Meet The Staff

The Animal Hospital provides the highest quality, compassionate veterinary care to ensure your pets enjoy a long, happy, and healthy life.

The Animal Hospital

Meet our caring and compassionate veterinary care team committed to providing exceptional veterinary care for your pets.

Meet the Veterinarians

Dr. Lexi Becker, DVM

Dr. Lexi Becker, DVM

Veterinarian

Lexi Becker DVM has literally grown up at The Animal Hospital. From the age of seven, she knew that she wanted to follow in her father’s footsteps, healing and nurturing companion animals. All those late night emergency calls tagging along with her dad had a significant influence on her. When her father retired, Lexi was honored to take over the practice. She strives to uphold and build upon the values and traditions on which the practice was established. Lexi was awarded a Bachelor’s Degree from Cornell University and went on to earn her doctorate with honors from Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. She has a special interest in internal medicine and laparoscopic surgery. Her love for animals and the human animal bond provided her with the framework to be the nurturing, caring clinician that she is. Lexi brings a fine balance of current medicine and clinical knowledge with genuine compassion to the practice.

She enjoys outdoor activities including running and hiking as well as spending time with her husband. Lexi shares her life with two rescued pets: a dog named Maci and cat named Sooki.

Dr. Lexi can be reached anytime with non-urgent questions at DrLexi@TheAnimalHospital.com Please allow 48 hours for reply time.

Dr. Melinda Schwoegler, DVM

Dr. Melinda Schwoegler, DVM

Veterinarian

Melinda Schwoegler DVM received her undergraduate degree in Neuroscience from Colgate University. During her junior year at Colgate she spent one semester sailing abroad with the SEA semester oceanographic program based out of Woods Hole, Massachusetts. She went on to receive her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine in 2008. She then completed a 13-month internship in internal medicine and critical care at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital in Denver, Colorado. Dr. Schwoegler worked at Vail Valley Animal Hospital prior to moving back east to join us at The Animal Hospital in 2010. She works with all small animals and wildlife including birds of prey and turtles. She has special interests in gastrointestinal and dermatologic illnesses.

Outside of work, Dr. Schwoegler spends time with her husband, two young children, two dogs and one wonderfully angry cat. She likes to be outside in the mountains skiing, trail running and racing mountain bikes. She is on the board of directors for Bethlehem Children’s School and she and her husband are members of the honorary committee for the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy.

Dr Melinda can be reached anytime with non-urgent questions at DrMelinda@TheAnimalHospital.com. Please allow 48 hours for reply time.

Dr. Jackie Kucskar, DVM

Dr. Jackie Kucskar, DVM

Veterinarian

​​​​​​​Jackie Kucskar DVM was born and raised in the Capital District and obtained her undergraduate degree in Biology from Russell Sage College in 2004. She then went on to earn her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Cornell University in 2008. Jackie loves the variety that comes with general practice, with special interest in soft tissue surgery, dentistry, and pain management. We are thrilled to have Jackie on our team. Along with her extensive experience and knowledge, she has true compassion for her patients and their human families.

Outside of work, Jackie enjoys photography, skiing (snow and water), hiking, and spending time with her family and pets. She also competes in agility trials with her wonderful Duck Tolling Retriever, Camden.

You can contact her anytime for non-urgent questions at DrJackie@TheAnimalHospital.com. Please allow 48 hours for reply time.

Dr. Katie Tuffey, DVM

Dr. Katie Tuffey, VMD

Veterinarian

Katie Tuffey VMD was born and raised in Pennsylvania, but has always had strong ties to the Albany area where her father grew up. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 2003 and then moved to Kentucky for a year, where she did an internship in Emergency Medicine. She has been working in emergency medicine since that time. Some clients may have already met her at the Capital District Veterinary Referral Hospital, where she has worked full time since 2008 and will continue to work part time, but is excited to enter into the veterinary equivalent of “family” medicine.

In her free time, Katie loves to hang out with her family and is a distance runner and (past tense)dressage rider. Her favorite race is the Adirondack Distance Run which travels from Lake George to Bolton Landing and is challenging with great scenery. She lives outside of Saratoga on a small farmette, which houses several pasture potatoes (aka horses) and a mini donkey. Some day it will also include chickens and goats!

You can reach her anytime with non-urgent questions at DrKatie@TheAnimalHospital.com. Please allow 48 hours for reply time.

Meet the Founder

Dr. Ed Becker, DVM

Dr. Ed Becker, DVM

Founder/Veterinarian

Ed Becker DVM is the founder and veterinarian emeritus of The Animal Hospital. He graduated from Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine with honors, and then spent his first year of practice in Africa working in a free clinic in Marrakesh. After returning to the States, he joined a small animal practice in Elmira, New York for a year before designing and building The Animal Hospital. Ed has always had a deep respect for all animals, and an especially strong commitment to wildlife. Therefore, since opening the practice, he has treated countless sick and injured wildlife free of charge. The expertise developed in wildlife rehabilitation and treatment allowed him the opportunity to be asked to become the consulting veterinarian for the New York State DEC Endangered Species Unit. He held this position for over 25 years. During this time, we have successfully treated and released many endangered species, including Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, and literally thousands of other furry and feathered patients. His primary focus, though, has always been treating and healing those animals that have a special bond with you, our clients. Ed spends his leisure time rebuilding his 170 year old lake home. He shares his life with a rescued terrier mixed breed, Daisy, who was abandoned. Ed was honored by being nominated and elected to the Cornell University Council and was recently elected to the board of directors of the Lake George Land Conservancy. He is also vice president of the Antique and Classic Boat Society Adirondack Chapter. Dr Ed can be reached anytime at DrEd@TheAnimalHospital.com.

