Office: 314-770-2800 | Emergencies: 314-822-7600


Janet Chipperfield D.V.M (Dr. Chip) Founder of Family Animal Hospital Like most veterinarians, Dr. Jan Chipperfield has always loved animals. As a child, she drove her parents crazy bringing home stray dogs and cats, rabbits and any other critter who crossed her path. Born and raised in Kirkwood, MO, Dr. Chip graduated from Kirkwood High School in 1981 and received her BS in Physical Education from Southeast Missouri University in 1985. She then took a detour from her calling as a veterinarian and spent the next 15 years helping homeless animals. Dr. Chip did her part in the animal welfare field by rescuing animals from neglect and abuse while serving as a humane officer with the Humane Society of Missouri. She conducted cruelty investigations and taught school children the importance of treating all living creatures with kindness and respect. During times of disaster and crisis, Dr. Chip was a first-responder and rescued animals from floods in Missouri and Minnesota. She oversaw shelter operations for the Humane Society of Missouri, the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri in Cape Girardeau and St. Louis County Animal Control. But she still wanted to become a veterinarian. “I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian before I could spell the word,” she said. “Medicine fascinates me and animals have always been a part of my life. I can’t imagine my world without them.” Dr. Chip earned her DVM degree at the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2004. The recipient of many scholarships and awards during her academic career, Dr. Chip most values receiving The Gentle Doctor Award during her senior year. Bestowed by her peers, this honor recognizes the veterinarian who exemplifies the highest ethical and professional integrity in patient care. And that’s what Family Animal Hospital is all about—patient care. Sometimes the doctor/patient relationship becomes second priority with all the high-tech advances in the medical field. “We are a small hospital. We know our patients by sight and know our clients by name. I spend most of my time on the floor with my patients, finding out who they are and what their issues are,” she said. “It’s about our pets—they cannot speak for themselves and they rely on us to understand.” Dr. Chip continues helping animals through her volunteer work at St. Louis County Animal Care and Control, and teaching veterinary students about shelter issues and compassion fatigue. She resides in Maryland Heights with her 2 and 4-legged family. And, yes, she really does want you to call her “Dr. Chip.”
Joy Lee, DVM Staff Veterinarian Dr. Lee knew at an early age what she wanted to do when she grew up. At the age of 5 she proudly announced to her parents that she wanted to be a vegetarian. Although she still loves a good burger, she loves her profession even more! Growing up in a small town in Ohio, Dr. Lee got her animal experience by participating in 4-H projects (horsemanship and dog training), working at the county animal shelter and at a dairy research facility where she got really good at hand milking a cow! She earned her undergraduate degree from Miami University of Ohio and attended The Ohio State University for veterinary school. After graduation in 1997 she practiced in the Cleveland area, got married and started a family. Her husband’s work transferred them to the STL region 12 years ago. While working for the Humane Society of Missouri, she had the good fortune of meeting Dr. Chip and is now loving being a member of Family Animal Hospital! In her free time Dr. Lee is busy keeping up with 2 cats, 2 almost adult children and a loving and supportive husband.
Patty Brauns Veterinary Technician Patty attended Jefferson College in Hillsboro and completed the vet tech program. She has over a decade of experience in the veterinary field, working side by side with Dr. Chipperfield at the Humane Society of Missouri. Patty’s family includes a Golden Retriever, a three-legged cat and a talkative bird. Patty enjoys running, hiking, boating, and participates in triathlons. You’ll meet Patty in the exam room, treatment room or surgery, as she is our full-time technician at Family Animal Hospital.

LISA RELLER, Vet Tech, Growing up with grandparents that owned 2 local Pet Shops way back in the day, there wasn’t an animal or critter Lisa didn’t have as a pet growing up. After High School she traveled a lot and lived in CA while working towards her nursing degree.  But it wasn’t long after working in the nursing field at a local hospital that she decided to go back to school at 30 and graduated in 2014 from the Vet Tech Institute at Hickey College as a Veterinary Technician. She is obsessed with anything zombie, and loves sunflowers! Spending time with the 4 pups, hubby, and the kiddo who is currently serving in the U.S.Army, (so proud) are her favorite things to do amongst having lots of other adventures!

