Fine Veterinary Care in Montrose, Colorado

Our Story


Morningstar has provided loving care to patients in the Uncompaghre Valley since 1976. Staffed by pet lovers like yourself, our clinic has always been devoted to making the lives of our animal friends as healthy and happy as possible...


More About Our Clinic

Morningstar has been owned and operated from its inception by Bettye Hooley, D.V.M.

Dr. Hooley is a Montrose native. She graduated from CSU's school of Veterinary Medicine in 1974. Dr. Hooley is dedicated to the care of the whole patient and she believes that an animal's health is more than just a punch-list of symptoms. She aggressively follows the latest research in the constantly evolving field of traditional and holistic veterinary medicine.

We have an expert staff, and even some "animal staff" (whom you may learn more about, below).


The Morningstar Mission

Morningstar Veterinary Clinic supports and nurtures the animal-human bond through integrative holistic and conventional pet health care. We focus on healthy pet-human relationships, good nutrition, and preventative health care.

Morningstar offers conventional medical and surgical care as well as homeopathy, Bach Flower Remedies, herbal, glandular and nutritional supplements, and uses Western Chinese Herbals.

Our vision for Morningstar is as an ever expanding and evolving resource for the concerned, educated client who has the patience to let healing happen on a deeper, gentler level. We see Morningstar as the integrator of conventional medicine and surgery and the myriad other “alternative” modalities that serve, by promoting better health, to bring us to a deeper understanding and appreciation of our animal companions, and our place in the world.


Morningstar Therapy dogs

The Morningstar Therapy Dog group conducts visits to local nursing homes, hospitals, Hospice, rehabilitation centers and other medical and mental health facilities. Visit the Website.

Read More about Therapy Dogs on our Resources Page >



Our "Animal Staff"


Bert (aka Bertram or Bert the Bird) came to us when he was around 15 years old when his original owner was no longer able to care for him. He had been subsisting on a less than ideal diet which had affected his plumage, and had been missing socialization and stimulation. It took him quite a while to adjust to his new home in a large cage in the front of the clinic, but he now takes great joy in his increased space and varied perching options. Luckily he quickly took to his new nutritious pelleted diet, supplemented with peas, rice and corn. He seems to enjoy being at the center of the action and greets us boisterously in the mornings when we arrive. Bert especially seems to love our feline patients and announces their arrival with gusto.  These days Bert, our geriatric darling, is looking bright and svelte with his new feathers. We are so glad that he has made Morningstar his home.

Catman, or Cat-Man-Do, came to us via a client who had rescued him in broken condition, only to discover that her dog was not amenable to cats in her territory. He arrived at the clinic with a definite limp, a curled up tail, a weepy eye, and a major attitude, especially towards dogs!  He would turn into a porcupine cat, every hair on his body fluffed out, every nail extended, every tooth showing, whenever confronted by a dog, which was fairly often, considering he had designated himself chief counter ornament! X-Rays showed that his femur (thigh bone) had been broken in two places and had healed in a S-curve, and that his hip on that side had also been popped out of joint. He had scars on his face that lead through his tear duct, leaving a perpetual tear leaking from one eye, and he was so tender in the pelvis that he would hiss and try to bite if petted on his rump. All in all, he did not seem like a good clinic cat candidate, and we tried for months to place him in a good, safe, loving home. Finally he tried to attack one too many dog patients, and Dr. Hooley had to have “The Talk” with him.  It was gently and lovingly explained to him that he just could not stay at the clinic any longer if he was going to attack our patients, and he was given one last chance to prove himself. Amazingly, he opted to stay at the clinic and give up his vendetta on dogs! Over time, he has had surgeries to repair the hip luxation, but continues to limp due to the poorly aligned fracture. He is still sensitive over his pelvis, and much prefers the head & neck pets to the rump pats. He feels it is his duty to make sure the front doors work properly, and can be seen entering and exiting repeatedly, just to give a new person the chance to act as his doorman.