Greater Jacksonville and St. Johns Area
All services are provided in the comfort of your home.
Includes a brief examination by the veterinarian, a full assessment of your pet's quality of life, and a custom treatment plan to help you care for your pet and monitor their condition.
Includes a discussion with the veterinarian, medication to ensure comfort, gentle euthanasia, pawprint impression keepsake, lock of fur, and Lap of Love's Eternal Pawprints booklet. The additional cost for the varied cremation services are detailed in the Aftercare Pricing section.
Includes a brief examination by the veterinarian to help explain your pet's condition, discuss symptom management including pain and anxiety, and prepare an end of life care plan using the appropriate quality of life scale to manage your pet along with your family's needs and desires.
There may be an additional charge for extended travel (see Service Area below), holidays ($50 - $100), pets over 99 lbs, appointments outside normal business hours (when arranged), aggressive pets, and some exotic species.
Although we mainly see dogs and cats, some of our veterinarians can assist you with other species such as pigs, guinea pigs, rabbits, ferrets, birds, fish, and goats. Call for pricing and availability.
With this option, your pet is cremated privately at a licensed crematory. The ashes are contained in a lovely wooden urn (engraved nameplate is optional) and will be returned to your primary care veterinarian within two weeks. They can also be made available directly from the crematory.
This option is for families that don't wish to have their pet's ashes returned nor wish to bury at home. Pets are respectfully cremated with other pets at a licensed crematory and ashes are scattered by the crematory.
There may be a fee if additional assistance to safely carry your pet out of your home is needed.
We are here to answer your questions every day, from 7am - 11pm. Appointments are scheduled throughout the week, please call for availability.
Sometimes, pets take a turn for the worse overnight, so we do our best to accommodate same day appointments with a few hours notice when possible.
If this is a medical emergency, please contact your local veterinarian or one of the emergency clinics listed in the Local Resources section.
Let us introduce you to the amazing hospice veterinarians in your area.
Katie Stender, DVM
I knew I had found my purpose as a veterinarian, perhaps even as a human being, after my first home visit for a very sick patient. Being able to share such a sacred moment with families as they said goodbye to their dearest companion is, simply, an honor. Helping others is what I was meant to do, however, I will never forget the day my beloved Labrador received her own beautiful angel wings. She was comfortable at home, surrounded by love, and she peacefully slipped away as I held her paw and told her I loved her. I truly believe it is the kindest gift that we can give our furry family members. One of my favorite things about my profession is that I'm able to help animals, but also build lasting relationships with their owners.
I graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelors of Science and Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine. My husband, Taylor, and I have five furry children. Skippy, Shirley, Taco and Smokey are our kitties, and we also have a black Labrador, Lady. All of our animals are rescues and we love them dearly!
Katie Green, DVM
I am most at peace when I am helping people and their pets. Shelter medicine and non-profit general practice have been my home for some time now. I consider it a privilege to be a voice for the voiceless here in Jacksonville. Having the ability to help my patients transition from their lives here on earth is a blessing, and sharing in this moment creates a connection second to none. It is one of the most sacred gifts I can give a pet and their people.
While earning my bachelor’s degree at the University of Florida, my constant companion was Tazzy, an amazing, cranky, 15-year-old, grey and white cat who I rescued in central Florida. When Tazzy was 16, she took a turn for the worse and I rushed her to the veterinary hospital. She passed away in the triage area, away from me, with strangers. It still makes me incredibly sad that I wasn’t with her during her final moments.
After attending Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine I moved to Jacksonville to begin my career. One day, Howard, a 2-year-old white pit bull came in as a stray with a large mass on his front leg. I diagnosed him with bone cancer and decided to take him home and make whatever time he had left amazing.
We had six fantastic months together where I got to spoil him rotten. He truly was the best dog. When I knew it was time for Howard to cross the rainbow bridge, a friend of mine came out to the house and we sat in front of the Christmas tree with Howard’s head in my lap as I said my last goodbyes. Knowing from personal experience the peace that comes with at-home end of life care makes me incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to share this gift with you and your family.
