Lisa Aumiller, DVM
As a kid I would bring home every little creature I could find. “Can I keep this one?” I would ask. Each time my parents would reply “No, you can’t keep that one either, but when you grow up and have your own house you can have as many pets as you want.” Needless to say, my wonderful husband, and our three very active children now share a house with 4 dogs, 4 cats, and 2 guinea pigs.
I always wanted to be a vet and was inspired by James Herriot, the mobile veterinarian and his books when I was a teenager. Becoming a visiting vet always seemed like such a romantic idea but never realistic. I studied undergraduate at Sweet Briar College, an all-women’s college in Amherst, Virginia and then headed to Blacksburg Virginia to VA-MD Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. I graduated in 1999 and started my dream career as a veterinarian. After 11 years in practice, I became disenchanted with how little time I was getting to spend with my patients and their owners and how corporate things were becoming in the veterinary field. At that point, almost overnight, Dr. Lisa’s Mobile Veterinary Service was born in April 2010, which soon became HousePaws Mobile Veterinary Service when additional vets joined the practice. My new life as a mobile vet is very exciting. I love meeting the pets and human companions in their own environment. It adds depths to being a vet that I previously never experienced.
Joyce Koch, VMD
Dr. Joyce Koch is a 1991 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine. She has been serving the South Jersey community as a small animal veterinarian ever since. Dr Koch says she can’t ever remember wanting to be anything other than a veterinarian. Even in first grade, she brought home and cared for an injured turtle. Starting at age 14 she rode her bike to work at a professional kennel. Her previous work experience includes being a veterinary technician as well as summer experience on a dairy farm. Her co-workers describe her as a caring, hands-on animal doctor who has a compassionate bedside manner.
Over the years, Dr. Koch’s household has been home to rescue dogs, cats, birds, fish and even snakes – so far. Many of the animals have accompanied her when she participates in career days and visits her sons’ schools. In addition to being a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Dr Koch has been active in the local professional organizations, the Southern New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association (SNJVMA) as well as the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association (NJVMA). She has held several offices including serving as President of the SNJVMA, served on the NJVMA Executive board for several years and was an active member of the Ethics and Grievance Committee.
Dr Koch is a past recipient of the South Jersey Veterinarian of the Year Award and the Robert Shomer VMD Veterinary Service Award. Although Dr. Koch has been in practice for twenty years, being part of Dr. Lisa’s Mobile Veterinary Service has provided her with a unique opportunity to really feel like she is becoming part of the pets’ family. By getting to know the pets’ owners and their environment, Dr. Koch feels she can provide even better medical care and advice for long-term wellness and a healthy, happy life.
Amanda Weiss, VMD
Dr. Weiss has practiced veterinary medicine in the tri-state area since 2006. Growing up in the Philadelphia suburbs, it was always her dream to attend the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary School. She accomplished this in 2005 and then spent the following year completing a rotating small animal internship at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. This training goes hand-in-hand with the love she has always felt for animals, making her a caring and compassionate veterinarian.
Dr. Weiss is very passionate about the human-animal bond, and the importance of pets as companions in our lives. She is excited to be a part of a team that helps promote that bond by providing exceptional veterinary care to patients in the comfort of their own home. She and her husband currently share their home with two rescued pets – a spunky Pomeranian named Heidi and a very loving but often lazy cat named Chester.
Dr. Howe-Smith graduated from MIT in 1986 and worked as an engineer in the aerospace industry for 7 years
designing jet engines. Returning to school to follow his true vocation he earned his veterinary degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1997.
Combining his engineering expertise with a strong interest in orthopedic surgery, he was inspired to develop and employ rehabilitative and physical methods that accelerate post operative recovery of his patients.
Dr. Howe-Smith quickly recognized the enormous potential that this form of therapy holds for the alleviation of pain and management of many chronic diseases. He founded PetPT in 1999, and as his interest and expertise in rehabilitation grew, he became known as an innovator and pioneer in this rapidly developing field.
He works with a wide variety of geriatric, orthopedic, neurologic and chronic pain conditions, and is a passionate advocate of balanced, common sense medicine that treats the whole patient to maximize total health and wellbeing.
Dana Koch, VMD
Dana grew up in Bucks County, PA before attending LaSalle University in Philadelphia and majoring in biology. She also received a master’s degree in Laboratory Animal Medicine from Drexel University and worked in the laboratory animal medicine field before completing her veterinary degree at the University of Pennsylvania. During her time in Veterinary School she was able to spend time as an extern with Guide Dogs for the Blind in California, with the American Veterinary Medical Association in Washington, D.C., and at the Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, PA.
In her spare time she enjoys teaching tennis to children, long distance running and volunteering with her therapy dog, Winston, at various schools, libraries and hospitals. Dana has fostered and rescued various cats, including her own, Allister and Luna. Dana is thrilled to be part of the House Paws team and to have the opportunity to work alongside dedicated and passionate individuals in the veterinary community.
Rebecca was born and raised in a very small town in western New York. After high school, she moved to the big city of Ithaca where she attended Cornell University and earned her BS in Animal Science. Then, she moved to the even bigger city of Philadelphia where she attended the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine and earned her VMD.
