Unleashing Innovation in Pet Health
WHETHER YOU LIVE in Old Mandeville or frequent it on a regular basis, you’ve undoubtedly seen people walking or running, sipping coffee or grabbing a beer or cocktail—many of them accompanied by their four-legged friends. Nestled along the main thoroughfare of this pet-friendly community, among historic residences, boutiques and restaurants, lies Mandeville Animal Hospital.
Taken by the charm of the area and touched by the residents’ passion for their pets, Dr. Liza Ledet specifically chose the location on Girod Street to build her veterinary practice. Over the past two years, she has painstakingly created an environment that complements the area in both design and function.
“Our natural resources and beautiful scenery are conducive to a healthy lifestyle, and that lifestyle also applies to our pets,” she said. “Mandeville Animal Hospital strives to do more than take care of pets when they are ill. We also integrate proactive treatment plans and holistic approaches to prevent illness in the first place.”
Graduating at the top of her class from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Ledet’s philosophy is to practice excellent medicine in an environment that works for both pets and their owners. She takes pride in her thorough approach to medicine, which she says is constantly progressing.
“We involve our clients in the overall care of their pets, taking into account their specific desires regarding healthcare and nutrition. We develop customized treatment plans merging their needs and goals with my own knowledge and experience,” Dr. Ledet said.
Just as with human immunizations, there is some debate regarding the frequency and necessity of vaccinations for dogs and cats. For clients who are concerned about vaccines, Dr. Ledet will often run titers (blood tests) to check a pet’s immunity to confirm if a booster is even necessary. “I want my clients to be comfortable with and well educated about their pets medical decisions,” explains Dr. Ledet.
In order to provide the absolute safest and best care, Dr. Ledet sought out Dr. Ashley Geoghegan (Dr. G) of VetNaturally to perform her specialty services at Mandeville Animal Hospital. The two work in tandem to provide a superior approach to healthcare. By combining integrative veterinary medical services, such as acupuncture, herbal medicine, essential oils and food therapy, along with conventional medicine, they provide a unique opportunity for their patients. “My goal is to practice safe and effective medicine. A good example is my arthritis patient. If I can utilize everything in my hospital to lower their dosages of potentially toxic Western pain medications, it’s a win for me and for them.”
Also offering boarding and grooming services, the practice consists of a caring staff who are attentive and in tune with needs of the pets. “We work to make patients as comfortable as possible and to give their owners the peace of mind that we are providing true, loving care,” Dr. Ledet explained. “As stressful as it is for pets to be away from home, it is also stressful for their owners. We try to accommodate special requests whenever possible to help ease anxiety for both pet and owner. “One of the things we are really proud of is our 8 p.m. walk. This late night walk assures your pet a comfortable overnight stay in a clean, calm environment. We also diffuse specially blended VetNaturally essential oils to promote relaxation and wellness within the hospital,” explains Dr. Ledet.
Originally from Pennsylvania, Dr. Ledet moved to Louisiana to attend veterinary school at LSU. During Hurricane Katrina, she and her dog Rocco (then a young puppy) helped set up a rescue center on the school’s campus. This experience, coupled with her love of the many outdoor activities and unique culture, bonded her to the area. When she decided to open her own practice, she knew she wanted to locate it in a place where she felt most as home. That place was Mandeville.
Since opening Mandeville Animal Hospital in November 2013, Dr. Ledet and her son Luke have taken full advantage of all the resources the Northshore has to offer—with their beloved Rocco in tow.
Both the interior and the exterior of the building are a testament to Dr. Ledet’s love of her adopted hometown. Its cottage façade and large porch open to a space filled with custom furniture, artwork and accessories, all created by local artisans and craftspeople. Exam rooms—named Pontchartrain, French Quarter and Atchafalaya—contain custom pieces reflecting each of their themes.
Rustic charm meets state-of-the-art technology in the clinic’s surgical suite where Dr. Ledet performs an array of surgeries including spays and neuters, biopsies, dentals, tumor removal and routine soft tissue surgery. The hospital also houses a digital x-ray machine and a full scope of laboratory and diagnostic equipment.
Dr. Ledet is very involved in the community, explaining that as a business owner, she feels it is important to establish a meaningful connection with the people who live and work in the area. She built her own practice from the ground up and has worked endless hours to make it successful. Starting without an existing clientele, she has grown to 1,000 clients and over 1,500 patients in less than two years. She is also a board member of the Old Mandeville Business Association, and participates in the St. Tammany West Chamber of Commerce and Northshore Rising Professionals. “I feel embraced by the community and am grateful for its support,” Dr. Ledet said.
The practice regularly partners with other local businesses and sponsors many fitness-related activities, including dog races and events, where their mascot, “Saint”, can be found bringing smiles to children’s faces. As a group fitness instructor, Dr. Ledet understands how vital it is for people to live an active lifestyle. She believes that living a healthy lifestyle goes hand-in-hand with having a pet, especially a dog. In addition to the physical benefits, both pets and their owners receive emotional benefits from enjoying time together.
Dr. Ledet also volunteers her time to work with several pet rescue groups throughout the area. She hosts several adoption days throughout the year.
During college, Dr. Ledet took a part-time job at a vet’s office where she fell in love with veterinary medicine. “I had always been a pet lover, but never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be a veterinarian with my own practice. I love my job and the Northshore. This really is my dream come true.”
Mandeville Animal Hospital is located at 419 Girod Street in Mandeville. For more information, call 985-377-0800 or visit mandevilleah.com.