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Meet Our Team

Meet our caring & compassionate veterinary team!
Veterinarian/Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Craig Staehle

Dr. Craig Staehle - Dr. Craig received his veterinary doctorate from the University of Illinois in 1996.

Dr. Craig Staehle - Dr. Craig received his veterinary doctorate from the University of Illinois in 1996. He began his career practicing in the Chicagoland area at a clinic that offered an excellent opportunity to treat an array of exotic species. Later that year, he moved to Tampa, Florida where he practiced for a couple of years. While in Florida he worked predominately with dogs and cats, but still worked with some exotic patients. In 1998, he and his wife Kimberly moved to the Saint Louis area. Prior to opening Best Friends Animal Hospital, he practiced in the Saint Peters and O’Fallon areas of Missouri. Dr. Craig says the greatest part of his job is the joy in working with animals and the huge diversity of species and medical challenges that veterinary medicine provides. His particular areas of interest include orthopedic surgery, dentistry, and exotic animal medicine.

Dr. Craig is married to Dr. Kimberly, and they have two children, Kyle and Cassidy. He grew up in the Chicago suburbs. Growing up, his father played baseball for the Chicago White Sox and other major league baseball teams. He, his parents, and his three brothers were always very actively involved in sports. Dr. Craig has always been interested in animals. As a child, he wanted to be a marine biologist. “I always wanted to work with animals and in college, I had a sort of epiphany, and in one moment I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian.” Over the years, Dr. Craig has owned quite a list of pets, including dogs, cats, fish, amphibians, and reptiles. “I am blessed to have the greatest job in the world. You get to work with wonderful pets and have a job that never stops challenging you to learn more, do more, and help provide animals with the best life we can.” Dr. Craig especially enjoys treating reptiles and is also certified in PennHip. When not practicing he spends time with family and takes taekwondo. In 2019 he won the PetPlan Veterinarian of the Year award beating out over 2,000 nominees from the US and Canada. We couldn’t be more proud of him!

Veterinarian/Managerial

Dr. Kimberly Staehle

Dr. Kimberly Staehle obtained her doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1995 and her master’s in reproductive physiology in 1996 from the University of Illinois.

Dr. Kimberly Staehle obtained her doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1995 and her master’s in reproductive physiology in 1996 from the University of Illinois. After graduation, she moved to Tampa, Florida. In Tampa, she was an associate at a small animal hospital and volunteered at the Clearwater Aquarium. At the aquarium, she was able to work with one of her loves, marine mammals. In 1998, she moved to the St. Louis area with her husband, Dr. Craig. She practiced small animal medicine in Kirkwood, Missouri. Prior to opening Best Friends Animal Hospital, she was the manager of scientific affairs for Highland VetPharma.

Dr. Kimberly grew up in Granite City, Illinois. She has 4 sisters. She had many pets of all kinds growing up, and knew early on that she wanted to be a veterinarian. She feels blessed to have had the opportunities to have volunteered at the St. Louis Children’s Zoo and worked with dolphins at several facilities in the Florida Keys, as well as at Sea World in Orlando. Growing up she enjoyed gymnastics and cheerleading. She used her gymnastics and fitness skills first teaching aerobics and then competing in a national fitness competition. These days she spends a lot of time transporting her children to and from activities, while also sneaking in some pole fitness. She is particularly fond of the Great Dane breed and, along with Dr. Craig, has owned 8 of them, 5 which were adopted thru rescue organizations and 3 others which were also needing homes. Drs. Craig and Kimberly currently have 2 great Danes (Otis and Piper) and 3cats (Sally, Kibble and Ellie).

Veterinarian

Dr. Deni Stallons

Dr. Deni Stallons joined our team in May 2011. She attended McKendree College prior to graduating from the University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine in 2001.

Dr. Deni Stallons joined our team in May 2011. She attended McKendree College prior to graduating from the University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine in 2001.

In 2006, she married Paul and now has two sons, Jack and Landon. She has previously worked at Carey’s Pet Hospital and most recently at Bellson Animal Hospital. She especially enjoys internal medicine in dogs and cats. Her dogs, Winnie and Apple, are full of energy, which also keeps her busy!

Veterinarian

Dr. Lindsay Huffman

Dr. Lindsay graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree.

Dr. Lindsay graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. She also received her Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Sciences with a minor in Leadership Studies from U of I. Dr. Lindsay has an interest in internal medicine and dentistry. In her free time, she enjoys being outdoors and spending time with her family, friends, and two rescue dogs.
Veterinarian

Dr. Lindsey Bailey

Dr. Bailey graduated from the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island, Canada. She also received her Bachelor of Science in Biology with a...

Dr. Bailey graduated from the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island, Canada. She also received her Bachelor of Science in Biology with a minor in Chemistry at the University of Missouri - St. Louis. Dr. Bailey previously worked at an emergency veterinary clinic and has a special interest in cardiology, radiology, and emergency medicine. Dr. Bailey has one dog (Penny) and three cats (Leonard, Carol, and Gary) at home. When she isn't playing with her pets or spending time with her husband, Dave, she enjoys photography and martial arts.
Business Manager/CFO

Darlene

Darlene, our financial officer, joined Best Friends in February 2007 after having worked for the State of Illinois for 16 years.

