South Central PA: Lancaster, Dauphin, Lebanon & York Counties
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 with an engraved nameplate and will be returned to your primary care veterinarian within two weeks. They can also be made available directly from the crematory or mailed to your home or office.
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 in White Chapel Memorial Park in Feasterville, PA.
There may be a fee if addtional 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.
My interest in veterinary medicine began my junior year of high school, when I was fortunate enough to shadow a local veterinarian as part of a school requirement. I have been in love with the veterinary profession ever since. I continue to learn more about veterinary medicine every day, and I have come to realize it is as much about supporting people as it is about helping animals. I truly enjoy that I am able to do both in my career.
Born in central New York, I grew up near Lynchburg, Virginia, where my parents still live today. While we technically moved south to accommodate my dad’s career, my parents really appreciated getting away from the “lake effect” snow and taking advantage of the warmer weather. I liked Virginia as well and chose to stay there for both college and veterinary school. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in biology at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, I moved to Blacksburg, Virginia, where I attended the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech and earned both a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM) degree and a master of public health (MPH) degree.
I recently moved to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, an area I visited frequently in my childhood to spend holidays with extended family. Although my extended family has since moved out of the region, I am excited to be back in Harrisburg with my partner, two cats, and a princess of a dog, surrounded by such a wonderful sense of community and gorgeous landscape. When I am not working with clients and their furry loved ones, I look forward to spending time by the river and at the farmer’s market, exploring area hikes, testing local ski slopes, and finding out what other gems Pennsylvania has to offer. I also enjoy reading, listening to live music, dabbling in photography, and spending time with family.
Tigger, a third feline member of my family whom I affectionately called my “forever foster,” only lived with me for the second half of her life. She battled chronic kidney disease for much of that time. In August of 2015, when Tigger finally indicated to me it was time for her to leave this world, I decided to drive an hour with her to have a very close friend and veterinarian perform the compassionate act of euthanasia for her. The whole process of saying goodbye to Tigger ended up being more difficult for me than I anticipated, and I found it especially valuable to have someone I trusted perform the euthanasia and be there to support and comfort me afterward.
While I may be meeting you for the first time, I strive to act in ways that allow every family to feel the same level of trust, support, and comfort that I experienced at Tigger’s passing. If I can make a difficult time for you and your fur-baby the slightest bit easier, I will have done the job I set out to do.
One of the most common questions asked of me as a practicing veterinarian is “How did you know you wanted to become a veterinarian?” The simplest answer is that I love working with animals: I want to help them to live healthy and comfortable lives. I also enjoy working with people and assisting them to become more educated caregivers with their family pets.
Growing up in England and the United States, my childhood was dedicated to caring for every living creature that would cross my path. My family’s dogs, cats, gerbils, hamsters, fish, frogs and turtles absorbed my attention and affections. I continued my passion for animals by obtaining an undergraduate degree at The Pennsylvania State University, then graduating from The University of Pennsylvania with a degree in veterinary medicine. During the long hours of learning in the teaching hospital, I reflected upon the relationships that paralleled mine as a child, that enduring bond that owners and animals develop. Beyond just providing care, my education enables me to provide owners with thoughtful advice on keeping their pets comfortable throughout the breadth of their lives, from birth through maturity and well into their senior years.
After graduating, I moved to Lancaster, settling in with my husband and motley crew of rescue dogs, Knight, Ella and Karma. My professional career started at an emergency facility, helping families treat and care for their beloved pets while striving to ease the stress during times of illness and trauma. I have coupled the emergency experience with a position at a primary care veterinarian hospital, coaching owners on keeping a healthy housemate.
For me, being a vet enables me to help others foster the human-animal bond. I believe that as animals age, it becomes paramount to help ease discomfort and pain that pets may experience. I am a believer in Lap of Love because we allow people the option of offering their companions a last act of compassion, a peaceful way to say goodbye at home. Years ago, my veterinarian was able to let my family and me say goodbye to Buster, our family dog, by providing an at home euthanasia. This had a lasting and positive impact on me and my memories of my best friend.
Carling Sitterley, DVM
"I cant thank Dr. Carling enough for having such a amazing ability to make everyone as comfortable as can be expected in a situation like this. I think she made it seem so much more peaceful than going to the office to do. "
Julie SteudlerMountville, Pennsylvania
"While nothing can describe how difficult it was, Dr. Carling and Lap of Love made it the kindest and least difficult final moment. Totally satisfied. Would recommend to anyone without hesitation."
Donald AngenyTower City, Pennsylvania
"There are no adequate words to express our gratitude for Dr. Carling. Saying goodbye to Lindsie was one of the most difficult things we have had to do, and Dr. Carling was just wonderful. Her extremely gentle kindness and her genuine concern for both Lindsie and Dave and I, brought us so much peace in a heartbreaking situation. We are both so grateful that Lindsie had this compassionate soul by her side to aid in a peaceful passing, and we are equally grateful that she was there by our side."
Lisa & Dave FisherAnnville, Pennsylvania
"Dr. Jo was so wonderful with Bailey. Very caring. She made it a peaceful passing for my beloved Bailey and for me."
Linda AustinLititz, Pennsylvania
"This was my first time having to put my pet at peace. So many questions and concerns went through my mind leading up to the day of. Is it the right thing, will it be painful, how will I deal with this, how will it work doing it in my home? Cooper was my baby, I rescued him at 6 months and only had a few years with him before cancer took over his body. Needless to say I was a complete wreck. Lap of Love were so understanding and did everything in their power to ease my mind and work with me. Dr. Carling was an angel. I was so scared and did not know what to expect, but she was there to answer any questions and even though she didn't know Cooper prior she did not make it seem that way. She was there to comfort Cooper, my son and myself. I cannot say enough wonderful things about the entire process, from the ladies I spoke to on the phone who were so comforting to Dr. Carling herself. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. <3"
Lindy LewisPalmyra, Pennsylvania
"Dr. Carling made this difficult time so much easier. Thank you for your compassion."
Frank and Bonnie Lama LamaLemoyne, Pennsylvania
Pet Life and Loss Support Services
Lancaster: Brenda Edwards, CELEBRATING THE BOND: Grief Recovery Programs
Lancaster: Pet Emergency Treatment Services, Inc (PETS)
Red Lion: Tiffany Ayres, Patton Veterinary Hospital
York: Animal Emergency and Referral Center of York
Philadelphia: Veterinary Grief Counseling Program
Mechanicsburg: Rossmoyne Animal Emergency Trauma Center
Harrisburg: Janice Newcomer, Group Leader, Associated Psychologists
Gaithersburg: VCA Veterinary Referral Associates
Hummelstown: Katryn Lavanture
York: Elizabeth S. Revell, Ph.D.
Day By Day Pet Caregiver Support Circles
Helping families in the following areas:
We proudly serve the South Central PA area, including Lancaster, Dauphin, Lebanon & York counties. Due to the expansive area covered, there may be a travel fee of $30 - $75 based on your location.
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.
Lap of LovePO Box 5024Lancaster, PA 17606-5024
WGAL News 8: Veterinarians Provide End-of-Life Care at Pet's Home