BEING ADMITTED TO THE PROFESSION OF VETERINARY MEDICINE, I SOLEMNLY SWEAR TO USE MY SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS FOR THE BENEFIT OF SOCIETY THROUGH THE PROTECTION OF ANIMAL HEALTH, THE RELIEF OF ANIMAL SUFFERING, THE CONSERVATION OF LIVESTOCK RESOURCES, THE PROMOTION OF PUBLIC HEALTH AND THE ADVANCEMENT OF MEDICAL KNOWLEDGE. I WILL PRACTICE MY PROFESSION CONSCIENTIOUSLY, WITH DIGNITY, AND IN KEEPING WITH THE PRINCIPLES OF VETERINARY MEDICAL ETHICS. I ACCEPT AS A LIFELONG OBLIGATION THE CONTINUAL IMPROVEMENT OF MY PROFESSIONAL KNOWLEDGE AND COMPETENCE.
ADOPTED BY THE AVMA HOUSE OF DELEGATES, JULY 1969
Kurt Mychajlonka, D.V.M.
As a young boy Dr. Mychajlonka knew that he wanted to become a veterinarian. This childhood dream of veterinary medicine led him from his home town of Nanty Glo, Pennsylvania, to Phoenix, Arizona, where he completed his undergraduate training at Northern Arizona University.
Dr. Mychajlonka has been a fixture at Craig Road Animal Hospital since it’s founding in 1996 and is fondly known by many of his clients as “Dr. Mych”. He serves as attending veterinarian to the Nevada Task Force search and rescue dogs. In the past he has also served as president of the Nevada Veterinary Medical Association. Dr. Mych earned his D.V.M. at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana in 1993. During his college years, he worked at a small animal emergency hospital and an equine surgical center, which fostered his interest in high quality, cutting edge veterinary care.
Dr. Mych’s veterinary interests include general and orthopedic surgery, advanced dental procedures and laparoscopic procedures. In his leisure time, he enjoys the outdoors, fishing, photography and reading. Dr. Mych resides in Las Vegas with his wife Debbie, also a veterinarian, and two adopted children: Nikki, a beautiful Bouvier Des Flanders, and Boss, a Shih-poo-kie.
Cathy Whitcraft, D.V.M.
Dr. Cathleen Whitcraft has been at Craig Road Animal Hospital since 2004. Prior to becoming a veterinarian, her background included a degree in Business finance and a career with U.S. Treasury Department. After participating in a dolphin research vacation, she discovered her interest in animal medicine. Later, she went on to earn her biology degree and her D.V.M. from Colorado State University. Her special practice interests include internal medicine, endocrine disease, cardiology, and ophthalmology.
Dr. Whitcraft is active with community outreach and participating in Career Day talks at local schools, inspiring others to pursuing a veterinary career. Dr. Whitcraft has two birds, two cats and a batch of Bichon Frise and Poodles that consume much of her love. Besides her household of critters, she enjoys world travel including all over Europe, Australia, and the Caribbean. Her favorite leisure activities are scuba diving, biking, climbing trees and reading.
Orlena Tampira, D.V.M.
Dr. Orlena Tampira is a skilled veterinarian that came to our hospital from Louisiana. She is a graduate of Loyola University and received her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Louisiana State University in 2007.
Dr. Tampira has worked with our local English Bulldog rescue as well as Colossal Canine Care to ensure overall health prior to placement in foster homes. She has also worked with the Nevada Task Force dogs to ensure the animals were fit for their search and rescue work. Dr. Tampira practiced Judo before moving to Las Vegas, competing regularly and even being awarded the title of State Champion a few times. Her passion for Judo also led her to instruct under-privileged public school children for a non-profit organization.
At work, Dr. Tampira’s interests are soft tissue and laparoscopic surgery, as well as caring for large and giant dog breeds. Her family includes her husband, two children, three English bulldogs, one French bulldog and two cats.
Courtney Daniels, D.V.M.
A Midwesterner by birth, Dr. Courtney Daniels came to Craig Road Animal Hospital from Dyer, Indiana. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Butler University located in Indianapolis, Indiana and then earned her D.V.M. from Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine. Always with a sunny personality and her infectious laugh, Dr. Daniels is loved by her clientele- both paws and people. Her veterinary interests are in the areas of endocrinology, oncology and general surgery. Her personal interests include sports, hiking and travel.
