cats scratch to mark territory and to keep their claws in top condition, but the scratching behavior can challenge ...View Article
Dr. James F. Wilson
James F. Wilson, DVM, JD graduated from Iowa State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 1967 and UCLA’s School of Law in 1973. During the 16 years he lived in CA, Dr. Wilson practiced small animal emergency medicine for two years, worked as an associate for four, and was a partner in Four Corners Veterinary Hospital in Concord, CA for 10 years. In 1986, Dr. Wilson moved to Pennsylvania where he served as medical director at the University of Pennsylvania’s small animal hospital for two years. His medial special interest is in small animal ear care problems. Currently, he teaches veterinary law, ethics, business management, and career development at 18-20 veterinary schools each year throughout the USA with sponsorship from the Veterinary Pet Insurance Company.
Dr. Wilson has authored six books and over 130 articles in various veterinary journals. In 1994, he was a founder of the American Veterinary Medical Law Association (AVMLA). During 1996, he was awarded the prestigious Clinical Sciences Teacher of the Year Award by the Student AVMA House of Delegates. In 2000, he cofounded the Association of Veterinary Practice Management Consultants and Advisors (now called VetPartnersTM). He currently serves on the VetPartnersTM Career Development Committee, Veterinary Pet Insurance’s (VPI) Veterinary Advisory Board, and as a national advisor for the Veterinary Business Management Association (VBMA).
Dr. Leslee Feaster
Associate Veterinarian / Co-Medical Director
As our pack continues to grow, we are happy to introduce our newest team member. Dr. Leslee Feaster is a great doctor who truly loves her clients and patients. It's not unusual to see her in exam rooms on the floor with your dog or in the kennels, comforting cats who are nervous about an overnight stay. A native of Huntington, WV, Dr. Feaster attended her undergrad at Marshall University (Go Herd!), graduating with a BS in Biology in 2004. From there, it was on to The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine earning her veterinary degree in 2008. Since graduation, Dr. Feaster has practiced at several different hospitals in Virginia and Delaware before joining us here at the Pet Health Center.
Dr Feaster is committed to working with her clients to maximize the quality of life for their pets. “It’s nice to feel like I am making a difference,” she says, “I feel like my job is to heal and educate, which is why I became a veterinarian.” She is filled with lots of information that will help you keep your pet healthy and your vet bills down. She looks forward to leading our new Community Education program, which is dedicated to hosting educational events here at the hospital. “There is so much misinformation out there,” she explains, “if we at the Pet Health Center can help break down the misconceptions on what veterinary medicine is and foster understanding on how we can help, I will feel like we are doing our job.” When we asked why she became a vet, her answer was simple, “I have always wanted to be an advocate for pets, to help prevent and alleviate illness and suffering. Veterinary medicine is the perfect outlet for this passion.”
Dr. Feaster and her husband live in New Jersey with their three incredibly spoiled cats: Midian, Pippin, and Luna. During her free time, Dr. Feaster enjoys baking, cheering on Marshall University's football team, visiting Renaissance festivals, and vanquishing monsters from the world of Skyrim.
Assist. Manager/Head Veterinary Technician
Coming from the west side of Philadelphia is Matthew Carr. Born and raised in the Drexel Hill area, Matt brought his talents to PHC because he felt a need to expand his skills as a practice manager. After graduating Delaware Valley College with a major in Animal Science he started to pursue his career in veterinary medicine. When asked why/how he got into veterinary medicine he explained, ”my passion for anything to do with animals and nature started at a very young age. I have had a wide variety of pets including a dog, cat, snake, rat, doves, ducks, turtles, hamsters, Guinea pigs, lizards, and fish. The reason I choose this career was to be able to help sick animals and educate owners how they can best care for their little loved ones.
His skills and experience as an emergency medicine technician have helped us take our medicine to the next level. When asked how the transition from emergency medicine to general practice is going he responded, “I left emergency medicine because I missed watching pets grow up and building lasting relationships with our clients. So much of what I did before I never got to see the final result. I feel at home here because I get to do both.”
Not one to stand still or spend time in bed, he loves to travel and has even spent time volunteering for a Cheetah reserve in Africa. “My other true passion is putting the kayak in the water and my boxer, Diesel (pictured above) in the front seat and cheering for the Flyers. I bleed orange and black.” His goal is to help ensure your pet’s safety by providing high quality care while they are with us. He loves to educate so feel free to ask him any questions you might have.
Assist Manager/Veterinary Technician
Ms. Jessica C. Bermudez was born and raised in Mt. Holly, NJ and although she is not a Philly native she loves the city and the clientele she serves. “Philadelphia always gets the rep as such a tough city, but we have some of the nicest clients I have ever met,” she explained. Her passion for animals started as a child and she dreamed of one day working in a job where she could care for them.
