Care Team

Your pet’s care is our highest responsibility. We dedicate ourselves to helping your pet become comfortable with our staff, and ensuring you get the assistance and information you need to maintain your pet’s well-being. Most of our staff split their time between our two locations in Madison.

Dr. Jesse Sondel, DVM, Owner

Born and raised in Madison, Dr. Sondel is a 2003 graduate of the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. While he takes great pride in the care he provides his patients, his favorite part about being a vet is the relationship he has developed with his clients over the years.

Dr. Sondel’s veterinary clinic has received Best of Madison awards for many years. His reproductive expertise draws owners from across the Midwest, and his anesthesia-free orthopedic evaluations, recognized by the Orthopedic Foundation of Animals, attract breeders from around the country.

Dr. Sondel lives with his wife, Emilie, children, Jordan and Evan, and his mastiff “Bob” and Boston Terrier “Gary”. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, biking, coaching hockey and enjoying the great outdoors.

Emilie, Co-owner

Emilie has been on the “Sondel Team” since marrying Dr. Sondel in 2003, one month after he became a veterinarian. She has a Master’s in counseling psychology and has been a child & family psychotherapist since 2005. Emilie is passionate about staff and clinic wellness at SFVC. She understands that working in the veterinary field is stressful and demanding so she focuses on ways to promote a positive and healthy environment for both staff and clients. In addition to her work at SFVC, Emilie works with Dr. Sondel to promote a healthy community through volunteering, donating, and sponsorship of various community groups and events serving animals and children.

In her down time, Emilie enjoys spending time with Dr. Sondel and their children, Jordan and Evan, as well as their dogs, Bob and Gary. She also LOVES anything to do with water, playing games, traveling, and being outside.

Dr. Elana Frankenthal

DVM & Medical Director

Dr. Elana Frankenthal was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI and moved to Denver, CO to pursue her undergraduate and Master of Business Administration (MBA) degrees. During her MBA program, she realized life was too short to live with regrets and decided it was worth pursuing her lifelong dream of becoming a veterinarian. Shortly after, she landed back in Wisconsin and graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine in 2017 with high honors.

Dr. Frankenthal feels strongly about taking advantage of the many continuing education opportunities available keeping her up to date on the latest medical advances. She has special interests in internal medicine and dermatology and enjoys integrative medicine such as acupuncture. She earned her veterinary acupuncture certification through the Chi Institute in 2016. Dr. Frankenthal will take the time to listen to your concerns and discuss options with you so that you can come up with a plan for care together.

Dr. Frankenthal lives with her husband Max and their young daughter Sydney. Their furry companions include Silas (English Springer Spaniel) and Aspen (domestic short hair cat). In her spare time, Dr. Frankenthal enjoys spending time outside with her family (hiking, boating, swimming), Pure Barre, and cooking.

Dr. Chelsea Mohney, DVM

A native of Southwest Michigan, Dr. Mohney received a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science from Michigan State University. She is a 2018 graduate of St. George’s University and spent the last year of her veterinary training at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. It was then that she fell in love with the Madison area and is happy to call it her home. Dr. Mohney enjoys treating all breeds and is interested in helping her patients achieve and maintain excellent health so that they enjoy an optimal relationship with their families. She has special interests in soft tissue surgery, dentistry, and dermatology.

Growing up on a blueberry farm, Dr. Mohney spent much of her childhood raising chickens, caring for various barnyard animals and riding her quarter horse, Glory. She now shares her residence with her playful cat Panda whom she rescued from a shelter while in Grenada.

In her free time, Dr. Mohney enjoys traveling, hiking, going to her family’s house on Lake Michigan, eating sushi, and spending time with family and friends.

Dr. Kara Wallisch, DVM

Dr. Wallisch grew up in Green Bay, WI and moved down to Madison to attend school at the UW. She graduated in 2015 from the UW School of Veterinary Medicine. Prior to working at Sondel Family Vet, she worked in general practice and shelter medicine, where she broadened her skills in surgery, medicine, and disease management. Along with surgery, she enjoys ultrasound and diagnostic imaging, and received additional training in performing echocardiograms.

At home, Dr. Wallisch lives with her husband, two young sons, and a black Labrador named Lilah. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, water activities on the lake, and family movie nights.

