We have provided a summary of the education, experience, and interests of the many skilled veterinarians at Mount Laurel Animal Hospital. We invite you to review our summaries and contact us with any questions you may have.
Edward Aller, VMD
Edward Aller joined the Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in January 2014. After graduating from Ward Melville High School Dr. Aller attended State University of New York Binghamton, graduating with a degree in biological sciences. While at Binghamton received an undergraduate research award and was a member of the PreVet Society. He earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Aller’s professional interests include emergency surgery, exotic pet care, and general medicine. He is a member of Alpha Psi and the Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association.
Dr. Aller and his wife Mariana have a cat named “King Arthur” and two live coral aquariums. In his free time he enjoys snowboarding, hiking, fishing, traveling, and exploring the natural world.
“the most satisfying part of being a veterinarian is when you see your patients months or years after a sick visit and they are healthy,” says Dr. Aller. “It is very fulfilling to make an animal feel better and give them more quality time with their family.”
Lauren Coblentz, DVM
Dr. Coblentz joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2007. She graduated from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in 2001 and completed a clinical year of study at North Carolina College of Veterinary Medicine in 2002. Dr. Coblentz’s special interests include veterinary surgery and endocrinology.
Dr. Coblentz has several hobbies outside of veterinary medicine such as traveling, snorkeling, working out, supporting the Philadelphia Phillies, going to concerts, and spending time with family and friends. She proud mom to, Mario, an 11 year-old domestic longhair cat and Cayman, a Vizsla puppy.
According to Dr. Coblentz, “The best thing about being a veterinarian is the opportunity to establish long-term relationships with clients and their pets, to ensure the best possible medical prevention and care.” Dr. Coblentz states that, as long as she can remember, she always wanted to be a veterinarian.
Caroline Garzotto, VMD, DACVS, CCRT
Dr. Garzotto began seeing patients at the Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2007. She is a board certified small animal surgeon since 2001 who achieved certification as a Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT) in 2012. Dr. Garzotto has served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania and operates her own traveling surgery service.
Dr. Garzotto does both soft tissue and orthopedic surgery and has particular interest in the areas of sports medicine, rehabilitation and pain management, oncologic surgery and wound management/reconstructive surgery.
Veterinary medicine is a second career for Dr. Garzotto, who for six years worked as an electrical/computer engineer in Pittsburgh, PA. Although she enjoyed engineering, she finally realized her dream of becoming a veterinarian after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1996. That was followed by a private practice internship, and then a 3 year surgical residency at Tufts University/Angell Memorial Animal Hospital.
Dr. Garzotto lives in South Jersey with her husband, two daughters, 4 cats and one little dog. She enjoys teaching, reading, yoga and gardening. She obviously loves to do surgery, but her most rewarding thing about being a veterinarian is the ability to work with owners on providing options to help improve the lives of their pets with pain, injury or illness through both surgical and non-surgical means.
Meryl Gupta, VMD
Dr. Gupta joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2003. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 2001. Dr. Gupta has a special interest in emergency medicine and critical care.
Dr. Gupta decided to become a veterinarian while in high school. Had she not become a veterinarian, Dr. Gupta says she would likely be working in a basic science research laboratory.
In her free time, she enjoys reading fantasy novels (especially those with magic and/or dragons), watching home improvement and de-cluttering shows, and playing with her two and four legged children.
Dr. Gupta lives in Mount Laurel with her husband, daughter, Chloe, and son, Deven. Her pets include Jada, a 9 year-old Pit Bull mix, Jonah, a 7 year-old Shepherd mix (both of whom are parvovirus survivors) as well as 2 domestic short hair cats, Scar and Moo.
According to Dr. Gupta, the best thing about being a veterinarian is helping animals as well as their caretakers.
Renee Senz-Hanan, VMD
Dr. Senz-Hanan joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2001. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 1997. Dr. Senz-Hanan always wanted to be a veterinarian; however, she had a first “career” as a social worker with aging, Italian-speaking clients in East Boston. Dr. Senz-Hanan has a special interest in internal medicine and geriatric pets, and proudly owns a beautiful, geriatric and diabetic cat named Holly. Her outside interests include reading, traveling and most currently her three young children.
The best thing about being a veterinarian: “The relationship between clients and their pets.”
Jeffrey Haymaker, VMD
Dr. Jeffrey Haymaker joined the Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2014. He earned his B.S. in Veterinary Technology from Quinnipiac University, graduating Cum Laude. He then earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 2014. While in college, Dr. Haymaker was the vice president of the Vet Tech Club and received numerous Dean’s List awards.
