Dr. Zarah Hedge
Vice President, Chief Medical Officer
As chief medical officer, Dr. Zarah Hedge oversees a team 15+ veterinarians who provide lifesaving specialized surgeries, progressive treatments and long-term care and rehabilitation for animal patients in the care of San Diego Humane Society. The Medical Department offers medical examinations, vaccinations, microchipping, diagnostic testing and dental procedures. The program is also equipped to treat animals with allergies, heart problems, basic orthopedic conditions and other injuries. San Diego Humane Society also performs more than 17,000 spay and neuter procedures each year, many at low or no cost. The organization’s Pilar & Chuck Bahde Center for Shelter Medicine includes a pharmacy, evaluation and treatment areas, isolation ward, surgery suite, dental suite and recovery room.
Certified veterinarians in the field of shelter medicine remain quite limited. Zarah is one of fewer than 30 veterinarians in the world who hold the distinction of being certified in shelter medicine by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. She brings more than a decade of experience and is a graduate of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, where she was also an assistant professor after graduating.
Most recently, Zarah worked as hospital director at WesternU Spay/Neuter Center in Van Nuys. She also continues to serve as a reserve field veterinarian for Rural Area Veterinary Services, a program of The Fund for Animals. Four weeks per year, she travels to provide direct veterinary care to Native American reservations, including spay/neuter surgeries and preventive services. Zarah lives in Ocean Beach with her boyfriend, lovable golden retriever named Pez and five cats (two of which are tripods), Nica, Nora, Lilian, Mr. Cuddles and Sunny.