After veterinary school, Rebecca worked as an emergency vet at a large referral practice outside of Philadelphia then as a general practitioner in New Jersey before joining the House Paws team. Rebecca’s veterinary interests include acupuncture and physical therapy and small dogs (though she loves all types of furry friends).
Rebecca currently lives in Philadelphia with her husband, a fellow veterinarian. Together, they have two dogs: an Old English Sheepdog named “Pollyanna” and a Japanese Chin named “Ginger”. In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys running, yoga, hiking with her dogs, trying new restaurants, the ballet, and attempting to cook. She is very excited to be a part of the House Paws team!
Matt Dembowski, DVM
Matt grew up in nearby Haddonfield New Jersey, where his family owned and operated the Three Beans Coffee Company. Matt can’t remember a time when he didn’t want to be a veterinarian. He has spent his whole life around animals; growing up amongst numerous dogs, cats, pocket pets, and reptiles; working as a kennel tech at Rothman animal hospital as a teenager; working at Camp BowWow Cherry Hill as a Camp Counselor to earn money for Vet School, and collecting numerous strays over the years.
After 4 years of veterinary school in Virginia, Matt was thrilled to return to New Jersey to begin his career with HousePaws. He is extremely excited and grateful to be working with such a unique and dedicated team of veterinary professionals. As a new vet, Matt is still developing his professional interests, but enjoys physical therapy, rehab, and surgery.
Matt resides in his hometown of Haddonfield with his girlfriend Jen, a gifted artist with a talent for painting and drawing animal portraits. They share their home with their dog Luna and their two cats Chai and Pepper.
Lauren Silvesti, DVM
Dr. Lauren is excited to Join the HousePaws team after practicing veterinary medicine In the South Jersey area for the last 12 years. She was born, raised and currently resides In Hammonton, NJ. She can’t remember ever wanting to be anything but a veterinarian. Dr. Lauren achieved her goal by obtaining her DVM degree from Iowa State University in 2000 after graduating Cook College, Rutgers University in 1996. She spent summers as a veterinary technician, a pharmacy technician at the vet school and as a vet assistant/farm laborer on a Michigan pig farm. She had the unique opportunity to pursue her passion in alternative medicine and study acupuncture at Beijing University , China during her senior year of veterinary school. Her professional interests include dermatology, behaviour and integrative medicine incorporating eastern and western medicine philosophies and therapies.
Dr. Tara Scarlett is a true South Jersey girl having been born and raised in Woodbury and now residing in Swedesboro. She knew she wanted to be a veterinarian since she was 5 years old. From playing ‘nurse’ to a nest of baby squirrels that had fallen out of a tree to trying to save a bunny she found, her love of animals has been, and continues to be, deep-rooted.
She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Biology and continued her studies at the UPenn Vet School and graduated in 2004. Since then she has been practicing general medicine in the South Jersey area. Dr. Tara is extremely passionate about client education and preventative care and she is very excited to be a part of the House Paws team! She has a huge soft spot in her heart for the kitties but she loves all furry creatures!
She enjoys spending her downtime with her husband and two young children and two kitties named Charlie and Pickles. Tara enjoys running, swimming and fishing in her free time, reading and putting up fruit preserves. She’s a closet Trekkie (Next Generation fo course!) and a baker at heart and enjoys surprising her loved ones and coworkers with goodies!
Dr. Tara is new to the mobile veterinary field and she looks forward to seeing clients in this new element and to the challenges it may bring!
Lisa Hecht, DVM
Dr Lisa Hecht grew up in Bergen County, New Jersey, and has always been surrounded by animals. Originally wanting to be an “Animal Cop” she found her calling in veterinary medicine at the age of 14. Dr. Hecht attended Lehigh University, where she met her husband and graduated with a degree in Biochemistry,
before heading to the tropical island of St. Kitts in the Caribbean for vet school. Dr. Hecht graduated from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in 2014, with her clinical year at Oregon State, always with the idea of house calls in mind. She is very excited to be a member of the HousePaws Team and bringing mobile medicine to the Bucks County/Philadelphia area. In her free time, Dr. Hecht enjoys spending time with her 2 Kittian dogs, known as “coconut retrievers,” and 4 cats as well as geocaching and traveling.
Dr. Eddie grew up in Moorestown, New Jersey with his beloved dog Presto, cat Penelope and guinea pigs Conrad and Shadow. It has always been his dream to become a veterinarian so that he could help animals and the people who love them. As a teenager, he enjoyed volunteering at the AWA animal shelter in Voorhees and at a Petsmart cat adoption center in Mt. Laurel.
Dr. Coleman grew up in Baton Rouge, LA. She grew up riding horses and volunteering in animal shelters so veterinary medicine was always her dream career. She attended University of Maryland in College Park, MD and majored in animal sciences. After college she headed to Virginia Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, VA for veterinary school. During veterinary school she enjoyed all aspects of companion animal medicine but is especially interested in internal medicine, urology, and preventative care.
Dr. Coleman currently lives in Philadelphia with her rescue dog named Tank. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and camping with her dog, running, exploring Philadelphia, and volunteering with animal rescue groups. She is very excited to join the House Paws team!