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Below are the veterinarians of CARE. To meet other parts of our team, please visit our pages for physical therapists and staff.

Jessica H. Waldman, VMD, CVA, CCRT

Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist
Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist

Dr. Waldman realized that the unique collaboration of a physical therapist and veterinarian would provide optimal pet therapy outcomes and founded California Animal Rehabilitation (CARE) in June of 2007.

Dr. Waldman received her Bachelor of Arts in Biology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1998. She continued her education at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine and received her Veterinary Medical Doctorate in 2004. Dr. Waldman achieved the Dean’s List each year during veterinary school.

While attending veterinary school, Dr. Waldman was the Alumni Representative for four years and volunteered in a program in the Native American Reservations of the Southwest to spay and neuter pets in need. Dr. Waldman completed two additional externships in small animal surgery with board certified veterinary surgeons at the Animal Medical Center in New York and at the Surgical Group for Animals in Los Angeles.

Following graduation, Dr. Waldman completed an additional year of specialty training as an intern at California Animal Hospital in Los Angeles. During this internship year, she worked with board certified surgeons, neurologists, internists, cardiologists, and dentists. Dr. Waldman also published a paper on the topic of critical care in Pulse veterinary publication. Since completion of her internship in July of 2005, Dr. Waldman has enjoyed practicing small animal medicine.

Dr. Waldman completed a certificate program from the Canine Rehabilitation Institute to become a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist. She is also a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist through the Chi Institute. Dr. Waldman enjoys integrating acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine into her practice of pet rehabilitation.

Dr. Waldman is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the California Veterinary Medical Association, the Southern California Veterinary Medical Association and the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society. She is licensed to practice veterinary medicine in the states of New York and California. Dr. Waldman is one of the founding members of the American Association of Rehabilitation Veterinarians.

Dr. Waldman speaks at veterinary meetings on the subject of canine rehabilitation and has a special interest in neurological rehabilitation and in preventative physical exercise for all life stages. Dr. Waldman loves to see her patients’ quality of life improve, and she counsels in nutrition utilizing a combination of Western Medicine and Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine for the best possible outcome. On the personal side, Dr. Waldman enjoys volleyball, hiking, painting, and spending time with her family. She currently resides in Los Angeles with her husband Stuart and her three daughters Gemma, Delia, and Blythe.

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Dr. Nicolette Bertolone, DVM, CVA, CCRT

Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist
Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist

Dr. Bertolone received her Bachelor of Science in Zoology and Pre-Veterinary Medicine from Kent State University in 2004, and her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from The Ohio State University in 2009. She then completed an intensive one-year rotating internship in surgery and small animal emergency and general medicine at VCA – West Los Angeles Animal Hospital.

From 2010-2013, Dr. Bertolone enjoyed practicing small animal medicine and surgery at a general practice in Los Angeles. She received her Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist training from the Chi Institute in 2011 and began the alternative medicine and acupuncture aspect of the clinic. Dr. Bertolone traveled to China with the Chi Institute to study acupuncture, Chinese herbs and Tui Na in more detail. She has completed several courses in Veterinary Chinese Herbology through the Chi Institute, as well as courses in energy healing through Healing Touch for Animals.

Realizing her passion for pain management and natural healing, Dr. Bertolone decided to focus her energy to pursue the specialty field of veterinary physical rehabilitation. Observing that acupuncture and other alternative therapies were an effective treatment method for many diseases and pain related conditions, Dr. Bertolone wanted to do more for her patients. Physical rehabilitation for pets was the perfect adjunctive therapy for keeping consistent with Dr. Bertolone’s approach to natural medicine. She received her certification as a Canine Rehabilitation Therapist through the Canine Rehabilitation Institute in 2014. She truly loves improving pet’s quality of life through the combination of rehabilitation, acupuncture, Chinese medicine and herbs.

Dr. Bertolone also has a special interest and passion for sight hounds, especially greyhounds. She traveled to Spain and volunteered at Scooby Medina in Medina del Campo, Spain – a Galgo (Spanish Greyhound) rescue camp – providing spay/neuter and medical services. She also collected information for, and was the author of a publication in the journal of Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, entitled “Serological Study of Selected Vector-Borne Disease in Shelter Dogs in Central Spain Using Point of Care Assays.”

