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OUR TEAM

Dr. Peter Erling and Dr. Michelle Lorenzen

Dr. Peter Erling and
Dr. Michelle Lorenzen

Dr. Peter Erling and Dr. Michelle Lorenzen met while in veterinary school at Texas A&M University, graduating together in 2003. They have been virtually inseparable ever since.

Originally from South Africa, Dr. Peter also holds a Bachelor's Degree in Molecular Biology from the University of Texas at Dallas. Following vet school, he completed a 1-year internship and a 3-year residency in Emergency and Critical Care. Peter was a faculty member at Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine and was a member of the Michael E. Debakey veterinary cardiothoracic bypass team.

Prior to entering veterinary school, Dr. Michelle obtained a Master's Degree in Anthropology, studying apes and monkeys around the world. Dr. Peter and Dr. Michelle adopted numerous geriatric and ailing pets during vet school. Early on, they recognized that their own pets were more comfortable and at ease when transitioning at home. Dr. Michelle and Dr. Peter founded Choice Veterinary Care in order to provide caring and compassionate in-home euthanasia to pet owners in Los Angeles.
Dr. Peter Erling and Dr. Michelle Lorenzen

Dr. Amy Stillwell-Graiff and
Brad Graiff

Dr. Amy Stillwell-Graiff and her husband, Brad Graiff, partnered with Choice shortly after its founding.

Dr. Amy began her studies by earning a BS in Biology at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. She went on to graduate with honors as valedictorian from the Atlantic Veterinary College, earning her DVM. She then completed a 1-year internship at the VCA WLA Animal Hospital, focused in small animal surgery and medicine. Since that time, she has continued in general practice with a strong interest in volunteer work. Her many loyal clients often speak of her exceptional bedside manner and compassion for others.

Mr. Graiff earned his BS in Accounting/Finance at the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign. He went on to practice accounting for 10 years before advancing into a successful career in acting and modeling. A lifelong animal lover, he adopted a puppy several years ago who was diagnosed with Parvovirus. After a long hospital stay under the care of Dr. Amy, the puppy survived. The couple quickly fell in love and they were happily married a year later. Brad is currently CFO for Choice
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Anne-Marie Reikes, DVM

Dr. Anne-Marie Reikes is a native of Southern California. She has always had a great love of animals and at a young age earned her Girl Scout Gold Award for organizing an animal adoption event. She pursued her undergraduate studies at both UC Davis and Loyola Marymount University, then in 2007 was part of the inaugural graduating class of Western University of Health Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine. After graduation, she worked in small animal general medicine for over 13 years, building lasting relationships with her clients and patients. Starting in 2016, she began working part time with Hearts and Halos, but in 2021 she left general medicine to focus fulltime on assisting pets in having a peaceful end-of -life experiences with Hearts and Halos. 

In her spare time, Dr. Anne-Marie Reikes enjoys spending time with her family outdoors camping, hiking, skiing and surfing. She enjoys spending time with her many family pets including her dog, Hunter, two cats, Queen Jillian and King Jet, a bearded dragon named Spike, a Russian tortoise and a snake.

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"MJ" Mellissa Jae, DVM

Dr MJ was born and raised on the east coast of Canada, in beautiful Nova Scotia. She went on to attend veterinary school at the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island. In 2006, after enduring many chilly Canadian winters, Dr MJ decided to move herself down to an even more beautiful place - Hawai’i! Dr MJ spent 9 wonderful years working at clinics on both the west side and east side of Oahu. She then discovered her passion for shelter medicine when she started volunteering at the Hawaiian Humane Society. Seeking new opportunities, Dr MJ moved once again to Los Angeles where she landed her dream job helping shelter pets and other animals who need the most care, in the heart of the city. Through the twists and turns of life, MJ eventually found herself working for Veterinary Public Health, exploring yet another side of veterinary medicine. 

Dr MJ also loves to travel, spend time at the beach, add to her crystal collection, and spend quality time with her two sweet boys, her hubby, three dogs (“Yoshi” the Mini Schnauzer, “Cali” the Pit Bull mix, & “Coal” the Irish Wolfhound), bearded dragon (“Jean-Luc”), and a school of lovely fish! She is honored to be a part-time veterinarian with Hearts & Halos, helping beloved pets transition in the most peaceful and serene way, surrounded by positive energy and love.   

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Susan Chao , DVM

Born and raised in Southern California, Dr. Susan grew up with a bevy of doggy siblings ranging from her family’s huge Doberman to the even larger German Shepherd to the fiercest leader of them all, the Pekingese (who routinely showed all who was boss). 

Dr. Susan started her journey towards veterinary medicine at UC Berkeley where she graduated with a degree in Molecular Cell Biology and Economics. Over time, she made her way back to Los Angeles where she rediscovered her love for animals. This became the foundation for her career in veterinary medicine as she elected to attend Western University of Health, School of Veterinary Medicine. For many years after graduation in 2012, Dr. Susan had the privilege of helping families and their pets in small animal general medicine. 

In 2021, Dr. Susan began to focus on helping families bring comfort and a peaceful passing to their beloved pets at home. She recognized that being present to witness the depth of the human animal bond during this time is a true honor. 

In her spare time, Dr. Susan enjoys spending time with her family, baking treats for her sugar-loving kids, and engaging in a battle of wills with her entirely too smart, troublemaking dog.  

