Dr. Philip Nelson was born and raised in Minnesota. He grew up in the western suburbs and has always been interested in animals. "It seems the injured ones always ended up at my house." He graduated with his DVM from the University of Minnesota in 1972.
In December of 1976 he bought a veterinarian business, which was then located in a storefront near 25th street and Central Avenue northeast. Later, he moved his veterinary hospital to its current location on Central Avenue Northeast and it has been there for 33 years. Dr. Nelson enjoys overseeing a staff of skilled veterinarians and is highly dedicated to his clients. He believes in a practical and common sense approach to Veterinary Medicine and has never talked anyone into spending money that they should not spend. "I believe that if you take care of people, they will take care of you."
For Dr. Nelson, The welfare of the pet has always come first. "I try to do the best that I can and treat them as I would my own."
Dr. Nelson spends his free time with his family. Two of his seven children ski race in the winter, and he enjoys racing homing pigeons in the summer. Dr. Nelson has a cat, 6 chickens and 150 homing pigeons.
Dr. Hilary Faas grew up in Southeastern Minnesota on a small hobby farm where she developed her love of animals. Dr. Faas started working at Pet Central in 2000 as a technician prior to attending Ross University in St. Kitts in 2008. She graduated in 2012 and has come back to Pet Central as a doctor and enjoys seeing all the familiar faces. Her interests include ophthalmology and internal medicine and loves all animals with flat faces.
Dr. Faas lives in South Minneapolis with her husband Isaac, her daughter Eleanor, 2 dogs (Nugget and Bruce) and 3 chickens. In her free time, Dr. Faas enjoys playing her oboe, reading, painting, traveling and being outdoors.
Dr. John Dirksen grew up on a farm in Iowa where he developed a strong passion for animals. He graduated from Iowa State University in 2001, returned to school and received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Minnesota in 2011.
Dr. Dirksen has a special interest in preventative medicine, surgery, and dentistry.
He lives in New Brighton with his family and their two Labrador Retrievers, “Jade” and “Ria”. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family and friends, training his dogs and doing anything outdoors including running, gardening, hunting, and visiting the family farm.
Dr. Mary Ngo is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Ngo has special interest in avian and exotic medicine. She lives in the Twin Cities area with her Husband, two Daughters, and all her pets (Dogs and many parrots). Outside of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Ngo loves to quilt, scrapbook, and garden.
If it fits, it sits! Dr. Cally Devitt graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2016 and immediately began working at Pet Central. Dr. Devitt had briefly worked as a technician with us while attending school back in 2013. Her interests include preventative care, and internal medicine.
Dr. Devitt has 3 dogs, Stanley, Gracie, and Harvey; 2 cats, Lirall and Mogget; as well as a leopard gecko named Mr. Wizard. In her free time Dr. Devitt enjoys reading, playing outside, going to concerts and theatre events, traveling, and brunch!
Tina is one of our Practice Managers and Veterinary Technicians. She graduated from the Minnesota School of Business- St. Cloud in 2007 and has been with Pet Central since 2013.
Tina enjoys puzzles, watching horror movies and reading horror books, playing video games, and spending time with her pets. She has 3 cats, Dasha, Kitti, and Francisco, and 2 dogs, a black lab mix named Mr. Murphy, and a Chihuahua named Taco Burrito.
Fall is her favorite season, but she loves them all. Tina enjoys wearing fun scrub tops for all the Holidays!
Jessica is one of Pet Central's Practice Managers. She graduated from Arizona State University in June 2018 and joined our team in September 2018.
When not spending time with her son Brady, Jessica enjoys playing sand volleyball in the summer, snowboarding in the winter, and shopping year round. She has 2 calico cats named Lucy and Minnie.
Michelle is the Lead Certified Veterinary Technician. She grew up in Roseville, MN and graduated from Rochester Community and Technical College in 2009. Michelle has been with Pet Central since 2011.
Michelle enjoys going up to the cabin, bowling, swimming, fishing, playing yard games, going to concerts, watching movies (especially horror) and photography.
Michelle lives in Saint Paul with her husband Nic, their pug/french bulldog mix named Khaleesi, a pug/min pin mix named Benelli, and a mini rex rabbit named Podrick.
Gina - Certified Veterinary Technician
Gina graduated from Argosy in 2012 and has been with Pet Central since 2014.
She enjoys horseback riding, swimming, hanging out with friends, and playing with her Niece and Nephew.
Gina has a Papillon named Bella, a Standard Poodle named Oliver, a Bearded Dragon named Norbert, and 2 cats; Mikko, and Francine.
Breanna - Veterinary Technician
Breanna graduated from The Minnesota School of Business in 2013 and has been with Pet Central since 2015.
In her spare time she enjoys watching movies, scrapbooking, and spending time with her son.
Breanna has a Shepherd/husky mix named Ruby, and 2 cats, Felix, and Layla.
Vanessa - Certified Veterinary Technician
Vanessa joined our team in January of 2017 and graduated in March 2017 from The Minnesota School of Business.
In her free time, Vanessa likes long walks along the river and sleeping, she is a total love bug!
Vanessa has a dog named Stella, a rat named Bianca, and a bearded dragon named Chicken.