Dr. Haymaker grew up in Berkley Heights, NJ but has since relocated to the Mount Laurel area where he resides with his cat “Mimsy”, which he adopted while in veterinary school. He spends his free time going to the beach in the summer and snowblading in the winter. “I enjoy doing anything with good friends,” he says.
“Having an established relationship with a family and their pet, and seeing the family’s appreciation after helping their pet is one of the most satisfying parts of being a veterinarian,” Dr. Haymaker says.
Karen Hoffman, VMD
Dr. Hoffman joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2006. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in 1990.
Prior to entering veterinary school, Dr. Hoffman attended the University of New Hampshire where she majored in Microbiology. While attending a PhD program in Virology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, she became interested in medicine. When a tragic accident took the life of her beloved first dog, Dr. Hoffman realized that her true passion was veterinary medicine.
Dr. Hoffman lived in Italy from 1991 to 1993 and, while there, she opened a veterinary hospital which is still open and caring for pets today. In her spare time Dr. Hoffman enjoys reading novels by Stephen King, going to the movies, riding her bike, and spending time with her family and friends. She is also a loving mother to three Standard Poodles, Penny, Rudy and Sophie.
Dr. Hoffman says, “The best thing about being a veterinarian is being able to interact daily with many cats and dogs. Each pet is special in their own way. I love helping them, resolving their problems and making the veterinary visit as easy as possible for them.”
James Laessig, DVM
Dr. Laessig joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2003 when he created Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey which operates from the same location as Mount Laurel Animal Hospital. Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey allows patients of Mount Laurel Animal Hospital to receive true 24-hour medical care, which is something no other hospital in the region is able to offer their patients.
In December 2013 Doctors Mankowski and Torre purchased both Mount Laurel Animal Hospital and Animal Emergency Service of Jersey from Dr. Laessig.
Dr. Laessig is a 1992 graduate of Drexel University, receiving a Bachelor of Science Degree with an emphasis on Microbiology. He graduated from Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1996.
Dr. Laessig states that, from childhood, he dreamed of nothing other than being a veterinarian. To support his financial needs as an undergraduate and throughout college, he managed a McDonalds, worked as a veterinary technician, and held many other positions.
When asked about special interests, Dr. Laessig says, “No one aspect rivals my affection for providing comprehensive care to my patients, and I enjoy the puzzle of figuring out difficult cases. I have a strong love for the thrill of emergency medicine, and enjoy working in the fast-paced environment that comes with that part of veterinary medicine.”
Dr. Laessig has two cats. Both are female and were born in the summer of 2004. They were given to him after a staff member from the hospital rescued their mother. “Pewter” is an affectionate lover, and “Scarlet” is a playful neurotic. Dr. Laessig enjoys reading and professes to be a Macintosh computer addict. He is also certified in scuba diving.
According to Dr. Laessig, the best thing about being a veterinarian is, “Feeling like I have truly helped a client and their pet; helping people understand what they can do to keep their pets healthy, and looking for ways to enhance the human-animal bond. Working with animals is a reward in and of itself, because it is a constant reminder of how precious life can be. It is very rewarding to ‘beat the odds’ and to help an animal survive its injuries, or use my skills and knowledge to improve a pet’s quality of life. I also enjoy working with so many excellent people in what can be a very difficult job, and am committed to doing my part to make the hospital the best it can be – for our clients and their pets, and the people who work here.”
Rachel Manson, DVM
Dr. Rachel Manson joined the hospital in March 2014. Her professional interests include emergency medicine, neonatal medicine, and wound management. She is a member of the Veterinary Emergency Critical Care Society, the American Veterinary Medical Association, and the South Jersey Veterinary Medical Association.
Growing up in Abington, Pennsylvania, Dr. Manson had a special bond with animals from an early age. “My first dog Maggie, a yellow lab, was a huge inspiration to me,” she says. At the age five, the young Dr. Manson took her pet guinea pig to her local veterinarian for the first time. The experience had a profound effect on her, she says. “I knew right away it was for me, and I’ve stayed on that path since that moment.”
After graduating from Abington High School, Dr. Manson attended Delaware Valley College and Manor College, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Biology and Veterinary Technology in 2006. She earned her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine. After graduating, she spent one year in a small animal medicine and surgery internship in New York.
Dr. Manson has an Olde English Bulldogge named Luna. In her free time, she stays busy with art projects, yoga, and spending time with family and friends.
Robert L. Mankowski, VMD – Co-owner
Dr. Mankowski joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2004. He graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science from Rutgers University in 1999 then proceeded on to the University of Pennsylvania graduating with a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in 2004.
In December 2013, Dr. Mankowski, together with Dr. Torre, purchased both Mount Laurel Animal Hospital and Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey.
