Advisory Board

Side by Side

Board Chair

Dr. Chris Bessent

Chris Ann Bessent, D.V.M., MSOM, Dipl. O.M.
Dr. Bessent practiced in her holistic veterinary practice treating horses, dogs, cattle, cats and birds on a daily basis in southern Wisconsin for 28 years. Dr Bessent received a bachelor’s degree in animal science in 1984 and a veterinary degree in 1988 from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Following five years of traditional veterinary practice Bessent pursued postgraduate training in veterinary chiropractic, veterinary acupuncture and Chinese veterinary herbology. She is certified in veterinary chiropractic (1993), veterinary acupuncture (1994) and Veterinary Chinese Herbology (1997) from the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association and the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society respectively. She has also completed a master’s degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (2014) for humans at the Midwest College of Oriental Medicine and has achieved board certification in Oriental Medicine including herbs, acupuncture and food therapies.

Following years of use of Chinese herbal combinations and acupuncture in her holistic veterinary medical practice Dr. Bessent founded Herbsmith, Inc. which produces herbal supplements for pets.

After many years of practicing holistic veterinary medicine, she noted that animals who were fed well healed well. She firmly believes freeze dry processes provide that level of nutrition to pets. She therefore founded and manages Wisconsin Freeze Dried, a “state of the art” boutique freeze dry pet food manufacturer in Oconomowoc, WI.

Dr. Bessent lives on an 8-acre farm with 3 Labrador retrievers, 3 thoroughbred horses, and two cats in East Troy, Wisconsin.

Dr. Chris Ann Bessent

Dr. Alison Birken


Dr. Alison Birken received her degree in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Florida. Following her graduation, she served an internship at the nationally renowned Florida Veterinary Specialists in Tampa, Florida, where she gained extensive experience in the emergency, routine and preventative treatment of a wide variety of small animals. Upon completion of her internship, she spent 3 years working in a well established general practice in Hollywood, Florida. Her expertise includes all aspects of small animal medicine and surgery.

Dr. Birken actively participates in continuing education seminars several times per year. She is a member in good standing of The American Veterinary Medical Association and The Florida Veterinary Medical Association.

“My passion for the care and wellbeing of animals began when I was a child. For as long as I can remember, I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian. Throughout my entire career, I have always strived to take care of every pet as if it were my own. I can think of no better way to spend my day than bringing joy to animal lovers by returning their pets to good health,” said Dr. Birken.

Dr. Alison Birken

Dr. Arielle Herndobler


Owner, Medical Director at Healing Tails Veterinary Physical Rehabilitation & Holistic Medicine Clinic Chicago, Illinois as a veterinarian with over 8 years of experience, she has practiced in busy walk-in practices, offered relief services for corporate veterinary clinics and spent time honing her soft tissue surgical skills as a spay/neuter surgeon. Though she has a diverse background, she has a special interest in holistic and rehabilitation medicine.

She holds several additional certifications including: veterinary acupuncture through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society and veterinary spinal manipulation therapy through the Healing Oasis. Currently, she is pursuing certification in canine physical rehabilitation through the University of Tennessee.

Dr. Arielle Herndobler

Dr. Lisa Bane


Dr. Bane graduated from Colorado State University Veterinary School in 1989 and soon after owned my own veterinary clinic in Telluride Colorado. Dr. Bane is a Vet at All Paws Holistic Veterinary Clinic.  She is an avid dog lover and describes herself as follows: “I worked in the mountains with a range of patients- from horses and cattle, wildlife, to dogs and cats. I was always interested in optimal health for the life of my patients. As Telluride grew, my clientele, which ranged from ranchers to movie stars, became open to new therapies and I went to Acupuncture school at CSU and studied with an herbalist in New Mexico. I was certified by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society. I moved to Boulder, Colorado after selling my practice and worked at a holistic veterinary practice where I learned therapeutic diet and supplement therapies for animals.”

“In 2016, my husband and I, kids, dogs and a cat moved to the Bay Area so he could follow his dream to run a start-up in the software sector and I found Dr. Reed and the wonderful All Paws staff!”

Dr. Lisa Bane

Dr. Kate Steinhacker

Dr. Kate Steinhacker has been a veterinarian since graduating from the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine in 2002.

She has been practicing integrative veterinary medicine for 15 years. Dr. Kate has certifications in veterinary acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, Chinese nutritional therapy, and TuiNa. She earned a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine through the study of the effects of astragalus on specific immune system cells. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture.

Dr. Kate’s passion is designing customized preventative and treatment protocols for each and every patient.

SBS-Dr. Kate Steinhacker