Hello! Meet Our Team at Animal Medical Center of Traverse City
We are an energetic group with a passion to provide the highest level of medical and surgical care for your beloved pets. We look forward to the opportunity to meet you and your furry friends. We hope you will take a moment to get to know our team individually as you read our biographies below.
Margaret R. Schopp, DVM
Owner & Veterinarian
Dr. Maggie is a Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine graduate from the class of 1998. As of July 1, 2013 she assumed ownership of the Animal Medical Center of Traverse City. Following graduation from veterinary school, Dr. Maggie worked in a mixed equine and small animal practice for 5 years. In 2003 she moved to northern Michigan and has focused her attention on companion small animal medicine ever since. She has a strong interest in soft tissue surgery and dentistry. Dr. Maggie, her husband John, and their two children have been enjoying the unique lifestyle that the Traverse City community has to offer. Thank you for helping us in welcoming her to our practice.
Katie E. Zayaz, DVM
Dr. Katie Zayaz graduated from Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 2003. After graduation, she completed a small animal internship program near Wahsington, D.C. at the South Paws Referral Center. Following her internship Dr. Katie spent two years at the Veterinary Specialty Center, an emergency referral hospital outside of the Chicago area. She moved to Traverse City in 2007 to be closer to her family and became a member of our team. Dr. Katie and her husband Joe have two young children and are expecting their third child very soon. The Zayaz family share their home with a very tolerant cat. When her children allow her time, Dr. Katie loves reading and gardening.
Valerie K. Prettyman, DVM, MPH
Dr. Valerie Prettyman is a 2007 graduate of Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. After graduation she practiced veterinary emergency medicine at the Animal Emergency Hospital of Plainfield in the Grand Rapids area for two years. From there she transferred to the Veterinary Emergency Service in Madison Heights, Michigan. In 2009, Dr. Val received her Masters in Public Health from the University of Minnesota. She focused on Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response and has been a member of several CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) organizations. Dr. Val works closely with the local animal rescue group known as AC PAW. Over the years she has helped to educate AC PAW on vaccination protocols, the benefits of early spay/neuter, and evaluations of new animals admitted to the program. The Prettyman home is also an AC PAW foster home. Over 30 dogs have been fostered while in search of their forever homes. A veterinarian’s work is never done! Dr. Val and her husband, Adam, have lived in the Traverse City area since 2011. They enjoy many outdoor activities including running, snowshoeing, skiing, sailing, and hiking. The Prettymans share their home with several rescue pets: 3 dogs, 2 cats, and a small flock of chickens.
Thomas A. Mertaugh, DVM
Dr. Tom met Dr. Karen at Michigan State University’s Veterinary School. Sharing a love for animals, they married after graduation in 1981. After working in separate practices for a year, they opened the Animal Medical Center of Traverse City in 1982 where they worked and raised their two children in the Traverse City community. Outside of their medical expertise, Drs. Tom and Karen also have shared an interest in organic gardening. The resident goats, sheep, and chickens aid in supplying the wonderful “Organic Gold” compost that makes our flowers grow so beautifully.
Before her recent retirement, Dr. Karen worked with the Cherryland Humane Society and served on their board of directors for five years. In the past she has sponsored an animal neuter-a-thon to neuter the male dogs and cats at the shelter. She was honored with their “Volunteer of the Year” award in 2012.
Drs. Tom and Karen will be enjoying the winter and spring months out west visiting their children.
LuAnn has been a receptionist for the Animal Medical Center since 1997. Prior to moving to the Traverse City area she worked as a receptionist in the Saginaw area at the Sheets Veterinary Clinic for four years and Bridgeport Veterinary Clinic for seven years. With over twenty five years of devotion to the veterinary profession, LuAnn is still going strong. She has fulfilled her life long dream to serve clients and their pets in need. LuAnn and her husband, Scott, share their home with their two dogs. Outside of work she enjoys reading, watching movies, bowling, and is a loyal Detroit Tigers baseball fan.
Laura joined the team in May of 2005 after having over eight prior years experience at the Acme Veterinary Clinic as an animal technician. She assists with many of the medical and surgical procedures, treatments, recovery, and pain management in our practice. Laura enjoys spending her days with our clients’ furry friends. She was born and raised in Traverse City and feels extremely lucky to call this beautiful place her home. She has two wonderful daughters and they share their home with three dogs, a cat, and a horse. Laura’s strong love of animals started at the early age of seven when she began riding and showing Quarter Horses.
Veterinary Assistant & Receptionist
Renee joined the Animal Medical Center team in June 2008. Renee’s multitasking abilities allows her to perform any necessary receptionist and technical duties to keep our practice running smoothly. She has found her place in life working within our practice tending to the client and animal needs. Renee moved to Traverse City in January 1976 and worked for a year with the Cherryland Humane Society. She and her husband, Bruce, have always had animals as part of their family. They are currently sharing their home with two rescue dogs and a cat who was rescued with a broken leg that Dr. Tom repaired surgically. She recently adopted an American Bull Dog from the AC PAW Rescue Group. Renee enjoys riding motorcycles, gardening, reading, and spending time with her family and friends.
Kelli has been a Veterinary Technical Assistant of the Animal Medical Center since 2003. Most of her time is spent working in our laboratory running the necessary presurgical and medical tests on our patients. Kelli also assists the doctors in radiology, surgery and dental procedures. She was born in Lansing and raised in Suttons Bay. She now lives with her husband, Mike, and their two children. Their family also includes three dogs and a cat. Kelli loves spending time with her children and enjoys going to all of their school activities. She spends her free time baking, gardening, and camping any chance she can get!
License Veterinary Technician
Anna, an Empire Michigan resident, graduated from Michigan State University in 2006 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Veterinary Technology. After graduation she worked at a small animal practice in Kalamazoo. Anna has a strong interest in trauma care, dentistry, and anesthesia. Two years after her graduation Anna’s husband Nick joined the Air Force and they moved to Oklahoma. During the four years they lived there Anna worked with the Banfield Pet Hospital in the Oklahoma City area. The Taghons adopted a Foxhound mix and she has turned out to be a fantastic family pet. Their son Corben loves playing tug-o-war with her. Anna enjoys family time, photography, and baking in her free time.