Our Specialty Services

Veterinary Allergy & Dermatology

Our Services - Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists

Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists offers full-service in veterinary dermatology, which specializes in allergy, infectious, and auto-immune diseases of the skin and ear.  Dr. Nicole Eckholm is the only board certified veterinary dermatologist in San Francisco, Marin, Sonoma, Napa, and Mendocino counties.

What is a board certified veterinary dermatologist?

The American College of Veterinary Dermatology (AVCD) is a specialty organization accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) that oversees postgraduate training in veterinary dermatology.  A veterinary dermatologist is a veterinarian that has completed 4 years of veterinary school and is then accepted into a residency program.  During the residency program, which is typically 2-3 years, the resident receives advanced training in diseases of the skin and ears.  In order to receive board certification the resident must complete the residency training program, as well as an original research project, publish in a scientific journal, and successfully complete the certification examination. Currently there are about three hundred ACVD board certified veterinary dermatologists in the world.

Our Services - Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists

Golden Gate Veterinary Dermatology is a referral-based practice that specializes in complex medical conditions involving the skin, hair, ears, and nails. Allergy is the most commonly treated condition which comprises approximately 70% of cases seen. Thirty percent of cases involve infectious and auto-immune diseases. Our services provide treatment for pets suffering from obscure, hard to manage, and often times very complicated ailments of the skin and ears that are beyond the scope of the general practitioner.

Services include intra-dermal skin allergy testing, serum allergy testing, skin biopsy, cryo-surgery, and video otoscopy. The most prominent products include prescription medications, topical products, specialized diets, and immunotherapy. Board-certified training and experience to aid and assist in the treatment of animals suffering from a myriad of wide-ranging dermatological concerns.

“My allergy-challenged Springer is now doing very well, and I owe his improvement to Dr. Eckholm. Her Vet Tech, Kathie, is just like Dr. Eckholm and she too is a joy to work with. Save yourself a lot of time and frustration and contact Dr. Eckholm at Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists for your pet’s Dermatology needs! I cannot recommend her highly enough.

~Myrna R.

Surgical Services

Our Services - Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists

Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists offers outpatient veterinary surgical procedures for a wide range of conditions in dogs and cats, with an emphasis on Orthopedic Knee Reconstruction and Surgical Oncology.  Dr. Farese is the only Surgical Oncologist recognized by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in the Bay Area.

What is a Veterinary Surgeon?

Advanced Training

A veterinary surgeon has undergone additional training after veterinary school in order to become a specialist. This training consists of a minimum of a 1-year internship followed by a 3-year residency program that meets guidelines established by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS).

During the residency there are specific training and caseload requirements that must be met. In addition to these requirements, applicants must perform research that is published in a scientific journal and then pass a rigorous examination.

Specialists are called a “Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons” or a “board-certified surgeon.”

A Fellow or Founding Fellow, Surgical Oncology is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) who has obtained additional training and experience in the multidisciplinary approach to the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of cancer patients, and who devotes a major portion of his or her professional effort toward these activities and to cancer research

“Dr Farese was patient, kind, and knowledgable. He answered all of our questions and went above and beyond in terms of making us feel comfortable about the procedure and the alternatives.  The surgery went very well and we are happy with the results. I would highly recommend him.”

~James Dittmar

Oncology Services

Our Services - Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists

Starting in August 2023, Golden Gates Veterinary Specialists proudly introduces our new oncology services. Our veterinary oncologist, Dr. Ruppel, will conduct a comprehensive evaluation to create a personalized treatment plan, utilizing a variety of cutting-edge modalities such as chemotherapy, cryotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, or a customized combination tailored to address the unique needs of your beloved pet.

What is a veterinary oncologist?

A veterinary oncologist is a specialized veterinarian who focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and management of cancer in animals, particularly in pets like dogs and cats. These professionals undergo extensive training to understand the intricacies of various cancers, their progression, and the most effective treatment approaches. Veterinary oncologists work closely with pet owners to provide tailored treatment plans that consider both the specific type of cancer and the individual needs of the animal. Their expertise spans a wide range of techniques, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and surgical interventions. With their deep understanding of oncology and a compassionate approach, veterinary oncologists strive to enhance the quality of life for pets facing the challenges of cancer.


Internal Medicine

Our Services - Golden Gate Veterinary Specialists

Starting in Decembeer 2023, Golden Gates Veterinary Specialists is excited to welcome our new specialty of Veterinary Internal Medicine. After finishing veterinary school, Dr. Caitlyn Glick complete a rotating internship in small animal medicine and surgery and an internal medicine internship in Rochester, New York. This was followed by an internal medicine residency at a private practice on Long Island, New York. 

What is a veterinary internist?

A Veterinary Internal Medicine Specialist, often referred to as a veterinary internist, is a veterinarian who has completed additional, intensive training in understanding the intricacies of various complex internal diseases that afflict animals. Their expertise isn’t just general; it’s honed after years of extra education, including a multi-year residency program following veterinary school, where they learn to diagnose and manage conditions such as endocrine diseases like diabetes, immune system disorders, gastrointestinal problems, and blood diseases.

Unlike a standard vet who handles routine check-ups and basic health issues, these specialists dive into medical mysteries that are often too intricate for a general practice. They’re the Sherlock Holmes of the veterinary world, piecing together clues from advanced diagnostic tools like ultrasound, MRI, or endoscopy. Think of them when a cat has a puzzling condition causing it to lose weight rapidly, or a dog is suffering from seizures that aren’t controlled by standard treatments.

They also collaborate with other veterinary experts in cardiology, oncology, or neurology for comprehensive care. For example, if a pet is diagnosed with heart failure, a veterinary internist might work alongside a veterinary cardiologist to tailor a treatment plan specific to that pet’s needs. These specialists are board-certified, meaning they’ve passed rigorous exams by institutions like the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, setting them apart as leaders in their field.

Their role is pivotal, especially for aging pets, animals with multiple diseases, or when a precise diagnosis eludes the scope of general veterinary practice. They provide a beacon of hope for pet owners looking for answers to their beloved animals’ persistent or severe health problems, guiding them through the complex journey of treatment and management with a level of detail and expertise only a specialist can offer.