Your Veterinary Team
We have been providing quality, compassionate pet care since 2001. Meet the doctors, technicians and client care staff that will make your experience with us special.
Our Core Values
We seek the very best individuals to care for you and your pet
Being a people person is just as important as our love and dedication to pets.
We support team member education, excellence, and happiness
Providing excellent care and service is an ongoing collaborative effort supported by continuing education and a fun, supportive work environment.
We invest in technology and only use quality medications to treat your pets
Beyond routine well care, at Summerlin your pet benefits from digital x-ray, digital dental x-ray, ultrasound, and an on-site laboratory for faster, accurate, comprehensive results. We purchase products your pets need only from industry leaders with a proven track record of safety and research.
We choose to be held to the highest standards of veterinary medicine
We are proud to say we are an accredited hospital. Nearly 900 standards of veterinary medicine have been met and evaluated to achieve this prestigious accolade. Click here to learn more about AAHA (the American Animal Hospital Association).
John Ankenbrandt, DVM
Growing up in Decatur Illinois, Dr. John has always known he was going to be a veterinarian. He spent his childhood begging his parents to let him keep every stray dog and cat he ran across! After finishing high school, he went to the University of Missouri where he earned a bachelor’s degree in biology then graduated from the veterinary school in 1989.
While in veterinary school, he met his wife, Dr. Cheryl Ankenbrandt. They moved to Florida the day after graduation, settling first in Spring Hill which is an hour north of Tampa. In 1999, they sold their practice in Spring Hill and moved to Fort Myers to be closer to family. In December of 2001, they opened Summerlin Animal Hospital. Three years later, the practice was thriving and the size of the clinic had doubled.
In his free time, Dr. John can usually be found on his boat. He enjoys fishing, and spending time with his wife and two children.
Karen Rasmussen, DVM
Dr. Karen graduated from the University of Maryland in 1991 and Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in 1995. She practiced in an equine and small animal practices in the Maryland area before moving to a small animal/equine practice in Weeki Wachee, FL.
Dr. Karen moved to Ft. Myers in 1998 and has been with Summerlin since 2007. She enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine and has special interests in internal medicine and geriatric medicine.
Technicians and Assistants
Sandra was born in Bogota, Colombia and relocated to the Miami area with her family as a young child. In 2000, she started working at an animal hospital as a grooming assistant, eventually training to become a veterinary technician. Sandra joined Summerlin Animal Hospital in December 2010. Her hobbies include photography and drawing.
Ariel was born and raised on the barrier islands of Southwest Florida. She has been a member of the Summerlin Animal Hospital team since 2007; she started as an intern when she was in high school. She is the proud mom of a chiweenie named Chopper, three cats named Ginger, Kirra and Leah, and two Leopard Geckos named Drogo and Daenerys. Ariel loves spending her free time at the beach, hiking/biking and reading. Occasionally Ariel also works as a professional mermaid, swimming at large and small events around Florida.
Francesca was born in Pennsylvania but relocated to Florida with her family when she was five. She has a background in banking, customer service, and has recently earned her degree in Veterinary Technology. Her love of animals and longtime dream to work with them led to a career change. Her dog Xena and her cat Bandit are best friends. In her spare time she enjoys the beach and spending time with friends and family.
Sarah was born in Massachusetts but has spent most of her life in Fort Myers. She has worked in the veterinary field since high school and has recently graduated with her Associates Degree in Veterinary Technology. She has owned cats, dogs, rabbits and homing pigeons and has always known she wanted to work with animals. Sarah has two Chihuahua mixes named Batman and Bandit.
Chelsea was raised in Redondo Beach, California and moved to Southwest Florida about 2 1/2 years ago with her husband and 2 children. She started in the veterinary field when she was just 17 years old and brings 6 years of veterinary experience with her. She has a Red Heeler, an English Bulldog, 2 cats and a bearded dragon. In her free time she enjoys scuba diving, boating, and gardening.
Sandra moved from Ohio to Florida in 2010 and has years of experience working in veterinary medicine. She holds a veterinary technology degree from the University of Cincinnati and has two lab mixes named Mason and Mia.
Ashley was born and raised in Fort Myers. She has been an animal care giver her entire life, from dogs and cats to hamsters and bunnies. She enjoys taking care of her grandparents in Kentucky and hiking on trails with her dog Rosco. She loves spending time with family and friends and helping others with activities and projects.
Christina was born and raised in Dunmore, PA and moved to Florida in 2016 to attend FGCU. She earned her bachelor's degree in criminal justice but she has always had a passion for veterinary medicine. Christina joined our team in 2021 and is hoping to stay in the veterinary field long term. She has further educational goals that include becoming a certified technician. Christina has always had animals in her life; she currently has a hamster and her family dog Ella. In her spare time she enjoys going to the beach and spending time outside, going for hikes and taking care of her plants.
Professional Pet Grooming
Heather has lived in Florida for some time, having spent the last 6 years in Fort Myers. At one time she was a grooming salon manager is very excited to make Summerlin "her own". She considers working with our clients an amazing opportunity to offer the premium grooming experience she has always wanted to provide to her clients. Heather has two children, 3 dogs, 3 cats and 2 leopard geckos to round out her family.