Meet Our Management

Karen, LVT

Karen, LVT

Management

Karen is a licensed veterinary technician who joined the staff of The Animal Hospital as our head technician in February of 2006. Her favorite aspects of practice are phlebotomy (drawing blood with sensitivity), dentistry and digital radiography. She has moved through the ranks to become our practice manager. When she’s not at work, Karen spends time with her husband Jon, their dog Moose and 2 cats Rustin and Sampson. In her spare time, Karen enjoys drawing and other arts and crafts. You can reach her anytime for non-urgent questions at Karen@TheAnimalHospital.com. Please allow 48 hours reply time.

Meet Our Licensed Veterinary Technicians

Marissa, LVT

Marissa, LVT

Licensed Veterinary Technician

Marissa graduated from SUNY Delhi in 2009 with a Licensed Veterinary Technician degree. Her favorite part of what she does is being able to perform a variety of tasks as taking radiographs, drawing blood, working in the lab, and doing dental cleanings all in one day. Originally from the Adirondacks near Lake Placid, it is natural for her to love hiking, camping, kayaking…..and watching the NHL’s Ottawa Senators. Marissa shares her world with one dog, Atheena, a cat, Marva and Luna, a chinchilla.

Katie, LVT

Katie, LVT

Licensed Veterinary Technician

Kate began her career in the veterinary field at the age of 14 cleaning cages and walking dogs at a local veterinary hospital in her hometown of Hyde Park, NY. After funneling through most facets of veterinary practice, she graduated from SUNY Ulster County Community College in December 2011 with her hr A.A.S. in Veterinary Technology Science. Kate moved to the area in 2015 where she spent a small amount of time in emergency medicine before returning to general practice. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her chickens and dogs as well as hiking in warmer weather.

Brenna, LVT

Brenna, LVT

Licensed Veterinary Technician

Brenna graduated in May 2017 from SUNY Delhi with an Associate’s degree in Veterinary Science Technology, graduating top 12 in her class. She received her license in July 2017. Brenna has an extensive background in emergency medicine and in the veterinary field. She loves working with cats and dogs but also has experience working with monkeys guinea pigs mice bunnies and rats. She enjoys camping and fishing and is an accomplished flute player.

Meet Our Veterinary Assistants

Moe

Moe

Veterinary Assistant

Maureen joined the staff at The Animal Hospital in July 2004, shortly after moving to New York to be closer to her family. She assists the doctors in appointments and works at reception as well. In 2002, she graduated from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Fl with a BA in Environmental Studies. Her hobbies include reptile husbandry, canoeing, fishing, and drawing.

Meghan

Meghan

Veterinary Assistant

Meghan became part of the team at The Animal Hospital in November 2016. She attended SUNY Cobleskill where she studied Equine Training. Additionally, she studied at Hudson Valley Community College where she developed her skills in Human Services. She loves the everyday challenging tasks that Veterinary medicine has to offer, and has found pure happiness in being a Veterinary Assistant.

Meghan’s furry best friends consist of Ellie, a fun-loving Great Dane, Chester, a bouncy rescued mixed breed, and Ferocious, her cat with a mind of her own. Together they run, hike, play and enjoy life, and the cat supervises.

Gabby

Gaby

Veterinary Assistant

Gaby joined The Animal Hospital team in June of 2016 when looking for a new animal hospital to call home. Before working as a veterinary assistant she received her associates degree in Animal Industry and a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from SUNY Cobleskill. At home, Gaby shares 2 dogs, a Labrador named Rylie and a Chihuahua named Tank, 3 Siamese cats, a snake and a goat named Waylon with her husband Cody. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and camping, off roading in her jeep and riding horses.

Jodi

Jodi

Veterinary Assistant

Jodi joined the team at The Animal Hospital in September of 2017 after working for a local emergency and specialty veterinary hospital for 7 years. She attended Hudson Valley Community College for Fine Arts where she found her passion for painting. Jodi has a studio in Troy, NY where she spends a lot of her free time doing commissioned pet portraits and memorials as well as creating handmade pet accessories. She lives in Albany, NY with her goofy Staffordshire Bull Terrier/Bulldog mix, Goomba and quite possibly the handsomest feline ever, Cramer. In her free time she enjoys outdoor adventures, traveling, live music and creating art.

Meet Our Client Care Coordinators

Rosemary

Rosemary

Client Care Coordinators

Rosemary joins our team with over 10 years experience as a receptionist at two area Veterinary Hospitals. Raised on a farm, she has always had an appreciation for animals. She lives with her husband, Bill, and their four rescued cats. Rosemary and her husband enjoy quiet summer weekends gardening, doing lawn care and then reading or watching movies throughout the winter.

Debbie

Debbie

Client Care Coordinators

Debbie joins The Animal Hospital team with over three years of reception experience working nights at our local Animal Emergency Clinic. She shares her home with her son and four legged children, Payton a dachshund mix and Baxter a domestic long hair. In her spare time she enjoys making jewelry and being outdoors, fishing or hiking.

Meet Our Support Staff

Jason

Jason

Support Staff

Jason joined The Animal Hospital staff in 2001 as our full time grounds and maintenance man. Jason, an accomplished “jack of all trades”, is completely responsible for keeping our grounds in picturesque condition, removing snow in the wee morning hours, and maintaining all aspects of our building and equipment. He loves his big 4 wheel drive John Deere tractor complete with climate controlled cab and stereo CD. His latest boy-toy is a John Deere 310SE backhoe.

Tori

Tori

Support Staff
Dan

Dan

Support Staff

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