Our Veterinarians

vet in indian harbour beachManuel J. Pepen DVM, DABVP – Veterinarian

Dr. Manuel Pepen is a Diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, board certified canine and feline practice. He earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Universidad Santo Domingo and is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Florida Veterinary Medical Association, The American Association of Feline Practitioners, and the Veterinary Emergency Critical Care Society. Internal medicine is of special interest to Dr. Pepen.

Dr. Pepen and his wife Linda have two sons, Daniel and David. They share their household with three dogs, a cat, a Macaw and several saltwater fish. He enjoys surfing and playing classical guitar in his spare time.

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indian harbour beach veterinarianJeffrey Steven Christiansen, DVM, DACVS - Veterinarian

Dr. Jeffery Steven Christiansen is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (DACVS) and a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM). He joined Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital in September of 2014 as our dedicated surgeon.

"As a surgeon, it is most satisfying to be able to make an immediate, dramatic improvement in a pet's quality of life," he says.

Dr. Christiansen hails from Central Pennsylvania, and was inspired to pursue a career in veterinary medicine since a young age. Dr. Christiansen grew up with horses, dogs, and cats, and found himself intrigued by the care veterinarians provided for his pets. While in high school, he worked as a kennel assistant and then as a technician.

Dr. Christiansen attended Pennsylvania State University for his undergraduate degree in Animal Bioscience. He went on to attend the University of Tennessee's College of Veterinary Medicine, where he graduated in 1996 as a member of the Phi Zeta Honor Society of Veterinary Medicine. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, and the Brevard County Veterinary Medical Association. His veterinary interests include surgery, stem cell therapy/regenerative medicine, and stenting.

"I have greatly enjoyed the opportunity to provide discounted or even pro bono care for veterans, police officers, and rescue organizations in need," he says.

Dr. Christiansen and his wife Wendy, also a veterinarian, have two children named Henry and Kate. He enjoys working as a freelance writer in his spare time, writing the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe for Marvel comics. He also likes to jog, lift weights, and play with his children. The Christiansen family has several pets, including two dogs named Consuela and Charlie; and four cats, Elvis, Lamont, Shanequa, and Yolanda.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDaniel James Pepen, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Dr. Daniel James Pepen has worked as a veterinarian at Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital since 2010. His passion for animals, however, began much earlier in life. Dr. Pepen still recalls the childhood inspiration that made him begin to pursue veterinary medicine as a career.

"I remember seeing my father helping both people and their pets when I was younger," he says. "That strongly inspired me to become a veterinarian."

Dr. Pepen attended the University of Florida as an undergraduate, earning his degree in Animal Biology. He went on to complete his doctorate in veterinary medicine from the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, graduating in 2010. Before completing his studies, Dr. Pepen gained valuable experience working as a veterinary assistant at Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital, and as a veterinary technician at the University of Florida Veterinary Hospital.

Dr. Pepen's favorite aspect of being a veterinarian is utilizing problem-solving skills on a daily basis to help a variety of animals and their owners. His professional interests include internal medicine and surgery. Dr. Pepen is a member and former president of the Brevard County Veterinary Medical Association. He is also a member of the Florida Veterinary Medical Association.

When he's not at our animal hospital, Dr. Pepen enjoys spending his free time surfing, reading, and traveling. He and his wife Danielle are also the proud pet parents to a cockatiel named Eduardita, two Lionhead rabbits named Jordy and Alanna, and three dogs named Whoadie, Maliah, and Sophia.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDanielle Becton, DVM, CCRT, CVA - Associate Veterinarian

Growing up in Jacksonville, Dr. Danielle Becton knew she wanted to become a veterinarian since she was a child. Her family kept various pets, including dogs, cats, horses, snakes, mice, and other reptiles, which spurred her interest in animal care.

Dr. Becton graduated cum laude and with honors from the University of Florida, where she earned her bachelor's degree in Animal Biology. She attended the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, graduating in 2010. She joined Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital as an Associate Veterinarian in 2012.

Dr. Becton is a certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT) and certified Veterinary Acupuncturist (CVA). She is a member of the Brevard County Veterinary Medical Association, the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, and the Association of Rehabilitation Practitioners. Her veterinary interests include internal medicine, physical rehabilitation therapy, and integrative medicine.

