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Meet the Physical Rehabilitation Team
Jennifer Palmer, DVM, CCRT, Staff Veterinarian Physical Rehabilitation
Dr. Palmer is a veterinarian who is also certified to practice physical rehabilitation. She received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2011. Jenny has worked in general practice for multiple years. During that time, she became a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist through the Canine Rehabilitation Institute. After certification, Jenny developed the physical rehabilitation program at her general practice until moving to MSPCA-Angell West to initiate the Angell Physical Rehabilitation program with Amy Straut, DVM, CCRT.
Dr. Straut is a Massachusetts native and a graduate of the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. With a particular interest in pain management, Dr. Straut received her Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT) certification in 2011. Prior to joining the Angell-West Rehabilitation Team, Dr. Straut practiced small animal general medicine at a progressive canine wellness facility in the Boston area, where she developed a rehabilitation service. Dr. Straut is a New Englander at heart and enjoys the beach and hiking trails, during all seasons, with her young English Lab, “Birdie.”
AnnieJoy is a certified veterinary technician and became part of the Angell Physical Rehab team in December 2018. AnnieJoy graduated from Mount Ida College with an Associate’s Degree in 2018 and from the University of Massachusetts with a Bachelor’s degree in 2019 both in Veterinary Technology. Before joining Angell, AnnieJoy worked in general practice and has volunteered at local animal shelters and aquariums, but has fallen in love with the rehabilitation specialty. While not at work, AnnieJoy likes to hike and travel as well as spend time with her 5 year old yellow lab named Auggie (who also loves to come to Angell and swim!).
Heidi Erickson, Physical Rehabilitation Aide
Heidi grew up in Portland Oregon, attended undergrad in Biology at Pacific Lutheran University and got her Master’s in Physical Therapy at University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). She has worked in Human Physical Therapy in Acute Care and Rehabilitation settings in Seattle, Philadelphia, Boston and Providence. She has a background in human aquatic therapy and excited to transition to Canine Rehabilitation. Outside of work she enjoys gardening, knitting, swimming with her 2 dogs, Griffy and Dora , and caring for her chickens and honeybees with her husband and adult children.
Cassie graduated from Colorado State University in 2005 with her BS in Equine Sciences. After a few years teaching beginner riding lessons and working full time in other industries she went back to school at UNH for a degree in Veterinary Technology and obtained her CVT license in 2017. She is currently working towards her CCRP certification from the University of Tennessee. She is also certified in canine kinesiology taping by Angel’s Animals- Holistic Seminars. In her free time she likes to go for gentle hikes, watch movies, and spend time with friends and family.
Alyse Luurtsema, Pet Rehabilitation Aide
Alyse has been working in the animal care field since 2009, starting as a dog walker and canine daycare attendant in Boston’s South End. Through the years, she has taken courses and received certifications in canine massage, pet first aid, and CPR, and as a behavioral training aide. Alyse has spent the last 7 years working as a lead Canine Aquatics Specialist in Boston, running a hydrotherapy program and catering to dogs of all sizes and conditions from introduction, to swim, to medical cases, to endurance swims with working and police dogs. Wanting to learn more about the ever-expanding animal physical therapy world, she enrolled in Penn Foster’s Veterinary Technician program making Dean’s List in her first semester. She is currently enrolled and working toward her Certified Canine Rehabilitation Aide certification (CCRA). In August of 2017, Alyse became a part of the Angell family as a Physical Rehabilitation Aide. In her free time, Alyse volunteers with a local rescue group, fosters handicapped and senior dogs, boards medical and non-medical dogs in her home, and runs RudeBoots Studio where she paints pet portraits and memorial portraits with ashes incorporated. At home, Alyse has 3 rescue dogs of her own; Manny, an 11-year old grumpy Puggle, Lola, a 9-year-old beautiful blue-eyed Boston Terrier/French Bulldog mix, and Ruca, a – year-old sassy terrier mix. Feel free to say “Hi” when you see her around Angell West Physical Therapy, as she is always excited for a good conversation and ready to give tons of love to your wonderful pets!
Gabby began working in the veterinary field in 2010 after high school in upstate New York. From there she went to Mount Ida College for Veterinary Technology and became a CVT soon after graduating. Gabby has worked in general practice and at the aquarium but began working at Angell in 2019 in the oncology department, she has grown to love the physical rehabilitation side of medicine. She is currently working towards her CCRP certification from the University of Tennessee. Gabby lives in Boston with her husband, two dogs, and two special needs cats.
Jess graduated from Becker College with her BS in pre-veterinary science and has been a certified veterinary technician for four years. While still in school she began working at Angell’s Boston location in 2011 as a veterinary assistant taking care of hospitalized patients, and eventually became an emergency/critical care technician. In 2019 she joined the Physical Rehab Team at Angell West and it quickly became her favorite department to work in. When she is not working Jess loves to travel and spend time with her family including her two dogs and cat, Walter, Scout, and Cheese.
Nicole Votano, Physical Rehabilitation Aide
Nicole graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in Veterinary Technology in 2019. Before starting at Angell in July of 2020, she worked in general practice for 5 years, where she gained a lot of experience; but ever since doing an internship here at Angell West in physical rehab, she knew this is where she wanted to be! Before working in the veterinary field, Nicole worked at a pet store and did dog walking, she knew she wanted to work with animals from a young age. In her free time, she likes to travel and spend time with family and friends. She also loves to spend time with her family dog, Marcel, a 7-year-old Golden Retriever who is quite the prince. Nicole looks forward to meeting and taking care of all of your wonderful pets!