Dr. Hannah Mortensen, DVM

Raised in Madison, Dr. Hannah Mortensen (Dr. Mort) attended UW-River Falls for her Animal Science degree. She then returned to her hometown to finish out school at UW-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine and graduated in 2019. Before starting at Sondel Family Vet, Dr. Mort was an associate at a small clinic just outside of the Madison area.

While she enjoys working with multiple species and breeds, hunting dogs have a place close to her heart. She owns two Large Munsterlanders, Dieter and Saiga, with her partner, Isaac. Keeping these animals healthy and able to do the things they love with their owner is one of the best parts of work as a vet.

You can find Dr. Mort, when not at work, working in her garden, outside, spending time with her pups and Isaac, reading, and crafting.

Sara, Practice Manager

Sara has been part of the Sondel team since 2017, joining us with several years of experience in the doggy daycare and boarding industries, as well as a bachelors degree in psychology and communication from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. Sara enjoys spending time with friends and family, being outdoors, and live music. Her beloved fur family includes a tuxedo cat, “Malik”, and a chihuahua mix, “Bubbles”.

Brian, Lead CVT/Hospital Manager

Brian received his certified veterinary technician degree from MATC in 2005. He has 5 years of emergency experience, over 5 years of CAT scan and ultrasound experience, multiple years of working with a laparoscopic surgeon, and has volunteered at the Milwaukee zoo in surgeries on a tiger and a lion. He also has additional ultrasound training to perform abdominal and echocardiograms. Brian has a son, Jameson, and daughter, Lyla. Other members of his family include his fiancé, Ashley, and her daughter, Isabella, as well as two dogs and a hedgehog. Aside from keeping up with everyone at home, Brian also enjoys fishing, hunting, coaching soccer, ATV's, remodeling his house, and working on his cars.

Lora, CVT

Lora has been a Certified Veterinary Technician since graduating the veterinary technician progam at Madison College in 2006, where soon after, she began her long-lasting career with Dr. Sondel. Growing up in Sun Prairie, she remembers always wanting to be a vet tech, and you could often find her at Pet Express (the local Main Street pet store) with the owner Frank, who did wildlife rehab and really fueled her love for animals. Lora went on to work as an assistant in high school and college at the veterinary clinic in town. As with most veterinary professionals, she now has quite the menagerie of pets at home including Sampson the three-legged English Mastiff, Ellie the deaf Pit Bull mix, Stanley the French Bulldog, and three interesting, curly kitties; Olive, Philip, and Brimley. Lora enjoys traveling and hiking around the world, knitting, exploring local farmer’s markets, and going to breweries and wineries with her husband. She's mother to a cute-as-a button little girl, Izzy, and an equally as adorably-cute baby boy, Duncan. Lora’s favorite thing about working at SFVC is seeking out snuggle or affection opportunities with patients, as well as animal dental care and helping to make sure owners understand how to best care for their pets!

Amy, CVT

Amy has been around animals all her life, starting by growing up on a dairy farm. Her first job was at her hometown veterinary clinic when she was 16, so it felt natural for her to become a CVT and in 2003, she received her license. Amy, her husband, and their two young children live on a small farm in Monticello raising all kinds of animals - including goats, chickens, pigs, horses, and dogs! In her spare time, Amy and her family show their animals at various events.

Sarah, CVT

Sarah is a Certified Veterinary Technician who graduated from Minnesota School of Business - Plymouth in 2010. She worked for a small veterinary clinic in Minnesota before moving to Madison in 2013, where she laid roots with her family. She started volunteering shortly after at Dane County Humane Society in Medical Services. Sarah enjoys her work as a CVT here at Sondel Family Veterinary Clinic, helping all our patients feel better!

Sarah's pet family includes two grey short hair cats, Luke and Logan, whom she adopted from the humane society in Minnesota. They keep her very busy along with her young daughter Kailey. She enjoys spending time exploring new parks around Madison and reading.

Amanda, Client Care Specialist

Amanda comes to us with over 5 years of experience working at various Veterinary clinics here in Wisconsin. She has earned her career diploma as a Veterinary Assistant from Ashworth College in 2018. She is a lover of all animals but is very particular to our feline friends as she has 5 cats sharing her home along with her husband Andrew and son Taven. Amanda also enjoys learning new techniques and information in animal science and adovcation.
Some of her hobbies include crafting, seeing live shows/concerts, traveling, hiking, playing board games and reading a good book.