She took her passion for animals to Centenary College graduating with a major in Equine studies and minoring in Biology. As a member of various clubs and organizations while attending college, she earned numerous awards and accolades in leadership and dedication, all while volunteering her free time to work with local horse farms. When asked why she likes working here she replied, “giving back to the community is something I take pride in which is one of the reasons I love working for the Pet Health Center because I truly believe we are helping the local community.”
Jessica has been working in the veterinary field since 2004 and her passion for her work can be seen on her great smile that goes ear to ear. We are proud to have her as our Assistant Manager/Veterinary Technician. We feel blessed to have her many talents and dedication to providing exemplary client service. An equally dedicated mom when not in the office she enjoys spending time with her family. She says, "From cheerleading competitions and gymnastics to basketball and softball games, there is never a dull moment with Eric and our children!"
Certified Veterinary Technician
More in info to come
Certified Veterinary Technician
More info to come
Another Philadelphia native on our team, Marlena has roots in the Philadelphia/South Jersey region and is proud to be serving her local community. From childhood she has competed in equestrian sports where her desire to work with animals blossomed. “ In my teenage years I realized how much I love working with animals” and from those experiences she started focusing on a path into veterinary medicine.
She accomplished her goal through hard work and dedication, beginning her journey as a barn assistant, pet sitter and for the past four years a veterinary assistant. “I plan to evolve within my career as extensively as possible with the help of my diverse team of coworkers,” she explained. Her dedication, experience, skills and compassion help us deliver the care and attention your pet needs.
When not working for the Pet Health Center she is pursuing a Doctorate in English from Temple University. “Go Owls.” She is just as dedicated to her school work as she is to our patient care leaving her with little “free time,” but given the opportunities she enjoys traveling with a good book and being outdoors with her flock of three corgis (Chester, Dixie and Pudgy) and spending time her PHC rescue kitten Arya Stark who keeps her on her toes.
Jay came to us after spending a couple of years working for the Philadelphia SPCA. Her love for animals started from as long as she can remember. “I had always been the type to pick up every stray on my walk home from school.” She started to explore the idea of working with animals in 2010 and explains it was love at first sight for her new chosen career. “I was first introduced to my love for animals when I walked into the treatment center at the PSPCA. I was immediately drawn to all the excitement, the compassion of the employees, and couldn’t stop thinking of all the good I could do for not only the pets, but the people who take care of them.”
In her role with us she finds enjoyment every day in helping our clients understand the “what” and “whys” of our medicine. Asked the other day how she likes her new role she responded, “It feels really good to help explain how we can help someone keep their pet healthy and safe.”
When she is not obsessing on how cute your little fur-babies are she is obsessing over her own. The proud mama of 6 beautiful cats and a gorgeous pup who keeps her very busy. When she isn’t pre-occupied with work and her pets she is still dedicated to this community always trying to find opportunities to use her entrepreneurial skills by running a nonprofit clothing company called “BombProof” which helps the LGBT community as well as making donation to the PSPCA of time and money. Another proud PHC team member she wants you to know that “I can’t wait to meet you and your fur-children!”
Veterinary Assistant / Shuttle Van Driver
Ken was born and raised in South Philadelphia. Before getting into the Veterinary field Ken spent 15 years in the Transportation industry, eventually serving as VP of Sales for the entire country. Having to extensively travel in this industry Ken realized the satisfaction he sought from a career was not becoming a realization.
His attention turned toward a passion that was always in the back of his mind. “I grew up with animals, I grew up fascinated by all animals, I grew up loving animals, so why not find a way to combine my customer service experience and business skills into an industry working with something I have always loved, animals” With this in mind, he gave up the business world came back home to Philadelphia to be close with family, and put himself through the Penn Foster Academy to begin learning the skills necessary to make the transition.
He has been in the Veterinary field going on 2 years and brings great experience and understanding to our team having worked for the local SPCA. He understands many of the concerns you have as pet owners and looks forward to answering any questions about your pet’s health. “If I don’t know the answer to your question, you can rest assure I will find out. If what we are recommending is confusing at all, or if you have any concerns, just let me know and I will gladly spend the time with you to ensure you are happy and comfortable with our medicine.” It is his enjoyment for customer service and client education that will help us deliver the experience you deserve as a Pet Health Center client.
