Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital

Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital is an accredited AAHA full-service veterinary medical facility, located in East Tawas, MI. The professional and courteous staff at Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital seeks to provide the best possible medical care, surgical care and dental care for their highly-valued patients. We are committed to promoting responsible pet ownership, preventative health care and health-related educational opportunities for our clients. Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital strives to offer excellence in veterinary care to East Tawas, MI and surrounding areas. Please take a moment to contact us today, to learn more about our veterinary practice and to find out more information about how Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital can serve the needs of you and your cherished pet. Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital belongs to The American Animal Hospital Association, a select group of practices that are committed to meeting the highest standards in veterinary medicine. AAHA hospitals pass a stringent evaluation of over 900 standards covering patient care, client service and medical protocols. By attaining accreditation, Sunrise Side Veterinary Hospital is demonstrating its dedication to offering the best care to its patients and clients."

Our Mission
Our mission is to help people in a courteous and understanding manner to maintain their pet's quality of life through preventive medicine and current diagnostic and treatment techniques;

And also to provide our clients with access to leading edge products and services and authoritative educational content focusing on enhancing the human animal bond.

Vet check-up with small dog
  • Mon-Fri: 9:00am - 5:00pm
  • Sat: 9:00am - 12:00pm
  • Sun: Closed
  • After Hours Emergency: Call (989) 362-5711 and leave a message.
  • Dr. J.J. King, DVM


    Dr. J. J. King is a native of Oscoda, Michigan and a 2002 graduate of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University. He started working at the clinic in May 2002. He and his wife, Angie, have twin boys, a daughter and 2 dogs. Dr. King and his family enjoy outdoor activities including hiking, camping, hunting, and water sports. Dr King purchased the clinic in July of 2012.

    Years in Practice:
    Jan 01, 2002
    Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Sandy Nelkie

    Front Desk Manager

    Sandy is a native of the Tawas Area. She started working at Falker Veterinary Care Center in the spring of 2000. She was originally hired as a Pet Care Specialist in the Kennel area. Now, you will see Sandy at the front desk. She has thorough knowledge of the Hill's Science Diet products and is always happy to answer nutrition questions. Sandy and her husband have four beautiful children including a set of twins. Her family has 2 dogs and 2 cats.

  • Judy Righetti

    Veterinary Assistant

    Judy graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in Environmental Biology and Botany. Judy has had a lifelong passion and interest in animals which lead her to the veterinary field in 1979. She accepted a position as a Veterinary Technician at Riverview Animal Hospital where she specialized is surgery nursing, lab testing, and client education. Judy became a member of our team in 2004. In addition to working with the animals Judy enjoys using her lab skills and educating our clients so each may have a long and healthy relationship with their pets. She and her husband, Ricco, have 3 adult children and live with 3  cats.  Judy holds a special place in her heart for horses and Golden Retrievers.
  • Elizabeth Knill

    Veterinary Assistant

    Elizabeth started here as an intern in May 2013 through Baker College Veterinary Technician program. She graduated in June 2013 receiving an Associates of Applied Science degree. Elizabeth’s Passion for animals started at a young age, while growing up on a farm she raised and trained sheep for 4-H.Her hobbies include cosmetology, outdoor recreation, and fish-keeping. She is also the proud parent of 5 dogs and 3 cats!

  • Sami Jo Westenbarger

    Veterinary Assistant / Pet Care Specialist

    Sami came to us from North Carolina where she graduated high school.  She loves animals and has several of her own.  These pets include pit bulls and cats.  She hopes to further her career in the veterinary field.

  • Lori Snyder

    Client Care Specialist

    Lori has been with us since July of 2012.  She has been married for 36 years and has 2 children.  She has been working in the veterinary field since 1995.  She has 3 cats and 1 dog.  She also enjoys reading and gardening.

  • Penny McClanahan

    Client Care Specialist