Paws and Perches Animal Hospital is proud to serve Lake Wales, FL and surrounding areas. We are dedicated to providing the highest level of veterinary medicine along with friendly, compassionate service.

We believe in treating every patient as if they were our own pet, and giving them the same loving attention and care. We are a group of highly trained, experienced animal lovers who are devoted to giving our patients the best care possible.

If you have any questions about how we can care for your pet, please don’t hesitate to call us at (863) 676-6176. Thank you!

Dr. Ashley Lab (Owner)

Dr. Ashley Lab is the owner and practicing veterinarian at Paws and Perches Animal Hospital. She is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine and received her Bachelor of Science degree in biology at Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois. Being a vet and moving to Florida were two things that she always knew she wanted. Dr. Lab had an early start in this career, starting to volunteer at the age of 13 at the practice where her family took their pets. Dr. Jeaneyl Hazlett, was the owner of that practice and gave her the first opportunity to learn and observe. The two still keep in touch! However, it wasn’t veterinary medicine that brought Dr. Lab to Florida, it was Disney. One of her most exciting experiences was completing both an internship and preceptorship at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Veterinary Hospital, working with diplomats of the American College of Zoological Medicine.

In 2012, Dr. Lab found a place to call home in Lake Wales. It reminds her of the small town feel that she grew up in. She strives for Paws and Perches Animal Hospital to keep that personal touch that one expects in a small town. It is important to her that she knows her clients and patients by name. She also enjoys taking the time to educate both clients and staff. Explaining diagnostics, diseases, and treatment options is important, in helping clients make informed decisions.

While Dr. Lab can be found at the hospital 6 days per week, she still makes plenty of time for family and fun. Her daughter, Aubrey, is a bundle of energy, entertainment, and laughter. They enjoy going to Disney and seeking out the thrill rides- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Slinky Dog Dash, and Tron are a few of their favorites. The thrill-seeking doesn’t end there; Dr. Lab is also an amateur flowrider (surf simulator), competing on the US FLOWTour! The staff says, don’t get her talking about Aubrey, Disney, food, or flowriding; or she’ll never stop!

Tina (Veterinary Assistant)

Tina is an original member of the Paws and Perches Animal Hospital team, after working for Dr. Swango (now retired) since July of 2002. Growing up in Fort Lauderdale, Tina was inspired by her Aunt and wanted to be a pediatric nurse. Her career path did not stray far from that dream. Tina can always be heard fawning over every cute puppy or kitten that comes through the door. As a veterinary technician, Tina excels in her nursing skills every day. In her nearly 20 years in this profession, she has become an invaluable asset to the practice. Her colleagues appreciate her reliability, punctuality, and positive attitude. But, don’t let your guard down on this puppy snuggling, kind-hearted woman; she is also a black belt in Ju Jitsu! Aside from training, Tina enjoys spending time with her family, especially watching her son thrive and mature.

Keahau (Receptionist/Veterinary Assistant)

Keahau joined the Paws and Perches team in March 2015. She has worked in all facets of the hospital; including receptionist, kennel attendant, and veterinary technician. As a child, she aspired to be a veterinarian. She began working for Dr. Swango (now retired) in 2000. Keahau considers Dr. Swango to one of the greatest influences on her life. She has come and gone from the practice over the years, but always comes back home. Most recently, she took a leave of absence in 2018 after a brain aneurysm. It was the scariest moment of her life, but also her greatest accomplishment to have made a full recovery. Since returning, she continues to work hard at being a versatile team member and always ready, willing, and capable of helping wherever she is needed. When she is not at work, you can find Keahau sipping a sweet tea and working in her yard; all while keeping tabs on her two adult daughters…her greatest pride and joy!

Stefanie (Receptionist)

Stefanie joined our team in April of 2021. Stefanie is one of our receptionists. Her love for animals started as a child. She always had to stop and pet every animal she saw which is a trait she still carries to this day. Stefanie graduated from Clemson University with a degree in Animal Veterinary Science in 2009. Go Tigers! She loves to read books, work out, cook, and spend time with family and friends (and their fur babies, of course)!

April (Receptionist/Veterinary Assistant)

April has been with Paws and Perches since November 2021. She has worked as a technician assistant and receptionist with us. April moved to Florida with her husband and son in 2016 to be closer to family. She has since had the addition of two cats (Weasley and Betelgeuse) to her family. April loves to spend time at Bok Tower, an amusement park, gardening, or at the beach. She loves to read biographies and fantasy books, especially Harry Potter. She almost always has an emergency book with her! Prior to joining us, she worked for 20 years in a preschool.

Syd (Veterinary Assistant)

Syd, a recent transplant from Twin Falls, ID, is the newest addition to the Paws and Perches team. They are enjoying the Florida weather and are excited to explore the area and get to know the community. Though new here, working with animals is nothing new for Syd. They have worked in several different roles with various animal shelters, veterinary clinics, and conservation organizations, including The Brandeis Institute of Equestrian Therapy, The Peregrine Fun/World Center for Birds of Prey, and Cat Tales Wildlife Center. Syd also has their hands full at home with their own fur babies and hopes to one day open a cat café and rescue. Some of Syd’s other passions include theatre, costume and jewelry design, cuisine, community activism, and playing games of any kind.