Hannah - Veterinary Technician
Hannah joined the Pet Central team in July of 2018. She is currently taking classes through Penn Foster College and usually spends most of her free time studying to become one of our Certified Techs! Hannah's hobbies include knitting, baking, drawing, and watching television.
Hannah pets include her 2 dogs: Daisy Mae and Squiggles and her 3 cats: Munchie, Mr. Beans, and Walnut.
Leighton - Veterinary Technician
Leighton is currently attending Argosy University and joined the Pet Central team in January 2018. She enjoys playing video games, reading, spending time with her family, and playing with her pet rats. She is known for always rocking the best hair in the clinic.
Her pets include 2 corn snakes: Chaos and Iris, a leopard gecko: Caribou, and her two rats Cloud and Cecil.
Meggan - Certified Veterinary Technician
Meggan graduated from The Minnesota School of Business in 2013 with a degree in Veterinary Technology and became a CVT in August 2013. She joined the Pet Central team in June of 2016.
Not only does she make an impact on the lives of animals here at Pet Central, Meggan also volunteers with Safe Hands Rescue. In her free time, she enjoys shopping, napping with her dogs, and ice cream taste testing with her dog Gracie.
Meggan's pets include her dog Gracie, a revolving door of small foster dogs, and a betta fish named Merle.
Alexis - Veterinary Technician
Alexis graduated from Ridgewater College in May 2018 and joined the Pet Central team in July 2018. Growing up, Alexis was passionate about taking care of others, especially those without a voice like our furry friends. She plans on earning her certification this year and dedicating her life to learning medicine and providing the best care to everyone she meets, animals included.
Alexis has 3 cats: Miss Lacey, Jax, and Joanie. In her free time, Alexis enjoys hanging out with her family, crafting, and playing the ukulele.
Chelsea - Veterinary Technician
Chelsea joined the Pet Central Team in March of 2018. She has 2 cats: Whisper and Brutus, 1 dog: Lola, and her neighborhood squirrel: Peanut. Chelsea is a talented writer who enjoys writing original fiction and she is typically seen writing her own book while on her lunch break. Chelsea helped write, edit, direct, and film a movie while also starring in two of the roles.
Toni has been at Pet Central Animal Hospital since 2004. She attended Hennepin Technical College where she earned a degree as a Health Unit Coordinator in 1995.
Toni was always around animals growing up and was typically seen bringing home a local stray. "I just knew I had to work with animals."
When Toni isn't multi-tasking at Pet Central, she likes to play disc golf for fun with her family. She also enjoys fishing, biking and baking. She and her family consider themselves pizza connoisseurs. Toni has two cats named Jack and Socks.
Kim joined the Pet Central team in fall of 2018, but has always had a passion for animals. She has trained and worked with dogs since she was 7 years old and particular loves the "smush face" breeds!
Kim has two dogs: Stu and Pablo, who she loves hanging out with. Kim also enjoys going for walks with doing crafts with her family.
Suzie is one of our groomers who has been with Pet Central since 2011. She is currently in the process of obtaining her Environmental Science degree.
Suzie enjoys photography, drawing, bike riding, hiking, playing with her pets, and taking nature walks with them. Suzie has a lab/golden retriever mix named Loki, and a DLH cat named Uncle Mike. Most of her extra curricular activities she enjoys allow her to include her dog. She has been studying dogs for as long as she's been able to read!
Oksanna is not only one of Pet Central's Groomers, but she is also one of our Veterinary Technicians! Oksanna has been with Pet Central since May of 2016. She enjoys going to NHRA Drag Races and has been spectating them since she was 5 years old. She has been a PCA for 5 years and enjoys helping others in her free time.Interestingly enough, she shares her birthday with Dr. Seuss.
Oksanna has 3 dogs: Nugget, Milton, and Magoo as well as four cats: Binx, Leia, Ash, and Titan.
Sierra mastered the art of Grooming in 2016 from Pucci Pet Career Studios and joined the Pet Central team in January of 2017.
She not only grooms dogs, but also bunnies! Sierra has 2 dogs: Bianca and Tia, a hedgehog named Spike, and a hamster named Macy.
She enjoys traveling, hanging out with her friends, spending time with family, and listening to music in her free time. Fun fact: Her birthday is on April fools!
Lydia is an African grey parrot. African grey parrots are considered by experts to be one of the smartest birds. Because of their gentle nature and ability to mimic speech they have become quite popular as pets. African grey parrots may be the best talkers of all birds as they can easily learn hundreds of words and sounds. A male African grey parrot named Prudle is in the Guiness Book of World Records having a vocabulary of over one thousand words.
African grey parrots have been kept for pets for thousands of years. The Egyptians, known for their belief that the cat was sacred, are thought to be the first to keep African grey parrots and are said to have depicted them in their hieroglyphics. The Greeks also valued the African grey parrot as did the Romans who kept them in ornate cages. Even King Henry VIII of England kept one as a pet.
Lydia isn't actually a staff member but she adds a pleasurable ambiance to the already positive environment of Pet Central Animal Hospital. Come in to Pet Central Animal Hospital and see Lydia. She might just greet you with a surprising "hello."