Dr. Becton most enjoys "seeing patients leave (her) care looking and feeling better than when they came in." In the past, she has volunteered at a local animal shelter to socialize new intakes and worked with a pet therapy program.

At home Dr. Becton is a pet parent to several animals: Maliah, a Boxer; Sophia, a toy Poodle; Whoadie, a terrier; Jordy and Alana, rabbits; and Eduardita, a Cockatiel. Her free time is spent doing yoga, surfing, attending art festivals, and traveling.

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vets in indian harbour beach, flCaitlin Marie Rivera, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Since joining the Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital team in May of 2018 as an Associate Veterinarian, Dr. Caitlin Maria Rivera has proven herself to be a great contributor to the high standards of veterinary services provided at our facility. Some of Dr. Rivera’s professional interests include avian and exotic medicine, soft tissue surgery, and internal medicine. She is always happy to help an animal in need.

“Being a veterinarian is very rewarding knowing you saved a life or improved the quality of life for the patient, and even the client” Dr. Rivera says. “It’s also very satisfying to be able to solve a challenging case.”

Dr. Rivera considers herself a CrossFit addict, rigorously training herself to keep in shape and push herself beyond her own limitations. In her spare time, Dr. Rivera enjoys working out, partaking in beach activities like fishing, kayaking, and paddle boarding. She also likes to hang out with her friends, family, and pets. At home, Dr. Rivera and her husband Robert are soon to have a lovely daughter named Arya Nicole, who is due in August of 2018. They have 3 cats named Misty May, Babygirl, and Loki, as well as a Chihuahua named Chewy, an African Grey named Ecko, a snake named Tina, and a hedgehog named Chia.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansKristina Kenney Archer, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Dr. Kristina Archer can remember having a strong affinity for animals since childhood and recalls an instinctual desire to help others. At the age of eleven, she was convinced becoming a veterinarian was a great path in life to follow. Throughout high school she helped volunteer her time at the Wake County SPCA and worked in small animal hospitals. It was in April of 2019 that Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital was proud to welcome Dr. Archer to our veterinary staff, and she has helping server our amazing community ever since.

Dr. Archer graduated from North Carolina State University for both her undergraduate education and to obtain her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. She has received numerous awards and scholarships including the 2013 Friends of the NCVMA Award and the Kenan Memorial Scholarship. Dr. Archer is also a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Equine Practitioners. Some of her professional interests include surgery, ultrasounds, and patient care.

“As a veterinarian, being able to help make someone or a pet have a brighter day is incredibly satisfying,” Dr. Archer says. “It is tremendously rewarding knowing how to maintain and or better the health of a cherished family pet.”

Away from the hospital Dr. Archer enjoys doing Crossfit and staying active by playing basketball or going for hikes. She also loves going to the movies, eating a meal with her family, and going to church. Dr. Archer regularly enjoys attending church with her husband, J.R., in Palm Bay and participating in their annual mission trip to the Philippines. During their trips they teach animal husbandry and agriculture. Dr. Archer owns one domestic long haired cat named Hannah and aspires to find a Boston Terrier in the near future.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDr. Rebecca Smith, ABVP Resident - Associate Veterinarian

In June of 2019 Dr. Rebecca Smith was welcomed to Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital as one of our outstanding Associate Veterinarians. One of the aspects of veterinary care that Dr. Smith finds most satisfying is being able to preserve the human-animal bond. She deeply cares about her role in both our clients’ and patients’ lives and is always striving to administer the best veterinary care. She is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, and holds professional interests in emergency medicine, general practice, and exotic animal treatments. Dr. Smith is currently in her first year of ABVP residency completing her program here at Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital.

Dr. Smith received her undergraduate diploma from Texas A&M University with a B.S. & M.S. in Biomedical Sciences and Literature. She obtained her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Oklahoma State University in 2019 and has loved being a practicing veterinary ever since!

“Being a veterinarian is something I’ve wanted my entire life,” Dr. Smith proclaims. “It’s very difficult to pinpoint one particular event that really motivated me, but I’ve had pets die and that made me work harder towards achieving my goals.”