Erin Coello, DVM
I cannot remember a time growing up when I, like a lot of children, didn’t want to be a veterinarian someday. For a lot of people, those dreams changed, but for me, the passion never died. I got my first job as a kennel technician for our family veterinarian on my 16th birthday, the day I had been waiting for to finally work with animals! Dr. Losey had been treating our family pets (cats, dogs, hamsters, and even our parakeet) for most of my life. He and his staff knew me and my family as well as they knew our animals. The most valuable lesson I learned from Dr. Losey during that time was that not only was this a profession where I got to work with animals, but people too. As my passion for animals grew, so did my urge to embrace, encourage, and protect the human-animal bond. As a veterinarian, I feel privileged to work with families who are welcoming a new member, such as a puppy, kitten, or even an older animal getting a new home, but I am just as fortunate to be there for a family when it is time to say goodbye. I am truly blessed to be a part of their journey, every step of the way.
My own journey was only beginning when I started working in my first vet clinic. I continued my experience in high school and college, and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Florida. Following graduation, I worked my way toward vet school with various careers including high school teaching and marine mammal training. I finally graduated from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine, after living on the beautiful Island of St. Kitts for 2.5 years, and completing my clinical year back at the University of Florida. (Go Gators!)
My own family includes myself, my wonderful, loving husband, our two mixed breed dogs, Jack and Lawtey, our very social cat, Gavin, and our slightly less social, but still friendly, corn snake, Shakespeare. My path to this career has been a winding one, full of surprises and blessings, and I am honored to be part of this beautiful profession, helping pets and their families, from beginning to end.
Katie Stender, DVM
"It's a very challenging and emotional time when one has to make this difficult decision, but Dr. Katie's guidance, knowledge, wisdom and empathy reinforced what I already knew needed to happen and helped to keep those feelings of doubt and guilt at bay.
This experience began and ended with a hug. I was impressed that Dr. Katie immediately sat on the floor beside Hans' chair and began making over him. Her calm, gentle and respectful demeanor helped to soothe all of us and, as Hans took his last breaths, she was emotional, too. This speaks volumes for her character. She is truly an amazing person and I cannot thank her enough for everything.
Hans was an amazing dog and endured so much in his lifetime - abused, beaten, starved, heart worms, autoimmune situation, arthritis and DM - but he always managed to have a happy-go-lucky attitude through it all. He was truly a unique individual and I will always value the time that I was privileged to spend with him.
The attached blurred photo of him illustrates his spirit, vigor, vitality and not to mention his playful attitude and personality.
The house is emptier without him and his energy, but we're adapting.
Thank you for everything!"
Troy MillerJacksonville, Florida
"We had contacted Lap of Love about out 16 year old cat, Mr. Man. He was nearing the end of his life and had an intestinal blockage so we had to feed him several small meals a day so he could properly digest his food. He started doing very poorly and we though it was time and contacted Dr. Katie, only to have Mr. Man bounce back. So, we got another good six weeks together. Well, yesterday we knew it was time and we called again. You know when it is time, and it was time. Dr Katie came right away and helped us through the awful time. We so appreciate how she explained everything, how she assessed his health and told us her opinions, and how gently he finally went. She was so compassionate, and it was a blessing not having to take him to the ordinary vet office. He hated the cat carrier, he hated the car and he was an absolute terror at the vets. Using Lap of Love, we sat with him on the couch and he was not terrified or stressed as he would have been otherwise. She then took our baby to be cremated. Thank you so much"
Howard and Carla ArnerJacksonville, Florida
"Dr. Katie was meant to do this work. I admire people who are able to work with those of us who are grieving. I believe they have a "gift," and Dr. Katie has that calling. Thank you for making this difficult process easier by your professionalism, but mostly by your love of animals. It was evident from everything you did for O'Malley and his family."
Jean JacksonPonte Vedra, Florida
"It took me almost 3 months to be able to write this without sobbing .. trying to get through it because I have to share my experiences with Dr. Katie Stender's loving support during one of the hardest things I've ever had to do.
