Image of a chimera tabby and calico cat reaching its head around a cabinet corner against a wall of lime yellow green.

Who we are

Established in 1888, the mission of the Louisiana SPCA is to promote, protect and advance the well-being of Louisiana's companion animals. 

Meet our Vets

Our veterinarians are some of the best in New Orleans. They take pride in providing affordable, high-quality care to the animals in our community!


Image of LASPCA veterinarian Dr. Kerry Backsen with a dog.


Dr. Kerry Backsen
Dr. Kerry has been practicing veterinary medicine for 9 years and has been the anchor of our shelter clinic since starting at the Louisiana SPCA. A native of Metairie, Dr. Kerry studied veterinary medicine at LSU. Dr. Kerry has just one dog at home, Lolly, who she fostered before adopting. Dr. Kerry’s knowledge of general veterinary medicine is augmented by additional education in veterinary forensics, which she employs to assist our Humane Law Enforcement team during instances of cruelty and neglect.



Image of LA/SPCA vet Dr. Gina Cheuk.


Dr. Gina Cheuk
Dr. Cheuk began practicing veterinary medicine in 2005 and has a special interest in exotic pets and dentistry. Originally from New Orleans, she attended veterinary school at LSU. Dr. Cheuk’s own pets include a dog, 3 chickens, and 2 cats.





Image of LA/SPCA Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Gautreaux



Dr. Sarah Gautreaux

Dr. Sarah Gautreaux is a New Orleans girl through and through. She was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana and attended Grace King High School. For her undergraduate, she attended University of New Orleans. After building a successful property management and brokerage firm, Dr. Gautreaux decided to go back to school and pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a veterinarian. Dr. Gautreaux once again returned to the wonderful University of New Orleans for the prerequisites required for admission to veterinary school. She then attended Louisiana State University of Veterinary Medicine and received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. Dr. Gautreaux’s special interests as a veterinarian include emergency and critical care, internal medicine, and endocrinology. She also likes to volunteer her time cleaning up local cemeteries. 

Dr. Gautreaux resides in Lakeview and has three beautiful sons William, Preston, and Dylan. Her family also includes two LASPCA adoptees, Raffie (a Heinz 57 mutt) Truffle (a three legged black lab) and two rescue kitties, Debbie and Spotlight. When she’s not at the LASPCA Dr. Gautreaux enjoys traveling, photography, biking around town, discovering neighborhood restaurants and bars and riding horses. She also loves outdoor music festivals, especially the Jazz Fest, and New Orleans City Park. Dr. Gautreaux is a member of American Veterinary Medical Association and Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association.



Image of LA/SPCA Veterinarian Dr. Gene jessop


Dr. Gene Jessop
From working with NASA primates to volunteering with Olympic equestrian horses, Dr. Jessop has improved the well-being of countless animals during his 50+ year veterinary career. Dr. Jessop has been the anchor of our Community Clinic's surgery team for the past 10 years and spays or neuters up to 40 animals per day. In this photo he holds a replica gold medal awarded to him by the Olympic Committee in appreciation for his volunteer role with equestrian horses during the XXIII Olympic Games in Los Angeles, an experience which he draws inspiration from to this day. He lives by the words "Give something more than you take" each day.



Image of LA/SPCA Veterinarian Dr. Jayme Lauderdale


Dr. Jayme Lauderdale
Dr. Jayme Lauderdale is originally from Arizona and has been practicing veterinary medicine for 10 years after attending Colorado State University. Dr. Lauderdale is one of our lead surgeons and can spay/neuter dozens of animals per day. At home she has two dogs currently, both adopted from a shelter in Arizona.





Image of LA/SPCA Veterinarian Dr. Laura Managan


Dr. Laura Managan
Dr. Managan is originally from Lafayette, LA and attended LSU School of Veterinary Medicine, from which she graduated in 2010. At home she has two Italian greyhounds, who she admits are extremely spoiled. Dr. Managan’s most memorable event from her career so far was treating a dog who had consumed a shish kabob, skewer and all.









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Dr. Sarah Reardon
Dr. Reardon is a 2014 graduate of LSU School of Veterinary Medicine. Born in Canada and raised in Tennessee, Dr. Reardon has called New Orleans home for 12 years. She has a special interest in shelter medicine, HQ/HV spay and neuter, and dermatology. Dr. Reardon has three dogs at home, all of which are Louisiana SPCA alumni, including Wookie, who came to the shelter unable to move anything except his tail. After extensive treatment and medical foster, he returned to full functionality and Dr. Reardon, who had been fostering him, fell in love.



Image of Dr. Adrianna Smith.


Dr. Adrianna Smith
Dr. Smith recently joined the Louisiana SPCA’s Community Clinic team after working in private practice for 4 years. Born in Chicago, Dr. Smith is a graduate of Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine and is currently working on her Veterinary Acupuncture Certification. She is able to perform acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine as an alternative to traditional Western medical approach.





 Image of LA/SPCA Veterinarian Dr. Ashley Tahir

Dr. Ashley Tahir
Dr. Tahir joined the Louisiana SPCA team in 2012 after graduating from St. George's University in Grenada, West Indies. In addition to working at the Louisiana SPCA, Dr. Tahir has also worked in private practice and runs a mobile veterinary clinic called Fur de Lis. Dr. Tahir has a particular interest in high volume spay/neuter. At home she has 2 dogs and 2 cats, including Q, a 15 year old cat rescued from an abandoned house in Michoud in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.




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Dr. April Ulmer
Dr. April has been practicing veterinary medicine for 15 years and is a graduate of Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. April is a self-described “crazy cat lady” with a special interest in feline medicine and 10 cats at home ranging in age from 8 months to 18 years. She also has an interest in Military Working Dog medicine and was a US Army Veterinary Corps Officer for 12 years, and is certified in Disaster Management.



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