Founders Veterinary Clinic - Los Angeles Holistic Veterinarian
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Meet Our Doctors

Dr. Mizuho Zempo DVM

My childhood dream to become a veterinarian got off to a good start after I graduated from Cal Poly Pomona in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science. Next, I was accepted to Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine. After a move to Indiana and another four years of study, I finally realized my dream on graduation day 2001.

Dr. Mizuho Zempo
Lisa Scarsi
Dr. Zempo, taking a break in the garden behind the clinic.

Being a native of California, I first worked at Founders Veterinary Clinic while I was an undergraduate student attending Cal Poly Pomona. I enjoyed the friendly teamwork atmosphere and appreciated the high standards of veterinary care demanded by a very dedicated staff. Secretly, I had hopes of returning one day to continue my veterinary education under the guidance of my mentor, Dr. Terifaj. Fortunately, Dr. Terifaj had the same wish and invited me back as her associate in 2001.

During my tenure at Founders Veterinary Clinic, I have pursued my special interest in surgery and developed my surgical skills. I now proudly manage all our surgical cases as head surgeon. Being responsible for all surgical patients allows me to focus in on what I find most rewarding in veterinary practice.

In my time away from practice, I enjoy riding my road bike and attending yoga classes. And naturally I love to spend time with my family—Amos and Maggie Mae, my two dogs, and Kage and Chibi, my two cats.

Dr. Paula Terifaj DVM

I began my veterinary career in the late 1970’s while curled upon a sofa one summer reading the adventures of James Herriot—a small town veterinarian who wrote about his courageous endeavors in his best selling books: All Creatures Great and Small and All Creatures Wise and Wonderful. Herriot has remained my secret mentor ever since. Determined to follow in his noble footsteps, I enrolled at Cal Poly Pomona and later graduated from the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis, California in 1986. After graduation, I happily returned to my hometown of Yorba Linda and two years later in 1988 (with the financial help of my parents and dreams of building a state of the art veterinary facility) I opened the doors of Founders Veterinary Clinic in the nearby city of Brea.

Dr. Terifaj with her beloved Woody.
Dr. Terifaj with her beloved Woody.

Starting my own practice allowed me the professional freedom I needed to develop my knowledge and skill in the discipline of natural health care also referred to as holistic medicine. Holistic health care recognizes the important role of diet and nutrition, demands the cautious use of drugs and enjoys the knowledgeable practice of prescribing medicinal plants, herbs and key supplements to treat disease.

With a growing public interest in holistic health care for both people and pets, I soon became recognized and appreciated for offering my patients alternatives to routine medical protocols and standard drug treatments. Using a more integrative approach to health care has offered my patients better treatment outcomes.  I firmly believe that all doctors (human and veterinary) need to appreciate not only the progress made by modern science but also respect the wisdom found in Mother Nature’s medicine cabinet and the value of eating whole foods!

After enjoying twenty rewarding years of teaching dog owners how to play an active role in their dog’s health care, I felt the need to branch out and share this vital information with other dog owners. So, in 2007 I set out to become an author/teacher and began a new career in writing. My goal has been to quickly teach busy dog owners everything they need to know about three crucial health topics: vaccines, nutrition, and skin allergies. Each of these three topics are taught in lessons that can be read in about 30 minutesgiving real meaning to the title of my writing project: 30 Minute Vet Consult. I also chronicle my writings in a blog called DOG-Breath.

Also known for my outspoken stand against Breed Specific Legislation, I have organized a grassroots movement against restrictive breed polices by city government and insurance companies called In my limited spare time, I delight in the joyful companionship of my beloved dogs, Rosie, Brad Pit, and Rover, who continue to inspire me!