Dr. Daniels has a diverse family that includes a Weimeraner named Baron, a Labrador retriever named Peyton, a Great Dane named Rigley and a Himalayan cat named Sebastian.
Jennifer Finder, D.V.M.
Dr. Finder grew up in Maryland outside of Washington D.C. She attended the University of Maryland College Park where she received a bachelor’s degree in animal and avian science. Dr. Finder received her doctorate in veterinary medicine from Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. Before graduating from vet school she worked in small animal practices in Nevada and in Maryland as a veterinary technician. Before vet school she also worked in a wildlife rehabilitation facility, where she cared for an array of animals including squirrels, snapping turtles, and rabbits.
Dr. Finder is interested in most areas of general practice and surgery. In her spare time, Dr. Finder enjoys playing sports, cooking, and traveling. She has visited several countries including Canada, Mexico, Israel, Spain, Costa Rica and India. She has had two opportunities to study abroad, in Costa Rica and India. Her adventurous spirit took her through a suspension bridge in Costa Rica, while studying sustainable ecosystems there, where she remembers the bridge cable snapping while she crossed it! In India she worked with stray animals, and gained a great deal of experience in infectious diseases and the importance of vaccination. The highlight of this experience was working with Indian elephants, which she fondly remembers as “Mostly playing with baby elephants.”
Dr. Finder has been a member of our staff since 2013. When she is not dedicating herself to her patients she is caring for her mischievous cat, which she adopted after becoming her foster pet. She has a very sweet tuxedo colored cat named Jane of the Jungle whom she describes as very “inquisitive, and gets into everything!”
Tiffany Major, D.V.M.
Tiffany Major D.V.M. has wanted to work with animals for as long as she can remember. She started early, taking her first job at a hospital while still a junior in high school. Dr. Major worked as a veterinary technician for ten years at Pembroke Animal Hospital. During this time she also started on her undergrad at the University of New Hampshire.
Searching for a warmer climate, she went to Ross University for her graduate in St. Kitts, West Indies, where she rescued her island dog, Dexter, a Shih Tzu mix. Her other baby, is an adorable Yorkie named Darby and a bit of a troublemaker.
Dr. Major then went on to complete her clinical year at the University of Missouri where she was introduced to Craig Road Animal Hospital through our externship program. A self-proclaimed “professional student” the doctor found her way back to New Hampshire where she practiced at a 24-hour emergency advanced care veterinary hospital for a year.
Dr. Major enjoys her job because she has the chance to return the unconditional love that animals share with others. “To be able to help a pet is one of the greatest things that someone can do,” Dr. Major said. “They’re always there for us so being there for them just makes me happy.”
Elizabeth Ashman, D.V.M.
Hailing from Oak Ridge, New Jersey, Elizabeth Ashman, DVM was introduced to us through our externship program over the summer of 2015. After graduating from Ross University in September 2015, our new Associate Veterinarian is now looking forward to calling Las Vegas her new home.
Concentrating on general practice and internal medicine, Dr. Ashman said that working in the field is one of her true passions and finds it to be extremely rewarding. She loves working on all animals and has even worked with big cats like snow leopards and lions at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse, New York.
Dr. Ashman also understands how animals can be a very important member of a family. “It’s nice to not only make a difference to the animal itself but also to the clients,” Dr. Ashman said.
With three dogs of her own, she said that she feels proud to be able to work with such a supportive staff. Dr. Ashman is excited to start her career; “It’s such a great opportunity,” she said. “I’m looking forward to advancing my knowledge in medicine and surgery which are the areas that I’m most interested in.”
Ukachi Ugorji, D.V.M.
Dr. Ukachi Ugorji has always had an interest in taking care of animals, from a young age she knew that she wanted to pursue a career in the medical field. In the spring of 2016, she graduated from the University of Georgia with a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine. However, this isn’t her first experience with Craig Road Animal Hospital, she was part of our extern program in 2015.