Heather, Client Care Specialist

Growing up in Cambridge, Heather has always had a passion for animals of all shapes and sizes, and she is constantly immersing herself in all things animal related. In high school she was a member of the FFA community and showed cattle at Jefferson County Fair. Previously having worked for a pet resort, Heather now has her own side gig pet sitting! Recently, she has started to pursue her B.S. in Animal Science and hopes to find a career she is drawn to. Heather spends her time outside of work with her partner, Nick, in their crazy household of three cats. She is also looking to add a pup to the family sometime in the near future! In her free time, you can find Heather visiting her family in Cambridge, enjoying the outdoors, and scrolling through her endless Facebook feed of pet videos.

Katrina, Client Care Specialist

Katrina is a Madison native who joined the SFVC team in July 2022. She is a longtime lover of all animals but has a fondness for dogs particularly. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her fiancé, Alex, and her dogs, Olive, a Portuguese Water Dog, and Isaac, a Standard Poodle. She loves training her dogs to do fun tricks and taking classes with them. She is always hungry for knowledge about all things pets and loves learning about dog breeds and their historical purpose.
Katrina also has a passion for senior and special needs pets and one day hopes to foster them.

Lindsey, Client Care Specialist & Veterinary Assistant

Growing up Lindsey always had a fondness for animals, and could be found at the barn most weekends as a child. After high school she got a degree in graphic design from MATC and worked in high end fashion for several years before switching gears, and deciding to go back to school to become a CVT. Lindsey and her partner James, share their home with two dogs; Pippin and Erza, four cats; Link, Renji, Obito, and Poe, in addition to the occasional foster pet (or two.) In her off hours, Lindsey can usually be found studying, riding her horse, doing some sort of DIY project, or gardening.

Marla, Client Care Specialist

Marla has been working in the animal industry for over four years now including three years in an emergency vet clinic. She has always had a love for animals and still loves to learn new things about animals. Aside from work Marla enjoys going on hikes with her Partner Nick, and her two dogs Iris and Ava. She also enjoys working on her vehicles and spending time with friends and family.

Molly, Client Care Specialist

Molly grew up in Madison and joined the SFVC team in May 2021. She is obsessed with all animals, however dogs are her favorite. In 2014 she rescued her dog Pearl, a pit-boxer mix who is now 13 years old. Molly graduated from the University of Iowa in 2011 with a degree in elementary education, and worked in many arenas of teaching and childcare until 2020 when she decided to step into more administrative roles. In her spare time, she likes to hang out with friends and family, binge a good true crime podcast, and/or be crafty.

Mel, Veterinary Assistant

Mel has been an animal lover for as long as she can remember. A couple years after receiving her BA in graphic design, she decided it wasn't the right fit. Switching gears, she now is happily working as one of our vet assistants. She currently has 2 kitty sons, Peter and Charlie. In her free time, she likes to take walks, play video games, and hang with friends. Her favorite breed is all of them, because it's too hard to choose. She looks forward to learning more about dogs and cats everyday!

Kaylee, Veterinary Assistant

Kaylee is currently a 4th year student at the University of Wisconsin Madison majoring in Animal Sciences, and is hoping to attend Veterinary School next year after graduating. Kaylee has loved animals for as long as she can remember, and loved working with them during high school and college.
This year, Kaylee is the president of the pre-veterinary association at UW and a member of Tri Delta. She also works part time as a research assistant in the Nutritional Sciences department at UW. She is currently finishing up a project with a double mutant mouse colony!
Kaylee has a chinchilla named Remington as well as 3 dogs at home - but loves dogs and cats of all sizes, especially large breeds!

Rachel, Veterinary Assistant

Rachel grew up in Pardeeville, WI and moved to Sun Prairie after college. She graduated from Winona State University with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health: Epidemiology and a minor in Global Studies. After working in pet boarding and grooming for 2 years, she realized that animal care was her true passion. She has always been dedicated to improving the lives for animals and loves spending as much time as possible with them, no matter the species.
In her free time, she enjoys spending every second with her Australian Shepherd/Blue Heeler Mix, Juno. Whether it is exploring the woods, meeting new fur friends at the dog park, or swimming in the lake, if they are together, she is always having a good time.