Byron de la Navarre, DVM — Chief of Staff
Past-President, Assn. of Reptilian & Amphibian Veterinarians (ARAV)
Past-President, Chicago Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA)
Illinois State Liaison, Association of Avian Veterinarians (AAV)
Co-Director, Midwest Exotic Pet Seminars (MEPS)
Chairperson, Chicago Herpetologic Society's (CHS) Conservation & Research Committee
Member, Member Services Committee, American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)
Dr. Byron de la Navarre is Chief of Staff at Animal House of Chicago. He opened this practice in January 2003 doing much of the construction on his own with help from friends and family. He takes great pride in his work as well as in his practice of veterinary medicine.
His love of animals began as a young boy growing up outside New York City. He had his own pet sitting service as well as his own business "Fish-ician" setting up and maintaining Aquaria in various homes and businesses. He managed one of the largest privately owned pet stores in New York specializing in exotic pets. Dr. de la Navarre attended Cornell University as an undergraduate. There he did Honors Research in Captive Husbandry & Breeding of Perigrine Falcons at the Cornell Ornithology Laboratory. He also took part in a Master's Research project in Psittacine Nutrition. Dr. de la Navarre then went on to the Veterinary College at Cornell, receiving his DVM degree in 1990.
Jennifer Ivankovig, DVM
Dr. Jennifer Ivankovig ("Dr. Jenny") has been practicing veterinary medicine at Animal House of Chicago for the past six years. She grew up in LaPorte, Indiana and currently resides in Chicago. Dr. Jenny completed her undergraduate studies at Purdue University in 2000 and then went on to earn her DVM degree from the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2004. Prior to joining us, Dr. Jenny worked at a small animal practice in Wake Forest, North Carolina for nearly two years. Her medical interests include Exotics (small mammals and birds) as well as Feline Medicine.
In her free time, Dr. Jenny enjoys reading, baking and riding her bike. She has two cats (Oliver and Claude) and one bird, a Red Lored Amazon Parrot, named Leroy.
Ellen Boyd, DVM, PhD
Dr. Ellen Boyd went to veterinary school at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where she was able to focus on exotic animal medicine and wildlife. She completed an internship at the Audubon Zoo's Center for Research of Endangered Species in New Orleans and stayed for an two additional years as an associate veterinarian. She began her reproductive research with cranes and really began to love working with birds. Dr. Boyd continued working with migratory birds and earned a PhD degree in 2007 from the University of Washington in Seattle doing field work all over the West Coast and the Arctic Circle. Her dissertation focused on avian endocrinology and reproduction.
Before joining the Animal House of Chicago team in 2014, Dr. Boyd worked in shelter medicine at Paws Chicago and as a relief veterinarian at many animal hospitals in the greater Chicago area. Her main interests are exotic animal medicine, general surgery and shelter medicine. Dr. Boyd feels very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with animals as companions and in their natural habitats.