Dr. Mankowski has wanted to be a veterinarian for as long as he can remember. He has a special interest in performing surgeries. In his free time, Dr. Mankowski enjoys going to the Jersey shore where he spends his time fishing, boating, swimming, and relaxing. His other interests include playing poker, traveling, and sports.
Dr. Mankowski lives in Mount Laurel with his wife, two wonderful children, his cat Pumkin, a Chihuahua named Bella and a newly rescued mixed breed dog named Chewy.
The best thing about being a veterinarian: “There are so many things I love about being a veterinarian, especially playing a role in the human-animal bond. When I see a person and their pet, I see a unique relationship, one that is usually filled with unconditional love. The bond between a person and their pet is among the strongest of bonds and it is my privilege to be able to play a role to uphold and enhance that bond.”
Rebecca Merrifield, DVM
Dr. Merrifield joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital as a Veterinary Technician in 1991. She has worked here as a Veterinarian since 2002. She is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 2000.
Dr. Merrifield owns one Norwegian elkhound named Morganna. Her hobbies and interests include music, reading, writing, cross-stitch and latch hook.
Dr. Merrifield always wanted to be a veterinarian and has a special interest in internal medicine, behavior, and the human/animal bond.
She thinks the best things about being a veterinarian is seeing sick animals return to health and seeing puppies and kittens just starting life’s journey.
Molly Northrop, VMD
Dr. Molly Northrop joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2005. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1998. Dr. Northrop says she always wanted to be a veterinarian and has a special interest in Emergency Veterinary Medicine. Her outside interests include scuba diving, horseback riding and Scrabble. Fondly referred to as Dr. Molly, she is mom to two rescued fur babies: Weasel, a wirey, three-legged mixed breed dog that was found over 10 years ago with a severly injured back leg, and Biscuit, a loving cat that earned her name because even when she was critically ill she would knead with her paws as if making biscuits. These are two very lucky kids!
“The best thing about being a veterinarian”, says Dr. Northrop “is helping critters and their parents get back to day to day life.”
Marcy Rose, DVM, MS
Dr. Marcy Rose joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2003 as a full time Emergency Veterinarian. She is a graduate of Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 1985. Dr. Rose has a special interest in veterinary emergency medicine and veterinary surgery.
In her free time, Dr. Rose enjoys cross fit, wood working, gardening, cooking, biking and running with her dogs. Dr. Rose once provided treatment to an elephant that over indulged in monkey chow. Dr. Rose lives with her four rescued dogs: Honey Mustard, Dennis, Freeta and Ted, as well as two cats: Henry and Hannah.
Dr. Rose states that she always wanted to be a veterinarian and that the best thing about her job is helping animals and their families and good dog kisses.
Janna Schneiberg, VMD
Dr. Schneiberg joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2008. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 2000. Dr. Schneiberg has three Golden Retrievers: Jerry, Toby and Emma.
Dr. Schneiberg’s special interest is Internal Veterinary Medicine. Her main interest outside of veterinary medicine is spending time with her children and friends. She states that she wanted to be a veterinarian since she first learned that the profession existed at the age of seven. Dr. Schneiberg thinks the best thing about being a veterinarian is helping people keep their beloved pets around for as long as possible.
Karen Schreiber, MS, VMD
Dr. Schreiber joined our practice in 2011. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine Class of 2006. Dr. Schreiber also holds a Masters Degree in Counseling from Villanova University. Her special interests include surgery, feline medicine and dentistry. Dr. Schreiber also has a special interest in aquatic veterinary medicine which was fostered by having completed externships at SeaWorld in San Diego and the National Aquarium in Baltimore.
Raised in neighboring Moorestown, Dr. Schreiber remembers bringing her family pets to Dr. Sleeper at the Mount Laurel Animal Hospital. She still lives locally with her husband and is thrilled to be working at the very hospital where she and her family chose to bring her pets years ago. Dr. Schreiber enjoys hobbies such as running, kayaking, hiking, spending time at the beach, scuba diving, traveling, yoga and reading.
Best thing about being a veterinarian: “Working with animals and improving the quality of their lives. I love the diversity encountered on a daily basis – from performing surgery, to determining diagnosis, to educating clients on how best to care for their beloved pets. The opportunity to provide medical care for a pet throughout its lifespan is both unique and rewarding. I also enjoy the challenge that stems from the continually evolving field of veterinary medicine.”
Lauren Simermeyer, DVM
Dr. Lauren Simermeyer is rejoined our hospital in 2014. She had previously worked at Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey in 2009, and her professional interests include emergency and critical care, canine reproduction, and general veterinary medicine. She is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society.
