We are a full-service animal hospital providing comprehensive pet healthcare services in El Dorado Hills, CA. Our veterinarians offer a wide variety of medical, surgical, and dental services. Our hospital has advanced equipment and technologies, including comprehensive in-house testing for accurate diagnosis, digital x-ray, surgical suites, dental suites, and a pharmacy. We are committed to providing quality care at every stage of your pet's life. From routine preventive care to early detection and treatment of a wide range of conditions and diseases, we have the expertise to provide the highest standard of care for your pet. We also serve Folsom, Cameron Park, Orangevale and Citrus Heights.
Dr. Brad Cahoon
When he was only six years old, Dr. Cahoon knew he was destined to become a veterinarian. He would go with his father to their family pets’ appointments at the local veterinary hospital and was completely captivated by the animals he saw and the way the doctors interacted with them. From then on, he never passed up an opportunity to tag along to the vet’s office!
Dr. Cahoon grew up in Whittier and graduated high school as class valedictorian in 1976. He then attended the University of California, Davis for pre-veterinary studies, graduating in four years with a Bachelor’s in Animal Physiology. In 1987, he graduated from the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine with his DVM, then worked full-time as an emergency doctor until 1998. A year later he opened his own clinic, Lake Forest Pet Hospital, in El Dorado Hills, California.
Emergency medicine is Brad’s true passion; never knowing quite what to expect requires him to think quickly and use every ounce of skill he possesses to save a pet’s life. Dr. Cahoon also enjoys integrating eastern medical approaches into the more standard western medicine—he even received his certification as a Veterinary Acupuncturist in 2013! He’s seen fantastic results with this approach and plans on integrating it into his treatment courses for the rest of his career.
There are few things in life more important to Dr. Cahoon than veterinary medicine. Three of them are his wife, Pam, and two daughters, Cori and Holly. Cori is working on her Doctorate degree in genetics in Kansas City, Missouri, and Holly is following in her father’s footsteps; she recently started at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine!
The Cahoon family has a love for pugs and bulldogs! Belle is a sweet senior pug who lives at home with Brad and Pam; Jack is a pug that splits his time between the Cahoon home and Holly’s residence at vet school; Lucy the pug currently resides with Cori in Kansas City, occasionally traveling with Cori to visit the family for holidays.
Dr. Melissa Richards
Dr. Melissa Richards recalls visiting the veterinarian with her mother and the family pets when she was only a little girl. There, she was in awe of her local doctor and the way he would converse directly with the animals he was treating. Dr. Richards fell in love with the veterinary profession, and her passion hasn’t wavered since. Now, she’s proud to care for the pets and animal owners of her community as a member of the Veterinary Healing Center of El Dorado Hills team!
A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Dr. Richards graduated summa cum laude from the University of California-San Diego in 2006 with a Bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and cell biology, as well as an additional Bachelor’s degree in psychology. She then spent a year working at a small animal hospital while also interning with an equine veterinarian and volunteering at a wildlife rehabilitation center. Next, Dr. Richards headed to veterinary school at the University of California-Davis, graduating with honors in 2011, before completing a rotating one-year internship at a Sacramento-based referral center. She launched her career in private practice shortly afterward and has been tending to pets in the Sacramento and El Dorado Counties ever since.
Having graduated veterinary school alongside the hospital’s very own Dr. Erin McKerney, Dr. Richards jumped at the chance to practice in her own community with a close friend—she was thrilled to join the Veterinary Healing Center of El Dorado Hills family in September of 2017. She particularly enjoys dermatology cases, and also likes the challenge of internal medicine work.
Outside of the office, Dr. Richards is an avid runner and even competed in triathlons during her time in veterinary school. She lives with her husband, Adam, their two young children, and one pet. Candy is a rescued Australian Kelpie mix who doesn’t let her advancing age slow her down in the least; she especially enjoys going hiking and camping with her family!
