About Our Doctors

All professionals at Southside Animal Hospital and Wellness Center, Inc. maintain the highest levels of accreditation and pursue ongoing education to stay abreast of the latest trends in the medical field. Read on to learn more about our staff's experience and training.

Dr. Karin Schmidt obtained her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Texas A&M University.  Upon relocating to Alaska, she first practiced veterinary medicine in Fairbanks for several years before moving to Anchorage and was actively involved in sled dog racing.  She organized veterinary services for the inaugural Yukon Quest and was head veterinarian for the Iditarod for three years.  Dr. Schmidt has completed several mid and long distance sled dog races with her own dog team, including the Copper Basin, Yukon Quest, and Iditarod.  She also served a term as vice president of the International Sled Dog Veterinary Medical Association.  In May of 1996, Dr. Schmidt and Dr. Ecklund opened Southside Animal Hospital and Wellness Center in south Anchorage.  Dr. Schmidt has completed the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society course and is a member of the American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture.  She enjoys caring for her patients from pediatrics to geriatrics, with special interest in orthopedic surgery.  When not taking care of her patients at Southside Animal Hospital, Dr. Schmidt enjoys taking care of her small farm and many pets, as well as hiking and snowshoeing with her dogs.

Dr. Dyan Ecklund received her Bachelor's in biology from Montana State University and went on to obtain her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 1986 from Colorado State University School of Veterinary Medicine.  Before moving to Anchorage in 1991, she practiced veterinary medicine in Sitka and Kodiak.  Dr. Ecklund, along with Dr. Schmidt, opened Southside Animal Hospital and Wellness Center in 1996 in south Anchorage.  She enjoys working with her patients from an early age and into their golden years.  Dr. Ecklund enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine from preventative care to diagnostics and surgery.  When not working, Dr. Ecklund can be found in the great Alaska outdoors hiking with her dogs.

Dr. Heather Branvold-Faber obtained her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Colorado State University.  In 2004, she earned her veterinary degree from Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.  Dr. Branvold has practiced small animal medicine in Idaho and Montana, as well as working for the US Fish & Wildlife Service performing black-footed ferret recovery in Colorado and Wyoming.  In 2012, Dr. Branvold joined our team at Southside Animal Hospital and Wellness Center.  She has a special interest in canine rehabilitation and has earned her certification as a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist from the Canine Rehabilitation Institute.  In her free time, Dr. Branvold enjoys hiking, camping, skiing, and skijoring with her husband, Scott, and their dogs.  They are all happy to call Alaska home