Surgical Group for Animals is located in the Animal Emergency Medical Center.


The rapid and dramatic advances in Veterinary Medicine make it difficult for the general practitioner to keep current with the techniques and instruments needed to manage some of today's complex surgical problems. The board certified veterinary surgeon possesses the training, equipment, and experience to handle these difficult cases.


By working together, your Veterinarian and the specialist become a team to provide your animal with the best possible care.


Shock Wave Therapy for Dogs


This new form of therapy offers arthritis pain relief for dogs using sound waves.


At SGFA we have been performing ESWT since 2008 with a success rate of 90%. Our cases have included: bicipital and Achilles tendonitis, DJD of the hips and elbows, and cervical and lumbo-sacral pain. To date all cases have received only one treatment which has been performed on an outpatient basis.

TPO - Triple Pelvic Osteotomy


The TPO is a procedure utilized to correct the subluxation seen with hip dysplasia


By definition, 3 cuts are made in the animal's pelvis which allows for rotation of the hemipelvis. Then, by applying a plate with a predetermined angle and screws to the pelvis, the new angle for the joint is maintained.

About Shock Wave Therapy for dogs

Shock waves are high-energy focused sound waves generated outside the body that can be focused at improvement in a majority of animals treated, but this treatment is still in the experimental stage, and results are not always consistent.


Small animal practitioners interviewed in 2003 reported that approximately 70 percent of their patients demonstrated a remarkable response to treatment. Another 15 percent exhibited improvement that was not as significant as the first group. Some of these may improve further with a second treatment. About 15 percent show no improvement. Shoulders, backs, and hips seemed to respond best to ESWT, while treatment of knee injuries had the least response.

TPLO - Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy


You've just been told by your veterinarian that your dog is limping on his / her rear leg because he / she has a torn anterior cruciate ligament in the knee [stifle]. He has recommended surgery. What are your options?


As to the injury [torn ligament], it is the same injury seen in human athletes ["football knee"]. There are two ligaments inside the dog's knee which cross, thus the name "cruciate" ligaments. These ligaments provide stability for the knee when the dog walks. If the anterior cruciate tears [by far the most common knee injury], the shin bone moves forward when the dog walks. This causes pain, and can damage the cartilage [meniscus] inside the knee. Over the years many techniques have been developed and used to stabilize the stifle.

While this procedure was first developed for use in large dogs [over 50 pounds], new equipment is now available for small dogs and cats [even as small as 5 pounds]. In summary, the advantages of this procedure over previous conventional methods is:

• Quicker recovery, full weight bearing usually within 2 weeks.

• No need for a postoperative dressings.

• Greater than a 90% chance of return to preinjury function [household pet, working and show].

Our friend Pudge Elvis surfing after bilateral TPLOs!

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)


We offer HBOT to our patients and referral clients, with the acceptance of trusted and established pet insurance organizations, and deliver consistently positive results in challenging and difficult cases.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is capable of safely delivering 100% pure oxygen to many tissues in the body due to higher atmospheric pressure inside the chamber. HBOT is a useful addition to other standard therapies for many types of illnesses in a variety of clinical situations and is most often given in combination with other modes of therapy.


Generally hyperbaric oxygen therapy results in reduction in swelling, stimulation of new blood vessel formation into the healing/swollen tissue, a reduction in pressure caused by head or spinal cord injuries, improved would healing, and improved infection control.  Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can be of great help to veterinary patients by speeding up the healing process and may reduce or eliminate the need for more invasive procedures such as surgery.



Madison Leeds / Surgery
Head Veterinary Assistant / Supervisor

Madison Leeds Surgery Department

Madison Leeds graduated from Redondo Union High School in Southern California in June 2009, with an interest in Biology and Animal Science.


Shortly after graduation, she began her pre-veterinary courses at West Los Angeles College. She completed her freshman year with honors. Shortly after completion, she transferred to Penn Foster Career School in which she will complete Registered Veterinary Technician school, allowing her to sit for her RVT board exam. In the summer between her freshman and sophomore year she joined Surgical Group for Animals full time which allowed her the opportunity to further her skills, knowledge and abilities in veterinary medicine, while working with patients, clients and staff. She hopes to complete RVT school, obtain an RVT license, and apply to Vet school.


Madison is the proud parent of her Pitbull, Popeye, and her domestic short haired cat, Rascal. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, pets, and playing the piano.



Kristen Deignan, B.S.

Veterinary Assistant

Kristen Deignan graduated from Torrance High School in June of 2010. She then attended Cal Poly Pomona and majored in Biotechnology and minored in Chemistry. She was an active member of the social justice for the Asian pacific islander student center. Kristen graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in June 2015.


She then began working part time for Surgical Group for Animals in October 2016 as a surgery assistant, and since then has expanded to full time in preparation to plan to apply to Veterinary School.

Prior to working for SGFA, Kristen did research and work for multiple Biotech research companies.


In her free time, Kristen has a special interest in watching movies, she loves to play basketball and go to Disneyland, and any other free time is dedicated to Veterinary School application studies.



Cindy Cherness, B.S.
Veterinary Assistant


Cindy graduated from South High School in Torrance, CA in 2012 with a special interest for a career in veterinary medicine. Upon graduating high school, she attended Bucknell University in Pennsylvania where she then graduated with a B.S. in animal behavior in 2016.  She originally joined Surgical Group for Animals in 2017 as a volunteer to gain valuable experience while applying to veterinary school, and has since come on as a full-time employee during the application process.


Prior to joining SGFA, Cindy did an internship at Wild Wonders in San Diego, CA where she conducted tours of the facility and executed education outreach for the facility. After this internship, she obtained an intern position at the carnivore department at the Denver Zoo where she worked closely in training the zoo animals and shadowing underneath the zookeepers in animal husbandry.


In her free time, Cindy enjoys playing volleyball, reading, playing the piano, hiking and spending time with her 2-year-old German Shepherd Luna.







TELEPHONE: 310.325.3000

FAX: 310.257.0900






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