Our Veterinarians

Dr. Craig W. Sandler
Owner, Veterinarian
Dr. Craig Sandler’s passion for animal care stretches back as far as he can remember—he was only 12 years old when he first began volunteering in the veterinary field. By the time he was a teenager and witnessed his horse struggle through various health issues, he knew that he wanted to make a difference in the lives of animals and the people who cared for them. For Dr. Sandler, a career as a veterinarian was the natural choice!

Dr. Sandler is originally from the New York City suburbs, and came to Jacksonville for his first Associate’s job in 1987. He fell in love with the city and simply never left! Dr. Sandler founded Lakewood Animal Clinic in 1994, and has been serving the area’s pets and animal owners here ever since. He’s particularly fond of dermatology work and preventative medicine, and has a special place in his heart for holistic medicine after alternative therapies helped his own dog to live a happy, normal life.

Dr. Sandler and his wife, Natalie—herself an employee of Lakewood Animal Clinic!—have three children and share their home with a pair of loveable dogs and six cats. When he has spare time between work and family life, Dr. Sandler loves listening to music and attending the theatre, cheering on his favorite football teams, traveling, and hiking and camping in the great outdoors.
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    • Mary Hemeter KlahrMary Hemeter Klahr

      The office, staff, and dr. are wonderful. Very professional but friendly. A little pricey but excellent care for my Abby.

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    • Dana F.Dana F.

      I've been pleased with the service I've received here. My cats had not been to the vet since I moved to the Jacksonville area, since they are indoor cats... Read More

    • Patricia K.Patricia K.

      Excellent doctor and staff--I took my dog Patty in for weight issues, and she's now at her healthy weight; took her for teeth issues, and she now has... Read More

    • Lily ArtilesLily Artiles

      Love this place!!!

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    • Darryl SchmittDarryl Schmitt

      Dr. Sandler and his staff have always been great. Been taking our dog there for over five years.

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    • Rae AustinRae Austin

      Great environment, service, and staff. I am very pleased with Lakewood.

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    • Valerie LorbisValerie Lorbis

      Dr. Sandler and his staff are awesome! My corgi would probably disagree. He's a handful. Needs to be muzzled & sedated for the sake of everyone's safety and sanity.

      I came in for an appt., signed the usual sedation forms, but asked that they avoid using any if at all possible. They whisked him away to the back to complete his exam.

      I braced myself for the sounds of shrieking, overturned tables, an unmuzzled Cuzo-like corgi gone rogue. With the occasional barks from other canine visitors/boarding, it all seemed too quiet.
      About 20 mins later, my vet tech (Tammy, I think) returned to update me.
      "WE DID IT!"
      Blood work done, nails clipped, ears cleaned. There were patches of fur stuck to her cheeks... But the team left unscathed!

      That wasn't always the case with past visits. Mojo once had a stress-induced episode of canon butt. He was not scheduled for anal gland expression. In trying to hoist him up to an exam table, he not only pooped MY pants, but his writhing around resulted in aerial backsplash. On Dr. Sandler's pressed shirt. And face. His poker face is bar none, seriously.

      TLDR;
      Everyone here is incredibly caring, personable, dedicated, and PATIENT. Dr. Sandler addresses all your concerns/questions, explains treatment plans and options, provides referrals to behavioral issue gurus, and is never pushy or dogmatic (bah-dum-tss).
      If your companion has allergies, that's his thang, so definitely see him. Even if your furry, fuzzy angel isn't so much of an angel towards them, they all will treat him/her like one. & That means a lot to me. :)

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