While growing up in Willingboro, NJ, Dr. Simermeyer developed a love for animals and a desire to become a veterinarian. “Unfortunately,” she says, “I have been allergic to horses, dogs, and cats for most of my life. My parents encouraged me to pursue human medicine, but my heart just wasn’t in it. So much to their surprise, I told them that I just had to be a vet and I would suffer through the allergies.”
Dr. Simermeyer attended Muhlenberg College where she double majored in biology and psychology. She earned her Docterate of Veterinary Medicine from Iowa State College of Veterinary Medicine in 2007. In 2013, she received an award for excellence in Internal Medicine during clinical rotations. Dr. Simermeyer breeds and shows Cardigan Welsh Corgis and currently shares her home with twelve canine companions and two cats. In her free time, she enjoys kayaking, reading, and working on home improvements.
Edward M. Sleeper, VMD
Dr. Sleeper founded Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 1975 and developed it into a thriving business that he sold in 2006 to Dr. James Laessig. He continued to work at Mount Laurel Animal Hospital as a veterinarian for a few years; however, he is not seeing clients at this time.
Christopher Torre, VMD – Co-Owner
Dr. Torre joined the team at Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in June 2012. Chris was raised in Medford, NJ, and he is a 2004 graduate of Shawnee High School. Chris has always had an appreciation for animals and the outdoors. He began working at the Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey in college, and this sparked his interest in pursuing a career in veterinary medicine. He attended Cornell University for his undergraduate training and pre-vet coursework where he graduated with honors in 2007 with a double major in animal science and biology. During his time at Cornell, Chris worked closely with professors in the veterinary school and developed a strong appreciation for both small and large animal medicine. He went on to study veterinary medicine at the University of Pennsylvania where Chris was very involved on campus serving as the president of his class and as the president of the Penn Chapter of SCAVMA, the Student Chapter of the American Veterinary Medicinal Association. Chris received his VMD in 2012 as a mixed animal major performing his large animal training at New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, PA and his small animal training at the Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (VHUP) in Philadelphia.
In addition to working at local shelters during veterinary school, Dr. Torre also volunteered abroad on international service trips in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, and Thailand. As a veterinarian, Dr. Torre led a group of 20 veterinary students on a trip to Thailand where the group provided free medical services and spay and neuter services to stray dogs and cats to help with population control.
Chris enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine; however, he especially enjoys emergency medicine and surgery of all species. Chris lives with his wife Nicole (also a veterinarian) , their four dogs (Gus, Gigi, Sheldon and Sanchez), and their two cats (Simone and Stella). In his free time, Chris enjoys fishing, hiking, traveling, and getting whooped in basketball by his wife. Chris hopes to someday start his own hobby farm.
In December 2013, Dr. Torre, together with Dr. Mankowski, purchased both Mount Laurel Animal Hospital and Animal Emergency Service of South Jersey.
Kerri Wells, DVM
Dr. Kerri Wells joined our hospital in July, 2014. She is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Animal Hospital Association, and her professional interests include preventative medicine, emergency and critical care, and general veterinary medicine.
“Creating a strong bond with pets and their parents is the most rewarding part of being a veterinarian,” says Dr. Wells. “Seeing animals survive serious injuries and illnesses that you never thought possible is also very satisfying.”
Originally from Delta Junction, Alaska, Dr. Wells attended the University of Arizona where she majored in veterinary and animal science. She then attended North Carolina State University, graduating cum laude and earning her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2009.
Dr. Wells has three dogs: Jasmine, a husky mix; Banzai, a Mexican hairless; and George, a Chihuahua. She also has two cats, Cedric and Orca. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, photography and reading.
Alison Whiter, DVM
Dr. Whiter joined Mount Laurel Animal Hospital in 2007. She graduated in 2004 from Oklahoma State University and completed an internship in small animal medicine at Texas A&M University. She practiced for a few years in the Midwest before moving back to the Philadelphia area, which she has always considered home. She currently lives in Wynnewood, PA with her husband, 2 sons, dog and cat.
During her internship at Texas A&M, Dr. Whiter developed a strong interest in internal medicine, particularly oncology, which deals with cancer. Throughout her undergraduate years she was involved in research focusing on dairy cattle nutrition. Instead of veterinary school, Dr. Whiter planned on working toward her PhD in this field. In retrospect, she is very thankful she chose veterinary medicine because it is such a rewarding job.
Dr. Whiter thinks the best thing about being a veterinarian is getting to see the incredible strength of the human-animal bond and playing a small role in maintaining that relationship by keeping the pet happy and healthy.