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Compassion-First family expands to 13

Veterinary network adds two New Jersey hospitals—one old, one new

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Compassion-First Pet Hospitals, a network formerly known as Veterinary Specialists of North America, has grown to 13 clinics with the opening of Cherry Hill Animal Hospital.

The general practice treated its first patient Tuesday in the Philadelphia suburb of Cherry Hill, N.J., and was preceded four days earlier by the company’s acquisition of Animal Health Care of Marlboro (AHC) in Englishtown, N.J.

Compassion-First is led by John Payne, a former president and CEO of Banfield Pet Hospital, one of the nation’s largest veterinary hospital networks.

“AHC is truly going to be the premier general hospital in New Jersey,” Payne said of 24-year-old Animal Health Care. “They have an established history of meeting the direct needs of pet owners and their patients.”

The former co-owners of AHC—husband and wife Steven Tepper, DVM, and Deborah Breitstein, DVM—manage the day-to-day operation and still practice.

Compassion-First’s purchase will improve AHC, Dr. Breitstein said.

“They will help grow our hospital by providing resources and access to new cutting-edge technologies,” she said.

Compassion-First hospitals are found in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. Among them are five Red Bank Veterinary Hospital locations.

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