Meet Our Doctors
The primary goal of Pend Oreille Veterinary Service is to be a leader in the veterinary profession providing our clients with the highest standard of care and customer service. Our 103 combined years of service and knowledge in the veterinary profession gives you the peace of mind that your pet is receiving the best care in the industry.
Visit our Picture Gallery to view photos of our caring, knowledgeable staff. We care for not only your pet but for you as if you were family; because to us you are!
Dr. Bruce Vogel, Owning Partner
Bruce graduated from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in 1991 and joined Pend Oreille Veterinary Service in 1995. Bruce enjoys working with both cats and dogs with special interests in acupuncture and treating exotic animals. When not at the clinic he enjoys spending time outdoors. Skiing, hiking and canoeing are just a few of the activities that Bruce enjoys in his spare time.
Dr. Christina Ponsness, Owning Partner
Dr. Ponsness moved to Sandpoint in 2008, joined the Pend Oreille Veterinary Service team as an associate in 2013 and became an owner in 2014. Originally from Renton, Washington, Dr Ponsness completed her Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology degree at Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA. She then received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University in Pullman (Go Cougs!!). She enjoys working closely with clients to meet the needs of their dogs and cats. Her special interests include surgery- both orthopedic and soft tissue, oncology and specialty care of the geriatric family pet. When she is not at the clinic, Chrissy and her family enjoy most things outdoors; such as boating, fishing, hiking, camping, skiing and running.
Dr. Laurel Murdock
Dr. Laurel Murdock joined the Pend Oreille Veterinary Service team in June 2018. She graduated from Colorado State University and happily relocated to Sandpoint to be closer to family and enjoy the beauty of the inland Northwest. Her interests include cardiology, anesthesia, soft tissue surgery and the exciting variety of small animal general practice. In her spare time, Dr. Murdock enjoys running, hiking, and spending time outdoors with her two beloved Golden Retrievers.
Dr. Jenifer Ness
Dr. Jenifer Ness graduated with her DVM from Washington State University in 2016. She was raised in North Dakota and spent many wonderful years assisting her father with his self owned business of breeding and training field bred hunting dogs. Her interests include, surgery, internal medicine and preventive care. In her free time Dr. Ness enjoys gardening, snowboarding, cooking and hiking with her husband and two dogs.
Dr. Christine Smart, Owning Partner
Hi, my name is Dr. Christine Smart. I am a veterinarian and owner at Pend Oreille Veterinary Service. I joined POVS in 2005 and became an owner/partner in 2008.
I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and decided I wanted to be a veterinarian as soon as I knew what the word meant. I grew up with pet dogs, fish and birds, but I always wanted a cat and a horse, and nearly any other pet animal that crossed my path.
In high school I ran Cross Country and track. I was a proud member of Swarthmore College’s nationally ranked Women’s Cross Country team and played club rugby while earning a bachelor degree in Biology. I attended the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine and graduated in 1997. My veterinary career path started at Castle Shannon Animal Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA and then Causeway Animal Hospital in Metairie, Louisiana.
Four days before Hurricane Katrina devastated the greater New Orleans area, my husband Matt and I left NOLA with our three dogs and six cats to move to Sandpoint, Idaho. I was 5 months pregnant with our first child. Our family currently includes my husband Matt (we have been married since 2000), son Avery and daughter Indigo. We share our home with two Australian shepherd dogs, five cats, a guinea pig, eleven chickens and eighteen horses. My husband and I also own a trail riding business called Mountain Horse Adventures that operates from our home in spring and fall and at Schweitzer Mountain Resort in the summer. I am a licensed trail guide in my spare time. In addition to trail riding, I enjoy running, yoga, fitness, hiking, snowboarding, lake time, reading, live music, and cooking.
At Pend Oreille Veterinary Service, my special interests are internal medicine, ultrasound and endoscopy. I also have find endocrinology, oncology, hematology, gastroenterology and feline medicine fascinating. I enjoy soft tissue surgery, managing complex medical cases and dermatology. Most especially, I enjoy celebrating the human animal bond that our pets bring to our lives. I value team building on our staff and strive to create a culture of wellness and excellence within our team. I am so proud of our team at Pend Oreille Veterinary Service.
Dr. Charles Ashton
Chuck joined Pend Oreille Veterinary Service after graduating from Colorado State University in 1988. He was raised in Southern Idaho and Northern Utah. While enjoying all aspects of the veterinary practice, his special areas of interest are small animal orthopedics and the unique needs of sporting dogs. Outside of veterinary medicine and surgery, Chuck actively enjoys most kinds of outdoor activities.
Dr. Jerry Lewis
Jerry Lewis was one of the founders of Pend Oreille Veterinary Service, establishing the clinic in June of 1964. Though mostly retired, Dr Lewis remains involved in veterinary medicine and operations at POVS. He will be the first to tell you how important it is to provide excellent customer service and can be quoted saying “Service, it’s in our name”. Hopefully you will get the opportunity to interact with Jerry either in the clinic or during his many activities around Sandpoint.