Dr. Holly Calhoon
Dr. Holly Cahoon has been a firsthand witness to the power of veterinary medicine ever since she was very young—Dr. Brad Cahoon is her father. For her, building relationships with the area’s pet owners and their loveable companions is a dream come true! She’s worked here at the clinic ever since she was 16 years old, and Dr. Cahoon is proud to now serve as an Associate Veterinarian with the Veterinary Healing Center of El Dorado Hills team.
Dr. Cahoon began her animal-care journey as a Kennel Assistant here at the hospital, and she also worked for other hospitals in the area to gain crucial hands-on experience. She obtained her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Davis—exploring front-desk reception and Veterinary Technician roles here at the clinic during her studies—before continuing on to the University’s School of Veterinary Medicine.
Dr. Cahoon became a practicing veterinarian in June of 2018, and has been helping the area’s pet owners and animal companions here at the hospital ever since. She’s especially passionate about pain management, and looks forward to expanding her knowledge and experience in not only medication and rehabilitation, but in areas like dietary supplements, acupuncture, nutrition, herbal formulations, and more.
Away from the clinic, Dr. Cahoon enjoys exercising, practicing Pilates and yoga, relaxing with a favorite Netflix or television show, and cheering on her favorite football and basketball teams. She shares her home with one pet: Jack, a pug whose favorite activities include napping whenever possible, eating voraciously, and hoarding his toys.
Lindsey has adored animals ever since her earliest memories. It wasn’t until she was a younger adult, though, that she learned about the Veterinary Technician profession. The more research she did, the more it made sense to her. For Lindsey, working as a Tech was simply the perfect choice!
A native of Sacramento, Lindsey graduated from Veterinary Technician school in September of 2013 and launched her animal-care career immediately afterward. She hasn’t looked back since! Lindsey spent several years working at the University of California-Davis, and while she loved her time there, she wanted to get back to the one-on-one client and patient interactions of general practice. It wasn’t long before she had signed on here at the Veterinary Healing Center of El Dorado Hills—Lindsey has been a member of the family since January of 2018.
Around the clinic, Lindsey likes monitoring hospitalized patients, bonding with the area’s pet owners, and learning something new nearly every day. She simply can’t imagine spending her days doing anything else!
Lindsey enjoys hiking and spending time in the great outdoors when she’s not at work. She has several pets at home, including two loveable cats and three dogs: Piper and Charlie, both Pit Bulls, and a three-legged Chihuahua named Alfred.
Jennifer’s family always kept dogs and cats while she was growing up, and she has fond memories of one of the barn cats having a litter of kittens. She absolutely loved taking care of all of the pets, and that passion simply never wavered. Being a veterinary professional is all that Jennifer has ever wanted to do! Now, she’s proud to serve as a Registered Veterinary Technician.
Jennifer is originally from Pasadena, California and moved to Auburn with her family at a young age. She was only 17 years old when she secured an occupational placement at an animal hospital in Auburn through her high school’s career placement program. After graduation, Jennifer got a full-time job at another local clinic, where she met many great doctors and Technicians and fell in love with the emergency side of veterinary care.
Eventually, though, it was time for a change—Jennifer made the decision to return to general practice a few years ago. She joined the Veterinary Healing Center of El Dorado Hills family in June of 2009, and recently secured her Technician’s license and now helps the area’s pets and animal parents as a Registered Veterinary Technician.
Jennifer lives in Sacramento with her husband and son, a recent high-school graduate who now serves in the United States Air Force. The family has six cats and a dog, and they love to go camping and fishing in the great outdoors whenever they get the chance.
Sarah has always been drawn to animals, even at a young age. She knew that a career in animal care was perfect for her!
Sarah grew up in Auburn, California and began her veterinary journey when she was hired at a small animal clinic in Nevada City. She was hired on here at the hospital in July of 2015 as a Veterinary Receptionist. Sarah says that the absolute best part of her job is when clients ask for her specifically to discuss their pet’s needs.
Sarah lives in Auburn with her family on their “funny farm”, which includes her longtime horse, Queenie, her Border Collie named Kaep, and several other furry farm animals. In her free time, she shows her Quarter Horse, Cracker and enjoys being out on the lake fishing.