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Jennifer Adelini, DVM

 Dr. Jennifer grew up in Southern California with many different pets, including dogs, cats, birds, and a horse. She began her undergraduate studies at University of California, Davis and began to consider a career in veterinary medicine when she heard about the UC Davis veterinary program. After visiting with her family veterinarian during a school break, Dr Jennifer decided this was the right path for her.   


Dr. Jennifer has always had a special interest in anesthesia and pain management, as well as dentistry and dermatology. She has worked in small animal private practice, public health, and served as the director for a veterinary technology program. Dr. Jennifer believes that a peaceful passing is the final gift we can offer our furry family members and is honored to be able to assist families in saying goodbye to their beloved pets in the comfort of their own home.  


Outside of veterinary medicine, Dr Jennifer enjoys singing and is happy to perform for anyone willing to listen. She loves spending time with her family which includes her husband, twin daughters, their dog (Daisy), and cats (Pounce and Gemma). 

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Bryce Affeld, DVM

Dr. Bryce was born and raised in Southern California. After attending, Orange Lutheran High School, he completed his undergraduate education at the University of California - Santa Barbara. Dr Bryce began his journey into veterinary medicine by accepting an offer to attend Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. Before graduating from veterinary school, he encountered two beautiful cats, Romulus and Remus, who fortunately chose him as their owner. Dr. Bryce has developed a fondness for emergency medicine and Chinese integrative medicine, including acupuncture, and enjoys combining western and eastern medical philosophies.

 Dr Bryce has recognized that euthanasia is important to him, as death is an end we will all face one day. Animals share the same fate, and Dr Bryce has realized it is in everyone’s best interest to help our pets pass as peacefully as possible. He has found a passion helping pet parents provide a loving end-of-life experience for their beautiful companions.

 Dr. Bryce enjoys being outside, surfing, snowboarding, and rollerblading/skating. He also enjoys going to concerts and rock-n-roll shows (in particular 60s, 70s, and 80s music). 

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Analucia Arredondo, DVM

Dr. Analucia was born and raised in San Diego where her natural love for animals flourished with trips to the San Diego Zoo, caring for her pets, and horseback riding lessons. After completing her undergraduate degree in Animal Science at Cal Poly Pomona, she accepted an offer to become part of the inaugural class at Midwestern University's College of Veterinary Medicine in Glendale, Arizona

Shortly after vet school graduation, Dr. Analucia decided to move back to Southern California to be close with her family where she practiced small animal general medicine as an Associate Veterinarian. It was during this time that she realized how special and important it was to guide families as they said goodbye to their pets. In 2021, Dr. Analucia transitioned to end-of-life veterinary medicine to provide dignified and compassionate care to the pets that need her most. She soon realized that being fluent in Spanish allowed her to connect with many families in even more special ways. 

In her free time, Dr. Analucia loves to play with her two silly dogs at home, watch movies and shows, and spend time with her family.   

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Sarah Haddy, DVM

Dr Sarah Haddy spent her early years in Louisville, Kentucky before educational pursuits led her north. She graduated from the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor after earning a BS in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. Dr Sarah returned south to receive her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. She finally ventured west, where she began her lifelong dream career as a small animal general practitioner in Los Angeles. 

 After experiencing the end-of-life of her own previous pets, Dr Sarah realized what an enormous impact it makes on our lives. She felt motivated by a desire to ease both animal and human suffering when guiding other pet owners through the same experience. She realized how beautiful it was for the pet to be able to kindly ease this transition in the comfort of their own familiar home with gentleness, patience, and grace. Driven to make the experience as peaceful and loving as possible, Dr Sarah decided to join the Hearts & Halos team. 

 Dr. Sarah still works part-time at a general practice, with special interests in geriatric care and dermatology. She is very honored to be able to give back to our furry family members who bring our lives so much joy, silliness, loyalty, and unconditional love. In her spare time, Dr. Haddy loves hiking with her two pups, Franklin and Penny, reading psychological thrillers, and traveling.

Aftercare Manager

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Meghan Ingstad, RVT

A Southern California native, Meghan was born and raised in Orange County. From a very young age, she knew she wanted to work with animals. As a 6-year-old girl, Meghan adopted her neighbor's pregnant cat, Pumpkin. With the help of her parents, she cared for several litters of kittens and found them forever homes. As a teenager, Meghan adopted a 7-year-old boxer named Arnold. Only a year after coming into Meghan's life, Arnold was diagnosed with cancer. He unfortunately lost his battle to survive 3 months later. Shortly after this difficult loss, Meghan was able to save the life of another boxer. Abby was only a year old when she was hit by a car and relinquished to an animal hospital, after her pet parents were unwilling to pay for treatment. Without hesitation, Meghan rescued Abby, nursed her back to health, and was repaid by 10 glorious years of unconditional love.
 
For 14 years, Meghan has been working in animal hospitals in Southern California.  She is a registered veterinary technician with specialty training in veterinary oncology. Through the years, Meghan has helped many grieving pet parents cope with the pain of losing a furry family member. She is honored to continue supporting pet parents through this difficult time by joining the Hearts & Halos team.
 
In her free time, Meghan enjoys baking cupcakes and visiting Disneyland. She also loves spending time with her 3 nieces, who fondly refer to Meghan as "Auntie Cupcake."

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