Dr. Jen Bottaro grew up in northern New Jersey and started her career in veterinary medicine at the tender age of seven helping at the animal hospital her mom managed - cleaning kennels and assembling puppy/kitten/dental kits to assist with client education. Playing hooky from school was never an option! Over time she was trained as an assistant and subsequently a technician, caring for all types of patients. While not in school or work, she was showing Newfoundland dogs and started working with a large hunter/jumper barn – taking lessons, working, and breaking/training horses as her skills developed. She purchased and competed her thoroughbred horse, Emerson, throughout high school. Both Jen and Emerson sought higher education; they both attended Randolph Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, VA. During summer breaks Jen worked at a large emergency and referral hospital as an emergency technician; during the school year she worked nights at a local small animal practice and weekends at the barn where she boarded Emerson.
Attending veterinary school was inevitable and she was also able to fulfill a childhood dream of living in Canada. She attended the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island, Canada and was able to enjoy the beauty of the Island while pursuing her lifelong goals! Between her second and third year of vet school Jen had the opportunity to work with Veterinarians Without Boarders and spent three months in Laos located in Southeast Asia assisting with a Foot and Mouth vaccination and eradication campaign with local livestock. She also helped Savannakhet University develop a curriculum to train farmers to become proficient in basic veterinary medicine, diagnostics and procedures.
After graduating veterinary school Jen spent a year in northern Maine doing mixed animal practice and working with a large Standardbred racehorse population. She then decided that she wanted to focus her career on small animal medicine/surgery and spent the last seven years in Pennsylvania working with dogs, cats, and some exotics including her favorite skunk patient, “Rosie” and even saving a Rose Hair tarantula with a fractured leg!
Jen currently has four best friends that she rescued – Captain (black lab), Thresher (three-legged chocolate lab), Jimmy the Squeaks (DSH) and Giuseppe Morello (DSH). She also has a 75-gallon freshwater aquarium that was given to her years ago by a client and still has many of the original fish! During her free time Jen and her pups love hiking, camping, swimming (in every mud puddle, stream, lake or ocean) and traveling wherever life may take her!