Mara Flick RVT/Veterinary Assistant Mara graduated from UM-St. Louis in 1993 with a BS in business and worked for McDonnell Douglas/Boeing for 13 years. Apparently she enjoyed UM- St. Louis so much that she returned and received a BA in Physical Education in 2003. After trying many careers, Mara returned to her first love – animals. She graduated from Penn Foster College with her RVT Degree/Certification in 2010 and worked for the Animal Medical Center from 2007 until 2019. Her free time is spent with her husband and friends and 2 dogs. Her winter activities include hockey, hockey and hockey. She has played and coached for over 25 years, including a statistician gig with the St. Louis Blues that lasted over 20 years. Sand volleyball is also one of her favorite sports, but she can honestly say she hasn’t found many sports she doesn’t like,
Mara’s other dog This is Mara’s other dog. We didn’t want it to feel left out
Louise Smith Volunteer/Wake-Up Specialst Louise attended the University of Vermont and Webster University, and was an elementary education teacher for 25 years. She has also been a surgery assistant for 25 years. Three small dogs keep Louise busy at home. She also enjoys reading and cooking. Louise attends to our animals who are waking up from surgery, making the recovery process so much nicer for them (and US too!). Her gentle touch and sharp eyes allow our surgery schedule to run smoothly.
Sara Townsend REceptionist Sara has been with us off and on for about 8 years. When she’s here, she can be found at the front desk, answering phones and greeting patients and clients. When she’s not here, Sara is a serious on-line gamer.
Teri Sharp Business Manager Teri is a graduate of St. Louis University with a degree in accounting. She handles the administrative side of the business. Except purchasing, which she leaves to the experts.
Millie Carpenter Receptionist/tech Millie claims to have no history before she mysteriously washed up on our doorstep. We think she is in the witness protection program. Rumor has it that Millie is the only person who knows the truth behind the tragic death of Senor Don Gato. Did he really fall accidentally as local authorities in Madrid claim? Or was he pushed by Muttley, henchman of the criminal mastermind Snidely Whiplash?

Jackie Ellison

Jackie moved to Missouri from northern Illinois in 2017. She and her husband purchased their first home and immediately brought home their first rescue dog from the group she volunteered with in Illinois. They have since added another dog and two cats to their family (with the two senior cats they have fostered in loving memory).
Jackie graduated from Lindenwood University in 2019 with a BA in Elementary Education and is currently working on her MA in Human Resources Management. In addition to her years of teaching in child care centers and public schools, she has always been involved in animal care and welfare. For her 16th birthday, she and her mother began volunteering at a Humane Society in Illinois. She stayed for 8 years. She has volunteered and worked at other animal clinics and shelters in both Missouri and Illinois.
In her free time, Jackie enjoys reading, gardening and baking
Jackie has been a client at FAH since 2018. She truly enjoys providing the same kindness and care to clients and patients that she has always received.

Mary Beth Bible

Born and raised in St. Louis, Mary Beth has always had a great passion and love for animals. Ask anyone who knows her and they'll tell you the exact same thing! She decided at a very young age that she wanted to both volunteer, assist with rescues and rehabilitation, and one day have a career working in the veterinary field. She volunteered at The Wildlife Rescue Center, as well as at multiple animal rights organizations functions and fundraisers over the years.

Her family includes her husband and their two 4-legged English Bulldog "fur children", Axel and Rosie. They like taking family trips with them to their country house, and taking them to visit their grandparents. Mary Beth and her husband enjoy watching movies together, playing board games and trying new restaurants. She loves to cook new recipes and bake yummy treats, too! She likes jigsaw puzzles, reading and getting her garden ready for Spring/Summer!