All of our hospitals have COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Find your local BluePearl hospital for the details. 

Our Services

We focus exclusively on emergency treatment and advanced specialty veterinary care.  (For annual vaccines and wellness care, please see your primary care veterinarian.)

Types of Specialties & Services

Each BluePearl pet hospital is unique. Our South Hills hospital offers these specialties and services provided by skilled, compassionate and dedicated professionals.

Veterinary Social Work Services

A cat's paw rests on a person's open hand.Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center is proud to offer veterinary social work services for our clients. We value the close relationship you have with your pet and support the need for counseling after a loss or traumatic experience.

Lori Harbert has been a social worker for more than 15 years and has a strong background in the field. She is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) who specializes in mental health counseling, trauma-informed care, crisis counseling and grief and bereavement counseling. 

Sally Timko has been a veterinary social worker for Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty Emergency Care (PVSEC) and Blue Pearl since 2017. Sally has her Masters’ degree in social work and had worked in the Child Welfare System for 11 years. She has worked in high-stress situations with individuals who are experiencing difficulty with exposure to highly emotional environments. She has experience in navigating drug and alcohol, mental health, compassion fatigue, burnout, grief and loss, bereavement and domestic violence situations.

Social work services provided include:

  • Telephone/private support
  • Guidance in pet decision-making, including palliative care & euthanasia
  • Support group meetings
  • Referrals and resources
  • Information on pet loss
  • Compassion fatigue management

Our information hotline telephone number is 412.348.6515.

Our Pet Loss & Grief Support Group meets the second Saturday of each month from 10:30 a.m. to noon.  There is no fee for the group but reservations are required. Please email us at [email protected] to make a reservation, or to ask any questions you may have.