Laguna Niguel Veterinarian Receives National Award from Pets Best

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Latest My Vet's the Best contest honors veterinarian Dr. Pat Echolds.

Dr. Pat Echolds wins the My Vet's the Best award from Pets Best.
We are so excited that we won the contest, and we’re very grateful for all of our wonderful clients who voted.

Pets Best Insurance Services, LLC, a leading U.S. pet insurance agency based in Boise, Idaho, announced today that veterinarian Dr. Pat Echolds has been voted the most recent winner of the agency’s My Vet’s the Best contest. The nationwide contest honors veterinarians for their outstanding service.

The latest round of the contest brought in 7,600 votes cast by pet owners across the U.S. through the Pets Best website,, and the company’s Facebook page.

“The thousands of votes cast in this contest demonstrate how many pet owners appreciate the efforts of dedicated veterinarians,” said Dr. Jack Stephens, founder and director of Pets Best. “Dr. Echolds embodies the hard work and passion that are essential to providing the highest quality of veterinary care, and Pets Best is pleased to see so many people support his work.”

Dr. Echolds, who practices at the Rancho Niguel Animal Hospital in Laguna Niguel, California, won the contest after receiving 4,054 online votes. He was among hundreds of veterinarians nominated for the seasonal award. The contest’s other five finalists each received a significant number of votes. Runners-up Dr.'s Frank and Mindi Metzler from 2222 Veterinary Clinic in Austin, Texas, finished with 2,191 votes.

As this round’s winner, Dr. Echolds received $1,000 from Pets Best to treat animals in need. Dr. Echolds and the team at the Rancho Niguel Animal Hospital plan to use the $1,000 cash prize to help sick and injured animals at the Mission Viejo Animal Shelter. The pet owner who nominated Dr. Echolds also received $200 from Pets Best.

Dr. Echolds is known for his dedication to providing ethical service and personalized care. His clinic is run with what he calls a “good, old-fashioned family doctor practice” feel to it, which may have contributed to the thousands of votes he received.

“By treating our clients and their pets like family, people can see we truly care for our patients and their owners,” said Dr. Echolds. “We are so excited that we won the contest, and we’re very grateful for all of our wonderful clients who voted.”

Graduating with honors in 2007 from Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California, he was part of the first graduating class at the veterinary school. When he’s not at the clinic caring for animals, he enjoys spending time outdoors in the California sunshine.

In 2010, Pets Best became the nation’s first pet insurance company to develop a contest aimed at recognizing outstanding veterinarians. Each year, hundreds of veterinarians receive nominations from grateful pet owners. While voting for the contest’s seasonal winners is open to the public through the Pets Best website and Facebook page, each year’s grand prize winner is selected by an internal review panel comprised of respected veterinarians.

For more information about the My Vet’s the Best contest, visit

About Pets Best Insurance Services, LLC
Dr. Jack L. Stephens, founder and director of Pets Best, founded pet insurance in the U.S. in 1981 with a mission to end euthanasia when pet owners couldn’t afford veterinary treatment. Dr. Stephens went on to present the first U.S. pet insurance policy to famous television dog Lassie. Pets Best provides coverage for dogs and cats. Dr. Stephens leads the Pets Best team with his passion for quality pet care and his expert veterinary knowledge. He is always available to answer questions regarding veterinary medicine, pet health and pet insurance. The Pets Best team is a group of pet lovers who strive to deliver quality customer service and value. Visit for more information.

Pet insurance coverage offered and administered by Pets Best Insurance Services, LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company, a Delaware insurance company. Independence American Insurance Company is a member of The IHC Group, an organization of insurance carriers and marketing and administrative affiliates that has been providing life, health, disability, medical stop-loss and specialty insurance solutions to groups and individuals for over 30 years. For information on The IHC Group, visit: Additional insurance services administered by Pets Best Insurance Services, LLC are underwritten by Prime Insurance Company. Some existing business is underwritten by Aetna Insurance Company of Connecticut. Each insurer has sole financial responsibility for its own products.

Pets Best is a proud member of the North America Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA).

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Carrie Tiemann
Pets Best Insurance
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Scott Kerbs
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