Atlanta Georgia

Lauren Cassady, DVM

I grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, and I always had a cat by my side.  Although I had an interest in medicine during high school and college, I did not know that I wanted to become a vet until my junior year at Furman University.  Our cat, Lilly, had escaped from the house and had been in an accident.  She was rushed to the vet where her life was saved.  That summer, I began working for the doctor who helped Lilly.  Through my family’s experience and the compassion of Dr. Stark, I realized that pet parents can be healed on an emotional level by veterinarians helping their pets.  I knew from that point forward that I wanted to be a veterinarian.

In my career, I have been a general practitioner, emergency vet, and practice owner.  The one interaction during all the stages of my career where I feel like I can make the biggest difference in the lives of both pets and their families’ is during the final days and minutes of a pet’s life.  When I can ease the suffering of a pet in a way that the family feels at peace with their decision, then I know I have done my job.  I am honored to be working with Lap of Love, and helping families in this unique way.

Cary Mackey, DVM

I grew up in Tidewater Virginia in a house filled with animals.  We have always had at least three cats and one dog at any given time. My close association with animals from birth naturally cultivated a love for taking care of them and learning all about them.  This led me to follow my family roots to the Deep South for college and veterinary school receiving my Bachelor of Science in Zoology and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degrees from Auburn University.  In veterinary school, I developed special interests in surgery, feline medicine and dermatology but since starting in general practice, I realized there is a great need for learning how to care for geriatric pets and pets at the hospice stage. No time is more important with your pet than at the end of their long life. I believe we have a wonderful gift of euthanasia in our profession that helps our pets pass with dignity and in peace.  I am honored to serve you, your family, and most importantly your pets with Lap of Love. 




Ashley Payne, DVM

I was born and raised in Alpharetta, GA and attended Woodward Academy. My journey to becoming a veterinarian began when I got my own dog at the age of 7. My wish had finally come true! 

I grew up in a medical family and knew that I wanted to pursue medicine in some fashion, but it wasn’t until my freshman year at Auburn University that I found my calling. I was working in a veterinarian’s office when my beloved Sheltie got sick and had to be hospitalized. As an employee at the veterinary office, I witnessed first-hand the compassion they showed to both my dog and me. It was then that my love and animals and medicine came together. I returned to Auburn and changed my major to Zoology. After that, I was accepted to the University of Florida College of Veterinarian Medicine and earned my DVM. 

I feel so privileged to be able to guide other families through the process of helping their pets, whether it be to improve their quality of life or end their suffering. 

Jo Millard, DVM

I grew up on a small farm in southern Michigan and have always had multiple pets. From a young age, I always wanted to "help" the sick barn cats and save the baby pigs; I loved it whenever the vet came out for a farm visit! Thus began my quest of becoming a veterinarian to help animals. I ecstatically began my veterinary training at Michigan State University, and despite life's twists and turns, very successfully completed and received my DVM from Cornell University in 1994. 

But 1994 also brought some unexpected life changes - the death of my father and the birth of my son, who a year later developed progressive special needs. I have since spent the last 20+ years in central New York learning how to balance caring for animals with caregiving for people. Along the way, I’ve realized that by caring for pets, we are helping their human caregivers as well! I have found that I help the most when I can take time to be present with clients, listen to their concerns and offer compassion. 

As no journey is ever straight, my most recent life "twist" has brought me to Atlanta to further assist my son—now a young adult—in pursuit of his dreams. And as fate would have it, I can continue to pursue my own as well. I have a great desire to assist families making end-of-life decisions for their pets in the comfort of their homes. As a Lap of Love veterinarian, I can be present, caring, and compassionate with pet caregivers in their deepest time of need, and give their cherished companions the dignity and respect they deserve. I look forward to serving families in the metro Atlanta area.