Rachael Carpenter, DVM

Clinical Instructor, Anesthesiology

When did you join the college?


The best part of being faculty is …

Watching students get more comfortable with all aspects of anesthesia before they go into practice. I know everyone thinks their specialty is most important, but any clinical veterinarian will need some experience with sedation/anesthesia for diagnostics, procedures and surgeries. It's fun to see them become more confident over the three week rotation!

How would you capture the essence of your work in a newspaper headline?

"From hamsters to polar bears; she puts them to sleep - AND wakes them up again."

My hidden talent...

I can reschedule disrupted flights during travel and find a reasonable way home from most anywhere- I credit my Mom who was a flight supervisor for Eastern Airlines (back in the day)!

Words of encouragement to a current veterinary college student...

You know more than you think you do! And remember, no one expects you to know everything - you will just need to know where to go to find what you don't know. In practice, you can say to an owner, "I don't know that off the top of my head, but let me consult some references/colleagues and get back to you."

If I had a superpower, it would be...

Knowing when the anesthesia technicians are about to message me about a case, and just showing up right before they hit "send"...it's happened too many times to be a coincidence!

This excites me the most about the future of my industry...

Our future young colleagues! They are generally eager to learn, practical, hardworking and looking for ways to change the profession for the better.

A cause I'm most passionate about...

Improving anesthesia and analgesia care across the profession. Anesthesia is still one of owner's biggest fears about seeking care for their animals. Even without all the expensive bells and whistles that we have in a teaching hospital, anesthesia care in practice can be greatly improved by having trained staff that are closely monitoring anesthetized patients and alerting the supervising DVM to any problems so they can be quickly corrected.

Top of my bucket list...

Going back to Spain! I was an exchange student in high school, and would really love to go back. Now that travel is happening again after the pandemic, we need to figure out how to make it happen!

My favorite quote…

"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better." -Maya Angelou

How many pets/animals live at home?

We have a 9 yo orange cat named "Pickle," named by my then 4 yo after an orange kitten in a book called "The Little Kitten." That kitten was always getting into pickles, so they named it Pickle. We also have an 8 yo Russell Terrier, named Neville who was previously a therapy dog with VT Paws. During the Pandemic we adopted two bunnies, Louie and Magnolia from Bunny Lu Rescue in Waynesboro. Recently, we found a (literally) starving kitten by the side of the road, and took her in and named her Ollivander (Olive for short). We also have two horses, Reba and Crosby (that don't live at home).


Andrew Mann
Director of Communications and Marketing