Meet Our Doctors
Thomas R. Pytel, DVM
Growing up in Detroit, Michigan Dr. Thomas Pytel always knew he wanted to do something to combine his love of nature with his interest in animal science. He was fortunate enough to attend Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine with his brother Dr. Mark Pytel (owner of Meadowbrook Animal Clinic) where both graduated in 1986. Immediately after graduating Dr. Pytel worked in mixed and companion animal practices throughout Michigan and Illinois. In 1995, with a loan from a friend, he established Pytel Veterinary Clinic in the Goodrich Plaza in Goodrich. In 2001 in response to a growing clientele the practice moved to the current location.
Dr. Pytel believes that continuing education is an important part of his life as a veterinarian. He finds it crucial to keep informed on the best “Standards of Veterinary Medical Care”. Each year he attends the North American Veterinary Conference in Orlando, Florida. The advances in veterinary surgery, medicine, practice management and the human-animal bond are the framework of this informative conference. Dr. Pytel feels it is most challenging to integrate what is learned here into the practice.
Dr. Pytel has enjoyed being a part of his clients’ lives over the years and appreciates pet owners allowing him into their families. This, and being trusted in the care of their animals, is the most rewarding part of this wonderful profession. Dr. Pytel lives in Clarkston with his wife Anne, daughters Rachel and Samantha, dogs Maggie and Buddy and cats Cookie and Simba. In his spare time he enjoys fly fishing, martial arts and playing guitar.
Brian R. Covert, DVM
Dr. Brian Covert has been practicing veterinary medicine since graduating in 2001 from Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Prior to that, he spent 7 years working on the influenza vaccine and several other biological products for Parke-Davis Pharmaceuticals. It was his employment with Parke-Davis that rekindled his interest in Veterinary Medicine and motivated him to return to school in pursuit of his veterinary degree.
In 2007, while providing relief veterinary services for Pytel Veterinary Clinic, Dr. Covert signed on as a full-time veterinarian. The exceptional staff, clientele, and management of the clinic helped make it an easy decision for him. Dr. Covert continues to enjoy his responsibilities of both surgery and outpatient medicine in this setting. Dr. Covert finds much satisfaction in working with the various rescue groups serviced by Pytel Veterinary Clinic as well. He also helps out at the local animal shelter and additionally is the primary caregiver for the Oakland County police dogs.
When not at work, Dr. Covert enjoys running, outdoor activities, and spending time with his two very active boys.
Jeffrey J. Fortna, DVM
Dr. Jeff Fortna is a 2000 graduate of Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine. A life-long Michigan resident, he joined the staff of Pytel Veterinary Clinic in July 2011. He has extensive experience in small animal practice, shelter medicine, and education, and Dr. Jeff enjoys working with clients and companion animals alike. His clinical interests include ophthalmology, dermatology, spay-neuter surgical techniques, zoonotic diseases, and general medicine and surgery. Dr. Jeff takes great pride in a thorough assessment of every animal he sees, and he recognizes how special every pet is to its owner. He seeks to implement a practical, individualized approach to meet the therapeutic needs of each animal and that of the animal’s caregiver. In his personal time, Dr. Jeff is active in his church, loves to run, and enjoys traveling.