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Our Team

Our caring and compassionate veterinary care team!

Meet the Veterinarians of Sunrise Pet Clinic in Tucson! We’re pleased to provide exceptional vet care for your pets!

Please call us at 520-299-5044 to speak to one of our caring veterinary staff members!

Janet Forrer, DVM

Please note that Dr. Forrer is not able to accept new clients at this time.

I grew up in Oak Lawn, Illinois, near Chicago. Starting in 1982 I attended the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where I received a Bachelor's degree in 1986, a Master's degree in animal science in 1988, and then a Doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1992.

After graduation I moved to the Southwest to be closer to my parents who had moved to beautiful Arizona several years before me. My first professional veterinary assignment was in Gallup, New Mexico, which included driving a mobile veterinary clinic onto the Navajo Reservation every week for a two-day clinic. My stops included Chinle, Arizona just outside Canyon de Chelley and Kayenta, Arizona, near Monument Valley. I was veterinarian to cats and dogs as well as horses, sheep, goats and assorted wild animal there. However, advanced small animal medicine was my developing passion.

To follow my heart, I moved to Tucson. In my free time, I enjoy walking my dog Nic, gardening and bird watching. My hobbies reflect my love for the beautiful landscape of Arizona and I encourage efforts to protect our natural environment. I am fortunate to have been active in several animal protection movements in Arizona, including the 1998 ban on cockfighting, the 2006 ban on veal and gestation crates for pigs, as well as the recent legislation for racing Greyhounds in Arizona. I have also enjoyed volunteering at dog and cat vaccine clinics near South Tucson hosted by AWASA (Arizona Welfare Alliance of Southern Arizona) and spay/neuter clinics in our area too.

In 2001, I began training in acupuncture and herbal medicine through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (see acupuncture story from Arizona Daily Star, Aug. 9, 2007). In recent years, I have added advanced nutritional and whole food therapies to my practice. I find combining the fantastic advances of western medicine with the tremendous wealth of Traditional Chinese Medicine and modern alternative modalities is a wonderful way to foster health. This integrative approach is what I have been looking for my whole career. I want to share it with all those interested.

Stephanie Schneider, DVM

I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and earned a BA in Biology from Augustana College. I graduated from Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2011. Then I moved to Tucson and completed a small animal rotating internship at the Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson. I decided I could not leave the beautiful Arizona sunshine and in February, 2015 accepted a position at Sunrise Pet Clinic. I enjoy all aspects of veterinary medicine and am very excited to meet all of our wonderful clients and patients! In my free time, I enjoy hiking, being outdoors, and singing.

Abbey Kovarna, DVM

Dr. Abbey Kovarna is originally from Northwest Iowa. She obtained her bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University (Go Cyclones!) and then continued on with veterinary school at ISU graduating in 2009.

Following veterinary school, Abbey moved to Tucson to complete a one year rotating internship in small animal medicine, surgery and critical care at the Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson. Her primary interests include senior pet care, dentistry, and surgery.

Abbey is happily married to her husband Mike, and they have three young children - Kyndall, Kenzie, and Konnor. They share their home with two Golden Retrievers (Chloe and Moxie), a Bernese Mountain Dog (Cali), and one diabetic cat (Jolie).

In her spare time, Abbey enjoys spending time with her family and watching college basketball. She has greatly enjoyed the Tucson sun, as well as exploring the desert.

Melanie Olson, DVM

Born in rural Quebec, Canada, I grew up on a dairy farm. During this time, I developed an appreciation for animal care and realized early on my calling was to become a veterinarian. After graduating from the University of Montreal College of Veterinary Medicine in 2000, I moved to Phoenix and completed a one year internship at Sonora Veterinary Specialists. I fell in love with the Southwest and moved to Tucson a year later and have been here ever since.

In January of 2023 I joined the wonderful team at Sunrise Pet Clinic. I take pride and comfort in the fact that the clinic is locally owned. I am passionate about health and strive to help pet parents understand the examination findings and treatment plans, whether it be for preventive care or workup of a serious illness. It is a priority of mine to share knowledge with both staff and clients, working with them as a team to achieve a common goal of patient wellness.

When not at work, I enjoy spending time outdoors tending to my beloved desert plants, walking the dogs and reading. I share my home with my wonderful husband, Shane, and my beautiful fur babies, Cielo, Stella Luna and Petunia.

Lauren Thomas, DVM

I am a true Tucson native, growing up in the rural area of Marana. Living in the more rural
areas it was very easy for us to have a variety of animals including cats, dogs, chickens, quail, ducks, rabbits, goats and horses. I was deeply involved in 4-H through junior and high school and continued into collegiate 4-H at the University of Arizona. I obtained my Bachelors of Science in Microbiology at the University of Arizona - BEAR DOWN! - in 2004. I then attended Colorado State University and graduated with my Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in 2008. I spent 2 years in Flagstaff practicing mixed animal medicine, but alas it was too cold and so I came home to my beloved desert. I am certified in veterinary medical acupuncture and am excited to expand my skills in the alternative medicine field.

My family includes my wonderful husband, 3 step-children “children of my heart”, my 3 dogs, and 2 elderly pasture pets (horses). In my free time you may catch me on the trails, working out with friends or reading a good book.

Gabriella Gonzalez, DVM

Dr. Gabriella Gonzalez is a Tucson native with family from both Mexico and Cuba. She completed her primary and secondary schooling in Catalina Foothills and continued to the University of Arizona for her undergraduate studies earning a B.S. in Veterinary Science with a minor in Spanish. From the beautiful Catalina Mountains to the Rocky Mountains, she completed a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine at Colorado State University in 2023. In veterinary school she found herself enjoying the broad scope of medicine that general practice encompasses while having special interests in surgery, internal medicine, and dentistry. As a granddaughter of Cuban migrants who established a local business in town, Dr. Gonzalez is proud to be a member and provider of the same community. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family. If it’s not outside hiking with her twin brother, Alex, or cycling with her father, Max, she is either cooking new dishes with her husband, Ashish, or is found with her mother, Mercedes, and her grandparents. At home, she and her husband have two pets: a Chihuahua named Bolt and a calico cat named Sasha.