VCA Sacramento Veterinary Referral Center


  • Hospital Manager

    Heidi Thornton

    Heidi started her animal care career at the Placer SPCA in 2001, where she worked on the animal care team as well as in the behavior department. She then joined Carmichael Animal Hospital in 2004 as a receptionist. Carmichael Animal Hospital merged with VCA Sacramento Animal Medical Group in 2009, where Heidi stayed until moving to Sacramento Veterinary Referral Center in 2010 as the Client Service Manager. When away from SVRC, Heidi enjoys training her dogs, photography, and riding her off the tack thoroughbred named Cat. 

  • Referral Coordinator

    Lacey Dillard

     Lacey started her veterinary career as a customer service representative in 2011 after years in the world of insurance and client relations. She worked her way up to Oncology Client Liaison in 2012, and added Veterinary Assistant to her job duties in 2013. She takes pride in creating personal connections with patients, clients, and fellow veterinary professionals. When away from work, she enjoys spending time outdoors, going on adventures with her family and friends, and spending time with her animals.

    Lacey is the dedicated Referral Coordinator for our Medical & Radiation Oncology services.

  • Referral Coordinator

    Lydia Gallegos

    Lydia has been with VCA Sacramento Veterinary Referral center since November of 2006. She started out as a receptionist, working evening and emergency hours and recently moved onto our Referral Services team. She thoroughly enjoys her work assisting referring doctors, new clients and pets alike. When away from work, Lydia stays busy with her family, and her furry little beast, Penny.

    Lydia is the dedicated Referral Coordinator for our Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Radiology, Animal Rehabilitation, and Emergency/Critical Care services.

  • Referral Coordinator

    Nancy Knee

    Nancy started working at Sacramento Veterinary Surgical Services part time in November 1994 as a veterinary assistant and stayed on as SVSS grew and transitioned into VCA Sacramento Veterinary Referral Center in 2005. She moved to client service and became responsible for the hospitalized patients charges, ensuring pets were ready for discharge and a variety of other hospital duties. She then became surgery liaison in 2007 and added neurology in 2012. Nancy loves helping clients and referring vets have a positive experience with SVRC and the surgery and neurology departments in particular. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, dogs, tortoise and pond full of fish. Hobbies include antiquing and thrift store hunting and supporting our military as a “Soldiers Angel”. 

    Nancy is the dedicated Referral Coordinator for our Surgery & Neurology Services.

  • Marketing Director

    Emily Cunnington
    School: George Fox University, B.A.

    Emily’s experience in the veterinary field began in 2011 when she started working at VCA Loomis Basin Veterinary Clinic while home from college for the summer. She attended George Fox University in Oregon, where she studied Sociology and Business Marketing. Upon returning to California, she joined our team as the Outreach Coordinator. Emily oversees relationships with referring hospitals and veterinarians. If you ever have any questions or concerns regarding referrals or would like us to send you any materials, please contact her directly at (916) 361-5210. While not at work, Emily can be found spending time with friends, family, and her two cats and dog, Tucker.


General Practice

We have over 600 animal hospitals in 41 states and 4 Canadian provinces that are staffed by more than 3,000 fully-qualified, dedicated and compassionate veterinarians, with more than 400 being board-certified specialists.

The nationwide VCA family of general practice hospitals give your pet the very best in medical care, providing a full range of general medical and surgical services as well as specialized treatments such as wellness, spay/neuter, advanced diagnostic services (MRI/CT Scan), internal medicine, oncology, ophthalmology, dermatology, cardiology, neurology, boarding, and grooming. Services may vary by location.

Our family of pet hospitals stands out by delivering the greatest resources in order provide the highest quality care available for your pets. By maintaining the highest standards of pet health care available anywhere, we emphasize prevention as well as healing. We provide continuing education programs to our doctors and staff and promote the open exchange of professional knowledge and expertise. And finally, we have established a consistent program of procedures and techniques, proven to be the most effective in keeping pets healthy.

Find a VCA General Care Animal Hospital near you:


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Emergency Care

We are located at 9801 Old Winery Place in Sacramento. Our hospital is open 24 hours a day every day to help care for your emergency needs. Our emergency fee is $135. If you are planning to come in on emergency, please call (916)362-3111 so that we are ready for you.

If your pet has swallowed a medication or toxic substance, you can call Animal Poison Control Center at 1-888-426-4435 for the most up to date information and immediate assistance. The cost of the service is $65.