I've been owned by several cats but my precious Andi was by far the most special and we had the strongest bond of any cat I've had . (Here come the tears.)
She was rescued by a friend from the rafters of a construction home at barely 8 weeks old and it was love at first sight. She was a handful! So full of life.. she was so full of personality and was the best companion for a single person. We were family.
Way too young, at 11 1/2 Andi was diagnosed with liver disease after suddenly losing a lot of weight from not eating and had to have a feeding tube for 6 weeks and a lot of medicine for over 1.5 years when this April, she had declined so much that I couldn't bear to allow her to suffer, so my Vet referred me to Dr. Katie. This group of professionals have the biggest hearts and were truly angels sent to help me deal with the horrific decision I was being forced to make.
Dr. Katie came to meet with Andi and helped me with an interim plan and guided me on what to watch for to know when it was "time".
That time came and I honestly believe the hardest call I've ever made was calling to schedule Dr. Katie to come and help me send my precious Andi to Rainbow bridge.
On that day, Dr. Katie's kindness, empathy and love were amazing. She explained the process and allowed me time to say goodbye to my baby, and to hold her throughout the process until I felt her little body relax and leave her pain behind. Dr. Katie said at that moment that my sweet baby had just gotten her angel wings. I believe the whole process was the most peaceful and dignified way to let my baby go in the comfort of her own home.
I will never forget my sweet Andi. She will live forever in my heart. And I will never be able to thank Dr. Katie enough for helping me through this process."
Pamela CaughmanPonte Vedra, Florida
"First, I'd like to say that the phone conversations prior to the event were amazing, informative and everyone I spoke to had such compassion and a true calling to this profession. Dr. Katie came to our home and it was like we were old friends. She was kind and gentle and her spirit was immediately calming to my husband and I. Cash, our poodle mix, was around 16 years old and developed seizures a few months ago as well as heart failure and he was struggling. She explained everything and within minutes he was at peace. I would recommend this service to anyone who is considering end of life care for their pet - these doctors are superb and I could not have asked for a better experience at such a difficult time. Thank you!"
Gemi JannottaJacksonville, Florida
"This was the hardest decision to make. Hurricane was given to my husband in college and was his first pet. A truly a college man's dog. He loved beer! He then became my running partner and best friend. He was not happy when we brought home our first human baby but he grew to love her and then his best buddy, our son came. Hurricane brought us so much joy and love for 15 1/2 years. Eventually he was just existing for us and not living. I had emailed lap of love the year before, but we couldn't do it mentally. So this time I called and they were so sweet. When the doctor came, we let our kids decide if they wanted to stay or go next door. They went next door. Even though our eyes were never dry and Dr. Katie cried with us, it was the kindest thing to do for him. Dr. Katie is amazing, compassionate and so caring. She felt our pain along with us and talked us through it. She made the decision easier when she talked about his dementia and pain. Dr. Katie is the sweetest lady and I don't know how she does her job, but if we could of picked anyone we would have chosen her. My children handled it so well and I truly believe it was from the article Lap of Love emailed me. It helped me explain to them what was happening and let us cry and show our tears."
Hurricane Facemyersaint Johns, Florida
Pet Life and Loss Support Services
Affiliated Veterinary Emergency Center
Clay-Duval Pet Emergency Clinic
Emergency & Critical Care Pet Hospital
St Augustine Regional Veterinary Emergency Center
Helping families in the following areas:
We proudly serves families in all of the northeast portion of Florida, from Fernandina down to Middleburg, including St. Johns. Due to the expansive area covered, there may be a travel fee incurred. Please call for details.
Preferred methods of payment are check (made to 'Lap of Love') or cash.
Most pet insurance companies cover Lap of Love services. Please have any paperwork ready for the veterinarian to complete so that you can submit it for reimbursement.
1650 Margaret St. Ste. 302 # 207Jacksonville, FL 32204
The Florida Times: A death in the family: Saying goodbye to Ruby Ann