Heart's Ease was started by Dr. Courtney Bennett, DVM after she relocated to Louisville in 2012 to join her KY native significant other, visual artist Mark Traughber. Prior to joining the Louisville community, she practiced in her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA after graduating from North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine in 2004. She had the pleasure of working along side many talented veterinarians at several wonderful small animal practices prior to her career shift. Those years provided a strong foundation for her geriatric and end of life focused care here in Kentuckiana.
Dr. Bennett's time in PA helped to build her foundation not only through practicing skilled veterinary medicine, she also helped care for her terminially ill mother, Dora. After graduation, Dr. Bennett moved home to be with her mom, who suffered from Huntington's Disease. She was able to help care for her over the next 5 years, including the 1 and 1/2 years that she was in hospice care (over a year longer than the doctor's expected). Through her mother's difficult battle and her role as a care giver, Dr. Bennett's continued interest in palliative care and supportive therapy grew.
(For information on Huntington's disease: http://www.hdsa.org)
Over the years, Dr. Bennett has said good bye to many amazing animal companions. Most recently, Shroomie (the most amazing 20 year old cat, her absolute soul kitty) and Piggy (an 18 year old silly, happy Pug who snuck into her heart and home) passed peacefully in the comfort of their home.
Personal love and loss, human and animal, have laid the foundation for what has become Heart's Ease.
Dr. Bennett is a proud memeber of the International Assoiciation of Hospice and Palliative Care (IAAHPC) and the International Veterinary Association of Pain Management (IVAPM). She has been involved locally with Hosparus, Hildegard House and is a board member of the KY Chapter of the Huntington's Disease Society of America.
In 2017, Dr. Bennett's life forever changed again with the amazing birth of her son, Leslie. That same year Heart's Ease excitedly welcomed the addition of Dr. Nathaniel Cook who added incredible talent and additional compassion to the Heart's Ease family for over 2 and a half years.
A note from Dr. Bennett...
"Having a special bond with an animal companion is such a wonderful gift because we can share a friendship that is like no other. As a geriatric and hospice care veterinarian, it is important to me that I help people during the difficult times when our animal friends truly need us the most. I believe that we should live life to its fullest and then help make the end of life as comfortable and peaceful as possible. Although it can be an uncomfortable topic to discuss, the process of aging and dying does not have to be a painful or frightening experience for our animal companions or us. We can honor and celebrate their life journeys as they transition from this world by providing comfort, support, and love."
Cori Hills, Hospice Care Coordinator
Cori, orginally from St. Augustine, Fl, has lived in Louisville since 2009. She has a BA in Fine Art from the University of Louisville, for she has always had a passion for the arts. Another great passion since childhood has been her love of animals. Cori has worked with animals for over 15 years and has had quite the menagerie of her own pets throughout her life. She shares her home with two little mixed breed dogs and three cats- all of whom are rescues that she loves dearly. Having known such love our little family members offer, Cori has also known the pain and loneliness of grief in their absence. She genuinely wants to help as many families as possible through such difficult times by ensuring they get the help they need. She will be the kind voice on the other end of the phone that will understandingly walk you through any and all questions you may have. Cori is an invaluable member of our team and genuinely cares for each and every animal's best well being.
A Note from Cori...
"I am grateful to be an advocate for Dr. Bennett's mission of caring
beyond a cure by providing a higher quality of life for your beloved pets
in life's last stages."
Esteemed Colleagues in Veterinary Geriatric & Hospice Care
Bridge Veterinary Services, Dr. Shea Cox
Comfort at Home, Dr. Keith Tillman
Compassionate Veterinary Hospice, Dr. Amir Shanan
Sage Veterinary Services, Dr. Cheryl Thorpe
Solace Veterinary Services, Dr. Karen Randall
Whole Animal Veterinary Geriatrics & Hospice Services, Dr. Katherine Goldberg
Mockingbird Veterinary Housecalls Dr. Jen Douthwaite