Meet Dr. Bernie

Our Cast of Characters

Meet Dr. Bernie

 Dr. Bernadette Aleksey, (please call her Dr. Bernie), graduated magna cum laude from Tufts School of Veterinary Medicine in 2003. She is a member of the veterinary honor society, PHI ZETA and was a recipient of the Valerie Bates Humanitarian Award. Prior to becoming a veterinarian, she was a practicing Enrolled Actuary and an Associate of the Society of Actuaries for over 13 years jetting around presenting retirement projections to multi-billion dollar conglomerates.

Dr. Bernie's passion for learning continues. She has completed over 200 hours of instruction, successfully passed a two-day IVAS examination, 40 hours of internship, a grueling 14-page case study in order to become a certified veterinary acupuncturist (CVA). She has recently earned the Graduate Diploma of Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine, (GDVCHM) after 480 hours of instruction, multiple case studies, and publishing papers for the College of Integrative Veterinary Therapies (CIVT). Dr. Bernie treats the whole patient by integrating Chinese Herbal Therapy, Chinese Acupuncture, and Laser Therapy with traditional western Veterinary Medicine on an individual patient basis.


Dr. Bernie recently earned her Certification in Veterinary Manual Manipulation (CVMM) from the Intergrative Veterinary Medical Institute, The training consisted of 2 sessions that took place online plus 3 five-day sessions at the spacious IVMI campus in Ocala, Florida. This 128-hour CVMM program, 40 hours are dedicated to intensive learning in hands-on wet labs. Her degree allows her to perform hands-on treatments on her patients and adds another specialty skillset to treat the whole pet's health.


So, her alphabet soup of veterinary specialties on her business card is

                   Bernadette Aleksey, DVM, CVA, GDVCHM, CVMMP.


Dr. Bernie is still welcoming new clients. She performs acupuncture and laser therapy on felines, canines, and pocket pets in Middlesex County.

Dr. Bernie’s most memorable experience from veterinary school was looking forward to palpating dairy cows in the middle of winter after trudging through a quarter mile of waist deep snow! To date, the most unusual pet treated was a rooster for a prolapsed cloaca!

Dr. Bernie is married to her soul-mate Tom Ceniglio and have two vivacious and gorgeous teenagers. She enjoys traveling and then being home with her family and  her pets: Macy (Boxer mix), Jayde, Taz, Mercie, Charlie & Aries (Cats), Geo &, Gertie (Oberhasli Goats), Captain Tuttle (Russian Tortoise) .​


Suzanne Banks, Practice Manager, Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT)

Sue graduated from Becker College with an Associates of Science Degree in Veterinary Technology. In 2006 she was recertified in veterinary technology through the AVMA. Sue is a mother of 2 very rambunctious boys. They spend a lot of time participating in TaeKwonDo and soccer. In the summer, they can always be found at the Waterford Speed bowl. Sue met Dr. Bernie in Orlando, FL during a veterinary conference.

Mikaela Lemieux, Senior Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT)

Mikaela graduated as a veterinary technician from Middlesex Community College in the spring of 2018. Ever since she was little she remember being extremely interested in biology, medicine, and of course, animals! Her interest in the sciences and human-animal bond led her directly into the veterinary field. Some hobbies include dolls (she worked restoring them for 7 years), special effects makeup, and digital art. Mikaela also spent 3 years as a volunteer for a cat shelter and take special interest in homeless animals.
At the end of the day she loves to spend time with her 3 cats (Stanley, Kit, and Miscuit) and her bunny, Shakespeare! 


Wendy Abrams, Client Liaison and Certified Veterinary Assistant


Wendy completed her Veterinary Assistant training at Middlesex Community College in 2012.  Prior to pursuing her interest in the Veterinary field, Wendy managed the Creative Department at Ogilvy & Mather in New York City. Wendy holds a BA in Sociology from Goucher College.  As a caring and committed Client Liaison and Veterinary Assistant, Wendy enjoys working with clients and their “adorable pets” in an environment focused on providing exceptional care and state of the art integrative medicine. Outside of work she can be found baking, canoeing, scuba diving and playing with her spirited Goldendoodle named Gracie.


Kate Simshauer, Certified Veterinary Assistant.  

Kate came to East Haddam 12 years ago from New York.  At that time she began working as a Realtor in the Shoreline area.  Animals have always been Kate’s first love though and the transition to the Veterinary field was only natural. She couldn’t be happier for the opportunity to build a career in the health and wellness of animals with the help of such experienced professionals like Dr. Bernie and the rest of the staff at Adorable Pets. When she’s not at the clinic Kate enjoys hiking, reading, and spending time with family which includes two much-loved pets.


Kate Foley, Certified Veterinary Technician.


As a teenager, Kate saw the powerful relationships between humans and animals while working as a Guiding Eyes’ for the Blind volunteer. In 2018, she graduated from Middlesex Community College with a degree in Veterinary Technology, became a Certified Veterinary Technician. Earlier she earned a degree in Cell Biology from Wesleyan University which has shown to be a valuable resource to draw upon working in the field of veterinary medicine.
Kate is excited to be a member of the Adorable Pets Veterinary Center team utilizing integrative
medicine helping to increase and enhance the connection between clients and their pets.
Outside of work, Kate’s favorite things to do are reading, hiking, and most importantly spending
time with her animals; two black labs, Lilly and Hailee, and a rescue kitty named Tabitha.



Heather Trotochaud, Veterinary Assistant

Heather completed the Veterinary Assistant Program at Middlesex Community College in 2012. After four years she decided to try another profession with animals to gain extra skills and went to Connecticut K-9 Education Center in 2016 and completed the grooming course. She worked at New Inn Kennels for four years as a groomer as well as taking some veterinary technician classes at Northwestern Connecticut Community College. She wanted to come back to the animal science profession and came to work at Adorable Pets Veterinary Center. In her spare time Heather enjoys going hiking, spending time with her family, going out with friends,  and of course spending time with her dog Benjamin. 

Amber Canzoni, Client Liaison

Amber received her bachelors of science in zoology from SUNY Oswego in Oswego NY in 2010. She also received her associates of science in zoo animal husbandry from Santa Fe College in Gainesville, FL in 2010. She has been involved with animals for over 18 years and in the veterinary world for 8 years. Amber has a passion for the exotic species and a love of all things sloth! She currently is the proud fur mom of two cats, Elvis and Poof, two snakes, a kenyan sand boa named Pearl and a ball python named Monty and most recently a tank full of balloon mollies and a guppy.

Maddi Lemieux


After graduating high school and beginning my college career I found it difficult to find what works for me. Now, having settled into the goal of working in the veterinary field and becoming a veterinary technician, I am proud to be working at Adorable Pets. In my opinion, a house isn't a home without our furry friends. That's why I have 2 cats of my own, Biscuit and Adelaide. I am also very passionate about aquatics and have several community aquariums with a variety of fish.

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  • Acupuncture
    Behavioral Consults

    Chinese Herbs

    Hospice Care

    House Calls
    Laser Therapy

  • Manual Manipulation
    Nutritional Consults
    Preventative Care
    Second Opinions




1721 Saybrook Road
Haddam, CT 06438


Tel:  860-554-5588

Fax: 860-554-5582