Darlene, our financial officer, joined Best Friends in February 2007 after having worked for the State of Illinois for 16 years. She has 3 beautiful daughters – Emily, Sarah, and Audrey – and 1 precious granddaughter, Courtney, as well as a cat, CC (Crazy Cat), two bernedoodles, and six grandpuppies. She feels fortunate to have been blessed throughout her life with a wonderful family, friends and employment, and when not spending time with them, enjoys doing most any kind of home improvement, reading, making stained glass projects, and playing video games.
Practice Manager

Bernadette

Bernadette has been providing excellent customer service at Best Friends for a couple of years now.

Bernadette has been providing excellent customer service at Best Friends for a couple of years now. She is the proud mother of 5 amazing children. Her oldest is currently attending Purdue University, and her youngest 2 are in 4th grade. She also has 3 fur babies that she adores. 'B' enjoys spending time with her kids including activities with the Boy and Girl Scouts, sports, school events, family dinners, and game nights at home. Her husband, Sal, has proudly served in the military for over 20 years. They've been happily married for 20 years. Bernadette is fun-loving, caring, and always striving to be the best!
Lead Customer Care Representative

Cerelia

Cerelia joined Best Friends in the fall of 2017. She has been working in the veterinary field as a receptionist since 2007.

Cerelia joined Best Friends in the fall of 2017. She has been working in the veterinary field as a receptionist since 2007. She is a wonderful asset to our hospital and we enjoy having her. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, which includes a cute Cavalier mix, a husband, and 3 lively boys. Life is always busy with 3 boys who are involved in various sports.
Customer Care Representative

Tara

Tara started at Best Friends in July 2020. She was born and raised a military brat and grew up all over the world.

Tara started at Best Friends in July 2020. She was born and raised a military brat and grew up all over the world. She is a retired Air Force wife, allowing her to live in and travel to multiple states and countries. Tara is a proud mom of two daughters currently in college and a sweet Golden Retriever, Ellie. In her free time, she likes to read and meal prep. She really enjoys a plan and checklists. She also loves anything to do with Christmas time and always has her tree up early.
Customer Care Representative

Cori

Cori joined the Best Friends crew as a customer care representative in September 2020. She has enjoyed working in customer service for eight years.

Cori joined the Best Friends crew as a customer care representative in September 2020. She has enjoyed working in customer service for eight years. She moved from Oregon to Illinois a little over a year ago.

In her free time, Cori enjoys spending time with her fiancé, Matthew, watching movies, tv, and taking trips to the comic book store. She is passionate about reading, photography, art, nature, animals, and her family. She is proud to be working in a fantastic place with people who are so caring and passionate about animals.

Customer Care Representative/ Tech Assistant

Mariah

Mariah has been with our team since March 2021 and previously worked at a local humane society for two years.

Mariah has been with our team since March 2021 and previously worked at a local humane society for two years. She has always had a passion for animals and currently works as a customer care representative and nurse assistant, but she hopes to soon get certified to join the nurse team! Mariah has three feline kiddos that she rescued, and Basset Hounds are her favorite dog breed.
Customer Care Representative

Vanessa

Bio coming soon!

Customer Care Representative

Angie

Angie joined Best Friends in the fall of 2022. She has an amazing husband, three kids, and two very spoiled dogs.

Angie joined Best Friends in the fall of 2022. She has an amazing husband, three kids, and two very spoiled dogs. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, dogs, and especially her horse named Snap!
Customer Care Representative

Megan

Megan was shipped into our team all the way from South Texas after a decade of living all around the Pacific as part of a military family.

Megan was shipped into our team all the way from South Texas after a decade of living all around the Pacific as part of a military family. Craving seasons and actual cold weather, she, her husband, and her son decided Illinois was a great fit!

Exploring the area is her favorite thing to do, especially bookstores and hole-in-the-wall restaurants. She loves to cook, mostly Japanese and Korean food, as that’s what her family requests above all. All that perusing of bookstores has amassed a nice library in her home that she frequently escapes to in her oversized reading chair. To wind down after a long day, she cuddles up with her pets, who are increasingly jealous that she comes home smelling like so many other pets every day and plotting revenge!

Vet Tech & Customer Care Rep

Jenn

Jenn has been a veterinary technician since 2002 and with Best Friends Animal Hospital since 2012.

Jenn has been a veterinary technician since 2002 and with Best Friends Animal Hospital since 2012. She also works as a customer care representative, when needed, and does the clinic social media. She is the proud mother of twin boys, Wesley and Rory, to whom she is teaching her love of animals and art. She is also the mother to Helen of Troy, a boxer/husky mix, Professor X, a tortie cat, and Princess Poppy, a crested gecko. In her spare time, she spends time with her family, furthers her education in Art History, and relaxes when she can.
Lead Licensed Veterinary Technician

Robin

Robin joined our team in September of 2015. She graduated from Vatterott's veterinary technician program and we were lucky enough to hire her!

