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Practice Name

The Center For Animal Wellness

Primary Location
1167 N Santa Fe Dr.
Denver, CO 80204
Phone: 303-534-1875
Fax: 720-932-1755

Office Hours

Main Content

Dr. Aubrey Lavizzo, DVM, Practice Founder

Although, Dr. Aubrey is now retired from seeing patients, he is actively pursuing our mission of serving the community. Dr. Aubrey is a 1970 graduate of the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine. After a brief stint in private practice in his hometown New Orleans, Dr. Aubrey began practicing in Denver in January, 1971. 

Dr. Aubrey is active in community and professional organizations and veterinary education. In addition to membership in the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society, the Colorado Veterinary Medical Association, and the American Veterinary Medical Association,  Aubrey also serves on the Board of Directors of the Animal Assistance Foundation.  Dr. Aubrey also serves as an affiliate faculty member of the Admissions and Mentoring Committees of the CSU College of Veterinary Medicine and Biological Sciences, and is the Practitioner Diversity representative of the CSUCVMBS Admissions Committee.  Dr. Aubrey's varied interests include hiking, backpacking, photography, bicycling, live music--especially jazz and blues--and theater. 

Dr. Andy Nigro, DVM, Medical Director and Practice Owner

Dr. Andy is a graduate of Colorado State University where he earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine. His undergraduate work was done at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where he obtained degrees in fields completely outside of science and medicine. He is a member of both the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society and the Colorado Veterinary Medical Association.

Dr. Andy was born and raised in Kansas City, but has been enjoying all Colorado has to offer for the past 15 years. He has also been fortunate enough to have traveled throughout Asia, India, Northern Africa, Europe, and South America. He enjoys watching and playing nearly all sports, but especially skiing and golf. He is also an avid backpacker. Other interest include music (virtually every genre, as long as it's quality) and reading (especially the classics.) In 2013 Dr. Andy married his wife, Nikkie, and shortly thereafter they welcomed their two beautiful children, Sloan (2) and Sam (1). Andy and his family share their home with Zigby the Golden Retriver and Queso the cat.

Dr. Courtney Turner, DVM, Practice Owner

Dr. Turner is a native Texan. She attended the University of Texas at Austin for her Bachelor’s degree and went on to graduate from the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Turner began her veterinary career in equine medicine, but soon realized that small animal medicine was her true calling. Her areas of interest include internal medicine, orthopedics, and dermatology. Dr. Turner is a member of the AVMA, CVMA, and TVMA. In her free time she enjoys running, riding her horse, and hiking with her dogs, Crash and Blue. She is the proud aunt to eight nieces and nephew, who think being an “animal doctor” is pretty neat. Dr. Turner looks forward to serving you and your pets.

Dr. Carolyn Karrh, DVM

Dr. Carolyn Karrh is our newest addition to TCAW family! She was born and raised in the deep south, living most of her life in Alabama and Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia Veterinary School in 2008, fulfilling a life-long dream of becoming a veterinarian. As veterinary medicine is a second career for her, Dr. Karrh’s previous profession was performing in music and theatre, receiving a Master of Fine Arts degree in Theatre from UGA in 1993. She moved to Nashville in the late 1990’s to make a career as a country music artist, however, while living in Tennessee, Dr. Karrh realized her highest aspiration was to be a veterinarian, so she left that occupation behind and answered her true calling, going back to school in her thirties to study veterinary medicine and graduating with her DVM at the age of 40.
Dr. Karrh has worked in many facets of veterinary medicine, including private practice, shelter medicine, low-cost spay/neuter clinics, home euthanasia and hospice care as well as non-profit organizations helping the economically disadvantaged. Additionally, Dr. Karrh started her own non-profit organization, Peace, Love & Paws, helping Denver’s homeless community with basic pet needs and veterinary care for their pets, a cause very close to her heart.
Dr. Karrh is passionate about supporting and honoring the human-animal bond and this has brought her to The Center for Animal Wellness. She is a long-time pet owner/mom and has treated and cared for dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, fish, reptiles and other small mammals, being particularly fond of senior pets and those with special needs. Her favorite activities include loving her adoring pets, spending time with friends, live theater, motorcycling, writing, supporting animal welfare and rescue, as well as helping those less fortunate by volunteering for local low-cost spay/neuter programs and clinics.

Kirsten Butler, Hospital Director, Practice Owner and Certified Veterinary Technician

Kirsten joined TCAW in February of 2016. Born and raised in Kansas, Kirsten received a BA in Psychology from Wichita State University and spent 10 years as a manager at Michael’s Arts and Crafts. She decided to make a career change after several years of volunteering for a giant breed dog rescue.
Kirsten moved from Wichita to Denver at the end of 2009 to attend Bel-Rea and become a Certified Veterinary Technician.
Kirsten enjoys traveling and sampling the many wonderful microbrews that Colorado has to offer along with the beautiful scenery. She lives with her two wonderful dogs – Pumpkin, a Dogue de Bordeaux and Monty, a lab mix.

Lissa Monnier-Gibson, Lead Certified Veterinary Technician

Lissa has had the pleasure of caring for all types of animals in the veterinary field for the past 9 years and plans on many more years to come. She graduated from veterinary technician school in 2012 and is currently our most senior certified veterinary technician. She has worked with a variety of critters, but carries a soft spot for large/giant breed dogs. She is an Ohio native, but would not dream of leaving ‘Colorful Colorado’. Lissa enjoys all types of outside activities including climbing, biking, hiking , skiing, and disc golf with her husband Dan.