When not working, Ken enjoys golfing, riding his Harley and is probably the biggest Eagles fan in the hospital. “E-A-G-L-E-S!!!” He still resides in South Philly and has a 7 month old Yellow Lab named "Sassy." A newer member of our team he was approached by management and asked how things are going, his response, “ I have found the satisfaction he was looking for.”
Veterinary Assistant/Summer Staff Member
Drew is currently enrolled in a vet technology program through his high-school in Florida. He will be spending his next three summers working with us while he finishes his diploma and certification. More information to follow.
Michael F. Wilson
The son of Dr. Wilson, Michael grew up in the veterinary industry. "The veterinary industry is in my blood. My first memories as a child are going to my dad's animal hospital in Orinda, CA to help feed the dogs." He is thrilled to be working side by side with his father and can't believe after all of these years he finds himself with this opportunity. "They say the apple never falls far from the tree, but sometimes it does roll away a little." He comes to the practice after spending the last year working as a Practice Liaison with My Veterinary Career, a company dedicated to helping recruit and staff veterinary hospitals nationwide.
Prior to his career in recruitment, Michael was owner and operator of Rocky Mountain Carriage Company located in Vail,CO. He is the proud father of two wonderful little boys, Riley and Ziggy, who might be seen working the front desk or playing with the animals. Along with spending time with his family, Mike enjoys karaoke (rumor is he does an amazing Neil Diamond impersonation), skiing and being outdoors, listening to music and being an involved father of two.
Customer Service Representative
Maggie is another newbie who is best known for her great hair and awesome personality. We would be shocked to see her at work without a smile going from ear to ear. Having recently joined our team this summer she brings excellent customer service to our team and a desire to learn more about the medicine we practice.
Maggie is another Port Richmond native and graduate of Little Flower Catholic High School for Girls. As far back as she can remember Maggie has always been an animal lover bringing home stray animals since the age of 5. Her dedication to animal care has influenced her to foster dozens of homeless cats and dogs over the years. She is the proud mother of three cats Mittens, Gypsy and Millie, all whom are rescues. It is because of Mittens that we found Maggie.
In August Mittens came to the Pet Health Center very sick and was diagnosed with Hepatic Lipidosis causing Mittens to stop eating and drinking resulting in mass weight loss. Eventually a feeding tube was placed and we are glad to report that Mittens is as happy and healthy as she has ever been. It was the care and compassion she showed for her cat along with her positive upbeat personality that prompted us to offer her a position. Once she has mastered the skills necessary as a customer service rep she has her sights set on attending Mannor College to earn her degree in Veterinary Technology.
When not at the hospital Maggie likes to spend her free time with family and friends and enjoying all that life has to offer.
Customer Service Representative
A local resident of the Philadelphia area, Kala recently joined our team to help deliver high quality customer service. As an avid animal lover and the parent of two cats, Sahara and Tsunami, she understands the importance of making sure you as our client get the type of customer experience you deserve.
New to this industry, she brings great experience as an office administrator and customer service representative. Perhaps the job she is most proud of was the 5 years she spent in the US Virgin Islands working with youth in an Alternative Education Program helping troubled teens. “I love working here because just like my job in the islands, I truly believe I am making a positive impact on the health and happiness of our patients.” she points out. “Our clients and patients need our help just as much those children needed me and it is very rewarding to be a difference maker.”
When not being a dedicated team member, Kala loves being outside spending time at the beach, parks and anywhere else she can enjoy nature. At the end of the day she loves exploring new restaurants and spending quality time with family and friends.
Customer Service Representative
Ashley hails from South Philly, though she was born at Northeastern Hospital, not too far from our own practice. After graduating from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY with a BFA in Writing, Ashley returned home to not only continue her creative endeavors (mainly her thesis, a novel in progress) but also pursue a job to supplement her writing dreams. “Writing is my passion but I realize it’s gonna be a long road and lots of hard work before I can make it a career,” she explains.
Unlike many of our employees Ashley didn’t grow up with a household full of strays. “I have always loved animals,” she says, “but my mother was severely allergic so we were never able to have the fury ones, this job is awesome because I can make up for a lot of lost time loving my own pets by loving yours.” Ashley came to the Pet Health Center and has been dutifully learning the ropes as a Customer Service Representative. Her experience as a Front Desk Worker in her college's Student Involvement Office has given her a welcoming attitude and a calm nature that she hopes will serve as the first point of contact with you as our clients. “I may not have all of your answers yet, but I will find them for you if I don’t.”
Since joining the team she has come a long way with understanding the needs of a pet parent. We are planning to put her writing talents to use as she helps us develop new marketing material and our first ever newsletter. When not contributing to team PHC you can find Ashley hanging out with friends, working on her thesis novel and attending ComicCon events.