Robin joined our team in September of 2015. She recently graduated from Vatterott's veterinary technician program and we were lucky enough to hire her!

Fortunately, she loves it here! She has three cats - Lindon Jean, Joanie Marie, and Jackie Lynn. They love it when she plays her guitar and sings to them...NOT! She loves her new career and can't wait to see what the future holds!

Licensed Veterinary Technician

Danielle

Danielle joined the team in 2018 as a licensed veterinary technician. She graduated from the Vet Tech Institute of Hickey College in September of 2017.

Danielle joined the team in 2018 as a licensed veterinary technician. She graduated from the Vet Tech Institute of Hickey College in September of 2017. She loves horses and has a blue heeler named Bindi, an English setter named Sadie, and a redbone coonhound named Faline.. Smart, driven, and very caring, Danielle has quickly become a great asset to the team.
Veterinary Technician

Erin

Erin joined the Best Friends team in August of 2015. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Murray State University in Kentucky in May 2015.

Erin joined the Best Friends team in August of 2015. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Murray State University in Kentucky in May 2015. She has been with Best Friends since August of 2015. She owns 2 adorable pit bull terrier mixes – Dottie and Ruth. In her spare time, Erin enjoys running and spending time with her family and friends.
Veterinary Technician

Karrie

Karrie graduated from her veterinary technology program at SICCM in 2014. Since then, she's been working in the veterinary field but didn't join our team until June 2017.

Karrie graduated from her veterinary technology program at SICCM in 2014. Since then, she's been working in the veterinary field but didn't join our team until June 2017. In her free time, she likes to draw, spend time with her family, read, go on nature hikes, and watch movies. She is the proud mother of a beautiful daughter and owns three dogs named Pepper, Luca, and Meliodas. She also has an array of exotic pets, including birds and reptiles, which makes her our go-to for our exotic patients.
Veterinary Technician

Lauren

Lauren graduated from Jefferson College Veterinary Technician Program & joined our team in 2019.

Lauren graduated from Jefferson College Veterinary Technician Program & joined our team in 2019.. She is a mother of 2 boys who love to interact with their 3 dogs and 2 cats. Her favorite hobby is to not only rescue dogs but to also take care of plants. Lauren’s husband is a certified dog trainer, which is good as he keeps the whole crew together!
Veterinary Technician

Zac

Zac joined Best Friends in August 2020. He graduated from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville with a Bachelor of Arts in Integrative Biology.

Zac joined Best Friends in August 2020. He graduated from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville with a Bachelor of Arts in Integrative Biology. He has been a Keeper at the Endangered Wolf Center, where one of his challenges was training Swift foxes. He was an educator at the St. Louis Zoo, teaching children ages 5-17, and has volunteered at the Wildlife Rescue Center. One of Zac’s greatest achievements was earning his Eagle Scout rank.

Zac has a dog named Zeus whom he spends as much time with as he can. He enjoys spending time with his girlfriend and family and traveling to places he has never been. He loves being outdoors and visiting zoos and wildlife recovery institutions. "I have always loved working with animals and am thrilled to be working at Best Friends. Everyone here is so friendly and it is one big family here!”

Licensed Veterinary Technician

Teresa

Teresa joined Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resources over 15 years ago. She has her BS in Animal Science from the University of Missouri.

Teresa joined Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resources over 15 years ago. She has her BS in Animal Science from the University of Missouri. She also has her LVN. She enjoys anesthesia and surgery the most, but seeing your pets grow up and grow old is the reason she is still here after all these years. Teresa shares her home with her husband, Rick, her kids, Reed and Addison, and her wonderful dogs, Ruby and Dallas.
Veterinary Technician

Sam

Sam enjoys spending time with her husband and close friends. She has three dogs and one cat, Ruger, Violet, Piston, and Marble.

Sam enjoys spending time with her husband and close friends. She has three dogs and one cat, Ruger, Violet, Piston, and Marble. Sam is a total farm kid and likes antique farm equipment, cows, and sunflowers. She started at Best Friends in December of 2022.
Veterinary Technician

Nicole

Nicole joined our team in September of 2023. She has worked with animals since she graduated in 2017 as a groomer and then switched to veterinary medicine in 2020.

Nicole joined our team in September of 2023. She has worked with animals since she graduated in 2017 as a groomer and then switched to veterinary medicine in 2020. Nicole has a husband, one daughter, and two cats. They have lived in Mississippi, Washington, and most recently, the Netherlands, but she is originally from southeast Iowa. Nicole loves to read fantasy books, crochet, and embroider in her free time. She is very excited to join our team here at Best Friends.
Veterinary Technician

Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn has been a technician since Graduating from the Vatterott Vet Tech Program in 2016! She joined the Best Friend's team in July 2023.

Kaitlyn has been a technician since Graduating from the Vatterott Vet Tech Program in 2016! She joined the Best Friend's team in July 2023. In her free time, Kaitlyn loves to cook and surround herself with family. She has three cats named Batman, Cole, and Jinx. She also has her furless baby girl, Addy, who has her heart!