She says that because animals can’t necessarily speak up, owners should try to bring their pet in for professional care. “It’s important that people know the value of having a physician examine your pet on a regular basis,” she said. “Specifically preventative care as a focus. Detecting things before something happens and talking to a professional can save a lot of animals.”
At home, Dr. Ugorji has two standard poodles and a flame point Siamese cat that keep her company.
Emilee Larkin, D.V.M.
Emilee Larkin, D.V.M., is a graduate fromTexas A&M’s College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, where she also attended for her undergraduate studies.
Over the past few years Dr. Larkin had gained experience from her involvement in numerous externships, most notably her experiences in St. Kitts,
West Indies and Africa. Her main professional interests are large exotic animals, internal medicine, and diagnostics.
Dr. Larkin enjoys time with a few four-legged friends of her own, a Rottweiler named Riddick, a Bluetick Coonhound named River, and her cat Orion. When she isn’t caring for animals, Dr. Larkin enjoys weaving, reading, and hiking in her spare time.
Erica F. Monaco, D.V.M, MSPH, cVMA
Dr. Erica Monaco was born and raised in Las Vegas, NV and obtained most of her undergraduate education while serving in the U.S. Army abroad. She received her BS and DVM degrees from Colorado State University and completed a Master of Science in Public Health at the University of Colorado Denver. Dr. Monaco is passionate about holistic medicine, which is why she became certified in Veterinary Medical Acupuncture. “I integrate traditional and non-traditional approaches to medicine in order to provide high-quality, evidence based veterinary care to my patients.” Her professional interests include emergency medicine, small and large animal acupuncture, internal medicine, and public health outreach and education.
Upon graduation from CSU’s veterinary program, Dr. Monaco moved to Rapid City, SD where she worked as an emergency veterinarian and later started Animal Wellness Veterinary Service, a mobile acupuncture and laser therapy practice. She returned to full time Emergency medicine in 2014 and has worked at specialty practices in Colorado and Las Vegas. When asked why she has made the transition to general practice she explains, “What I am missing in emergency medicine is getting to follow up with the patients I have treated and having the opportunity to build lasting relationships with their care givers.” Dr. Monaco is excited to be involved in the long term medical care of her patients and utilizing her acupuncture certification to offer integrative pain management therapies at Craig Road Animal Hospital.
Dr. Monaco is thrilled to be back in Las Vegas along with her two 4-legged children, Faith, a 12yr husky mix and Sable, a 5yr feline. In her free time she enjoys salsa dancing, golfing, scuba diving, traveling, and cheering for the Denver Broncos.
Andrew Koenitzer, D.V.M.
Andrew Koenitzer, DVM, comes to Craig Road Animal Hospital with years of experience in emergency medicine. He received his undergrad from the University of Minnesota and later graduated with his DVM from his home state of Wisconsin.
“I started as an undergrad pursuing a major in Wildlife, after trying the pre-veterinary program I realized that studying medicine was going to be my passion.” Dr. Koenitzer said. “The challenge and complexity of it got really addicting.”
Dr. Koenitzer practiced emergency medicine for three years in California before joining our team, his veterinary interests are focused in small animal medicine, emergency surgery, and dentistry. More recently, he has become more involved in the field ultrasound and plans to further pursue his new interest at Craig Road.
Dr. Koenitzer has a domestic long hair cat named Peter, in his spare time he enjoys playing basketball, swimming, cycling, and traveling.
Tifanie Silver, D.V.M.
Tifanie Silver, D.V.M., received both her Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of Arkansas Fayetteville, and later attended Tuskegee University in Alabama where she graduated with her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine.
Over the past few years, Dr. Silver participated in numerous externship programs gaining experience in Texas, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Maryland, as well as her home state of Hawaii. “At first I wanted to become a Dolphin trainer at Sea Life Park in Hawaii, but as time went on it evolved into this desire to help all kinds of animals.”
Currently, she aspires to become more involved in the zoo, exotic, and aquatic fields of veterinary medicine. In her spare time Dr. Silver enjoys photography, graphic design, quilting, and photography. She has a former racing greyhound, a rescued husky mix, two cats from Arkansas, three snakes, and a Sulcata tortoise named “Spartacus”.