Dr. Bertolone lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter and two dogs Billie Jean (greyhound) and Pickle (terrier). In her free time, she enjoys yoga, traveling, cooking and snowboarding.

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Lori Polkowski, DVM, CVA, CCRT

Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist
Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist

Dr. Polkowski received her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Environmental Biology/Zoology from Michigan State University in 1995 and her doctorate of veterinary medicine from Purdue University in 2004. She moved to Los Angeles and completed an internship at Animal Specialty Emergency Center (ASEC) in 2005. Dr. Polkowski then practiced general and emergency small animal medicine at McClave Animal Hospital in Reseda, CA from 2005 until 2014.

Dr. Polkowski has always loved the holistic medicine approach and became certified in acupuncture in 2012 through the Chi Institute. She is very fond of senior patients and found that acupuncture was extremely beneficial for them, but wanted to do even more for them, as well as other orthopedic and neurologic patients. Finding that many of these patients did not have the opportunity to receive proper treatment at other facilities, she eventually found her way to CARE.

Dr. Polkowski is a member of the American Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (AATCVM), the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the Southern California Veterinary Medical Association (SCVMA), and the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (IVAS)

She appeared on Hallmark Home and Family Show discussing and demonstrating acupuncture on dogs in the summer of 2014, which was much less treacherous than when she appeared on Wipeout as a veterinarian in 2011.

Dr. Polkowski has a papillon named Papi, a schnoodle named Uma, the best cat in the world named Stella, four hens named Kopitar, Casey Blake, K, and Flo – and a rooster named Henry.

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Deanna O’Neil, DVM, CVA, CCRT

Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist
Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist

Born and raised in Palos Verdes, Dr. O’Neil is excited to be practicing close to home. She earned her undergraduate degree in Anthropology from Fordham University in New York City. Dr. O’Neil then earned her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Minnesota in 2010. After obtaining her veterinary degree, she completed a one-year rotating internship at VCA All Care. She then continued at VCA All Care where she underwent further training in internal medicine.

Dr. O’Neil achieved her Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist training from the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (IVAS) and is in the process of becoming certified in Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine through IVAS and the College of Integrative Veterinary Therapies. She has a strong interest in senior care. In her spare time Dr. O’Neil enjoys hiking, reading, traveling and spending time with her family. She lives in Redondo Beach with her two beagles, a dachshund, and two cats.

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Kelly Fishman, DVM, CVA

Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist

Dr. Kelly Fishman received her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Ross University in 2014. While in school she founded a student branch of the International Society of Pain Management and was Vice President of the Feline Medicine Club. It was Dr. Fishman’s work with the Society of Pain Management that lead to her initial interest in acupuncture. She developed a passion for educating other students on the benefits of acupuncture and the use of herbals to manage pain.

Upon graduating veterinary school, Dr. Fishman completed a specialty internship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Florida. During her time at UF she helped to treat many different kinds of animals including racehorses, dogs, cats, and exotic animals like a false gharial and bald eagle. During her time at UF Dr. Fishman also worked with a veterinary nutritionist and continues to have a strong interest in providing information on nutrition and diet to dog and cat owners.

Dr. Fishman completed the Acupuncture course at the Chi Institute and received her Certification in Veterinary Acupuncture (CVA). Dr. Fishman has also taken several courses in herbal medicine, and she is currently in the process of completing her certification as a Canine Rehabilitation Therapist.

Dr. Fishman grew up in the Los Angeles area and has always had a love for animals. Her strong love of nature led her to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Sciences from UC – Berkeley. She spent the next ten years in San Francisco cultivating a love for food and culture, while working in a neurology research laboratory at UC San Francisco.

In her free time Dr. Fishman enjoys cooking, yoga, reading and walks on the beach with her dog, Penny Lane. She also has three kitties – Oliver, Nelson and Sophia. Dr. Fishman looks forward to forming meaningful relationships with pets and their owners in the years to come.

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains un-awakened.”

― Anatole France