Outside of work, Dr. Smith likes to explore new places. She enjoys staying active by swimming, but also loves to stay home with a good book or to watch some TV. Dr. Smith’s hobbies also include crocheting, cross-stitching, cooking, and baking. She also loves sharing her home with a Blue Heeler mix named Houdini, a Lab named Dallas, and a domestic short hair cat named Cora.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDr. Michael James Mclaughlin, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Growing up in Cocoa Beach, Florida, Dr. McLaughlin was inspired by his father and grandfather who were both physicians, to pursue a career in medicine. Before becoming a veterinarian, he was a veterinarian technician here at Aloha Pet & Bird Hospital and interned at the Mote Marine Aquarium where he worked with sharks and aquaculture. He graduated with a degree in marine biology from the University of South Florida in 2012 and earned his doctorate of veterinary medicine from the Ross University School of Vet Medicine in 2020. Dr. McLaughlin’s professional veterinary interests include exotics and medicine. Outside of the hospital, he is a member of the Florida Veterinary Medical Association. At home, Dr. McLaughlin has a black lab mix named Bruce, a coconut retriever mix named Elsworth, and an African Grey parrot named Zulu. During his free time, he enjoys surfing, fishing, and playing soccer.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDr. Claire Vani, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Dr. Claire Vani is passionate about improving the health and wellness of all animals in her community. She joined our team as a full-time Associate Veterinarian in July of 2020, and brings us her expertise in pet nutrition, internal medicine, and diagnostic radiology.

Dr. Vani is originally from St. Louis Missouri and has been dedicated to caring for animals since discovering her passion for veterinary care during her undergraduate degree. She was working to become a Marine Biologist and was seeking a more hands-on way to care for animals in her community. She decided to pursue veterinary medicine and has been improving the lives of animals ever since!

Claire graduated from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette with a BS in Biology in 2015 with high honors and received the President's Award. She then graduated from University of Missouri Veterinary School in 2020 and received the Lucy B. Davis Award in small animal surgery. She was also an inductee of the veterinary honor society Phi Zeta and has spent time volunteering at a cat shelter as well as working as a Veterinary Assistant.

"I love solving the puzzle and giving a voice to patients who can't speak for themselves," says Dr. Vani. "It's so gratifying to problem-solve and improve pet and human lives at the same time."

At home, Claire has two cats of her very own, Moe and Tiberius. Moe is a black & white domestic shorthair who is nicknamed "Mr. Balogurt" and Tiberius is an orange tabby nicknamed "Mr. Beans". In her free time, Claire enjoys backpacking, scuba diving, crossfit, reading Harry Potter, and going to Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure. She also loves watching her favorite show, the Office.

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDr. Erica Addante, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Inspired by her mother's love for animals, Dr. Erica Addante has developed her passion for animals all her life. She grew up in Stockton, California, and would always nurture plenty of creatures who needed a home! Dr. Erica is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association as well as the Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Society. Her professional interests include surgery and exotic animal science.

Dr. Erica earned her BS in Animal Science from the University of California, Davis in 2009. She then attended veterinary school at Oklahoma State University and graduated in 2019. Dr. Erica has experience volunteering at the Dallas Zoo and working as a Veterinary Technician at various veterinary clinics throughout California. In September of 2020, Dr. Erica joined our team full-time!

"Being able to solve a complex puzzle that has a profound impact on others," says Dr. Erica. "Knowing I can be there to help guide others in enjoying/celebrating a life from start to end is an honor in itself."

Dr. Erica is married to her wonderful husband Rick, a Professor at the Florida Institute of Technology. Together, they have two dogs, Juno is a Greyhound mix and Rookie is a Whippet. Erica and Rick love doing outdoor activities, like surfing, hiking, running, crossfit, and many more!

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indian harbour beach veterinariansDr. Michelle Dally, JD, DVM - Associate Veterinarian

Dr. Dally is a mixed-animal veterinarian who ran her own mobile practice for 6 and a half years in rural western Colorado. Simultaneously, she also provided all the veterinary services for the local shelter which served 3 counties. She is accredited as a veterinary medical acupuncturist and fear free handler. She moved to Florida in March of 2020 and has since started a Brevard County branch of Street Dog… serving the homeless up and down the Central Eastern Coast of Florida.

Veterinary medicine is a second career for her. Before entering vet school at 44, she was schooled as a lawyer, and served as a Senate legislative aide and later, a political journalist. She shared in a Pulitzer prize in 2000 for coverage of the Columbine Massacre and published a novel titled “A Highly Placed Source” in 2006.

She and her husband raised 4 boys in a blended family in a fairly- messy house full of adopted and foster dogs.

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