Scott Dahlgren, Certified Veterinary Technician

Scott joined TCAW team in October 2016. Having spent most of his life in Wisconsin, he moved to Denver in 2008 and became a CVT in 2012. Scott is an avid sports fan with a particular fondness for the Green Bay Packers and Wisconsin Badgers. Among other things, he also enjoys reading, biking, and tasting a nice microbrew or bourbon. Scott and his wife Jennifer share a home with their three year old daughter Olivia, their dog Murphy, and Sam the cat.

Markie Maestas, Certified Veterinary Technician

Born and raised in New Mexico, Markie has always loved working with animals and enjoys having the ability to help pet owners care for their furry family members! Markie studied at New Mexico State majoring in animal science and minoring in chemistry before moving to Denver to attend Bel-Rea to become a certified veterinary technician, graduating in 2009. Markie has a strong interest in veterinary dentistry, is Fear Free certified, and in the past has worked as a wildlife rehabilitator for birds of prey and mammals. When Markie is not at work, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, day drinking at Colorado’s finest breweries, and binge watching old movies. Markie resides in north Denver with her boyfriend Carlos and their 5 pets: Quin, the “best dog ever”, Dotti (a cat who loves sunshine, catnip, and naps), Mamba (a feisty feline and the reason they can’t have nice thingsīŠ), Katniss (the most grateful adopted feral cat ever!), and their leopard gecko.

Brigette Chavez, Veterinary Technician

Brigette is one of the newer additions to The Center for Animal Wellness. Originally from the east coast, Brigette relocated to Colorado in January 2018. She loves all the outdoor activities Colorado has to offer and spends most of her free time hiking with her two dogs, Sammy and Thor. Brigette's career in veterinary medicine began 5 years ago as an assistant in a small animal practice and hopes to one day go back to school to become a CVT. We are so glad to have Brigette as part of our team!

Mindy Basler, Veterinary Assistant

Mindy just recently move to Colorado in January2017. She is originally from Missouri where she has worked in the veterinary field for over 7 years. Mindy's previous experience includes both small animal and wildlife medicine. She lives with her German Shepherd, Ally, whom she enjoys spending time with outdoors when not working at TCAW. Mindy also likes baseball (especially the Cardinals), live music, and BBQ's. We are excited to welcome Mindy to our team!

Kim Terlau, Front Office Supervisor

Kim in a Colorado native with over nine years of experience in shelter medicine. She is excited to contribute her extesnive knowledge of animal behavior to The Center for Animal Wellness. She enjoys recreational dancing (and can often be seen using it as a mode of transportation), karaoke, sewing, cooking and most importantly, eating! She lives with her cats, The Chin (yes, he's a super hero), Timmy the Tooth, and her wonderful mum.

Maria Silva Cano, Client Services Representative

Maria is orinally from Mexico, but has grown up in the Denver area. She is currently in college studying to earn her Master's in Immigration Policy. Her love for animals really began when she worked as an instructor at an equestrian camp teaching young kids how to care for and ride horses. Maria is also active in her community in nonprofit endeavors with a focus on immigration. She is getting married this coming December to her fiance, Ron, who is also an animal lover. Maria shares her home with her two turtles Frank and Beans.

DeMika, Client Services Representative

DeMika is a native of Denver Colorado and joined TCAW in August of 2018. She graduated from PIMA medical institute with her Associates Degree in Applied Science back in 2014 and has loved working in the veterinary field since as both Veterinary Technician and Client Services! When she is not at work she enjoys spending time outdoors with her two little humans, Liliana (3) and Gionni (7), going to museums and other kid friendly activities, camping and fishing, and binge watching on Netflix (usually true crime documentaries :)) DeMika looks forward to serving you and your fur babies!

Kaylee Chapman, Client Services Representative

Kaylee is one of our Client Service Representatives who moved to Colorado a few years ago from Georgia. She has traded her long days on the lake swimming and fishing for long days on the mountain snowboarding and going to microbreweries (mainly to pet all of the dogs). She is currently working on her Bachelor’s degree in Biology at University of Colorado, Denver, as well as her Certified Veterinary Technician Associate’s degree at Penn Foster. Upon graduation she will go on to work towards receiving her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine. She tries to go mountain biking and dirt biking as much as possible, but road bikes often as it is easier to fit in living in the city. She enjoys playing Playstation, crafty projects, playing with her 2 nephews, hockey games, and anything to do with astronomy, which includes visits to the Chamberlin Observatory. She is able to juggle her busy schedule due to her 16 years of experience as a ballerina which has taught her the importance of discipline and confidence. Really, it would all be impossible if it weren’t for her boyfriend, Brian, and best friend/body guard, Emmett, who not only prays before every meal and will give you the best high-five ever, but is therapy certified through Therapy Pets Unlimited, and is always by her side through her hours of studying, that is, when her friends aren’t borrowing him for chemo or surgery recoveries.

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Services We strive to provide complete care for our patients. Learn more about all the services we provide. Make An Appointment We will do our best to accommodate your busy schedule. Schedule an appointment today! Online Forms Our patient forms are available online so they can be completed in the convenience of your own home or office.


I was visiting the Santa Fe Arts District and my small pup needed a prescription refill. TCAW helped me very quickly. I’m impressed!

Kathleen C.

Office Hours

Day Open Closed
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
8:00am 8:00am 8:00am 9:00am 8:00am 8:00am Closed
5:30pm 5:30pm 5:30pm 5:30pm 5:30pm 2:00pm Closed

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