Crystal’s family constantly had dogs when she was growing up, and it took a while for young Crystal to realize that not all families owned pets! She couldn’t imagine her life without the companionship and love of animals, and always strives to do everything she can to connect with pets and animal lovers.
Born in Sacramento, Crystal moved with her family to Alaska when she was only six months old. They returned to Placerville when Crystal was in kindergarten. At 17, she applied for a Kennel Assistant position at Lake Forest Pet Hospital, eventually undergoing on-the-job training to become a Technician. She’s worked with Dr. Cahoon since February of 1998!
Crystal’s favorite part of her workday is serving as a problem-solver. Whether it’s an uncooperative patient, a client in a difficult situation, or even a simple scheduling issue, Crystal loves to work with pets and their owners in a flexible manner to accomplish a singular goal: achieving great health for pets.
Crystal and her husband of 13 years, Jason, have two wonderful children, Alyssa and Dylan. Their home wouldn’t be complete without Lincoln, a nine-year-old German shepherd who is an expert squirrel chaser, and Bozley, a ten-year-old yellow Lab who gets his exercise by chasing Lincoln.
In her free time, Crystal is an avid photographer and prefers snapping pictures of landscape scenes and pets. She’s currently working on her first online photography course to better her skills! She also likes educating herself on organic gardening and is looking forward to the summer’s crop of fruits and vegetables.
Heather grew up with just about every type of pet imaginable and was constantly taking in critters who needed care or attention during her younger years. She’s adored animals ever since she could crawl! When Heather discovered the field of veterinary technology after high school, she knew that she’d found the perfect fit. She hasn’t looked back since—now, Heather is proud to serve as a Registered Veterinary Technician with the Veterinary Healing Center family.
Heather is a native of the Sacramento area and began working in veterinary clinics in 2005 when a doctor at a local overnight emergency hospital offered her a job upon seeing how well she applied a head wrap to her own dog. She started at a clinic in Folsom after beginning her studies in veterinary technology at Cosumnes River College and continued to work in the area for nearly three years before joining the team at a Sacramento-based referral center. Heather served pets and their owners there for the next eight years before joining the Veterinary Healing Center team in July of 2016.
Around the clinic, Heather is particularly passionate about animal behavior and loves to share her personal observations with pet owners. She also likes critical care work, one-on-one patient nursing, and satisfying toenail-trimming sessions.
At home, Heather and her wonderful young daughter share their lives with five dogs: Turtle, a short-haired Dachshund/Chihuahua mix; a long-haired Chihuahua named Brytan; a short-haired Dachshund who goes by Lilly; Gemma the rat terrier/Chihuahua mix; and a long-haired Dachshund named Wendell. When she isn’t enjoying the company of her family or caring for pets’ needs here at the clinic, Heather likes to relax by reading a good book or tending to her garden.
Heather is originally from Sacramento, California, but moved around quite a bit as a child. The one constant that she could always count on were the family pets! She’s never taken for granted the love, loyalty, and companionship that animals provide, and always wanted to do her part in giving something back. Now, Heather gets to live her dream on a daily basis as a member of the Veterinary Healing Center team.
After taking general education classes at Folsom Lake College, Heather decided to jump head-first into the veterinary industry by applying to Cosumnes River College’s veterinary technology program and gaining hands-on experience at an animal hospital. That’s where the Veterinary Healing Centers came in—she’s been a part of the family since February of 2016, and couldn’t be happier with her decision! Heather recently finished her schooling for her A.S. degree, passed her national and state exams, and is now a Registered Vet Tech! We couldn’t be more proud of Heather. Her favorite part of the Veterinary Field is client education and working hands-on with the patients. Heather’s favorite type of patient is when we have spicey felines who require extra patience!
Aside from her interests in the animal-care world, Heather is an avid quilter and also likes relaxing in her hammock, reading, and spending time with her own pets at home. She and her mother live with a hyper and happy Golden Retriever Mix, Kona, an energetic Border Collie Mix, Guinness, as well as a pair of loveable cats named Stitch and Mama Cat.